The National Broadband Network (NBN) will enable high speed broadband Internet services to be delivered to all Australian households, businesses and enterprises in urban and regional towns with speeds up to 100 times faster than present, extending to towns with a population of around 1000 people or more.
According to NBN Co, the Government Business Enterprise formed in 2009 to design, build and operate the NBN, high speed broadband
…has the potential to transform access to education for regional and remote students and deliver broad social and economic benefits as a result.
The Australian Government has established the National Broadband Network to address three challenges:
- Australia’s ageing telecommunications infrastructure and the need to provide better service in regional and rural Australia;
- The exponential increase in data consumption. According to the ABS, data consumption has quadrupled in the last four years;
- A level playing field in the retail service market is expected to drive effective competition, better services and lower prices for consumers.
The NBN construction will be rolled out simultaneously in metropolitan, regional and rural areas over approximately 9.5 years to 2021. The fibre optic network will cover 93% of Australia’s population with a combination of satellite and fixed wireless technology for the 7% remainder. Initial peak speeds are offered up to 100 megabits per second moving to 1 gigabit per second in 2012.
The NBN project is expected to require funding to the tune of $40.9 billion. The Australian Government is expected to contribute $27.5 billion over the life of the project and an estimated $13.4 billion from project finance or financial markets.