NBN Co. boosts broadband target to nearly 5 million Australian homes, businesses

NBN Co., the Australian company charged with building government's ambitious fiber to the premises plan, is adding another 1.3 million homes and businesses to its initial buildout target, bringing the total subscriber reach to over 4.8 million by 2016.

Stephen Conroy, Australia's Communications Minister, released an updated three-year network construction plan.

Under the new three-year plan, the service provider has added over 1.35 million premises to the rollout. It will cover almost 190 new towns and groups of suburbs, in addition to more homes and businesses in areas covered by the previous plan.

"We're getting on with the job of rolling out the NBN in every state and territory," said Mike Quigley, NBN Co.'s CEO, in a release. "Our plan is to deliver better broadband to every Australian over the remaining 8 years of this 10-year build."

Although the service provider has a long way to go to meet its goals, it said that in areas where the FTTP service has been available for over 12 months the company reported that families have already purchased an NBN package.

A study conducted of the first release site in Brunswick, Melbourne, revealed that almost half of existing NBN users polled said household internet costs were roughly the same since they switched to NBN, while 14 percent were paying less by using an internet phone service instead of a separate phone line.

Despite the progress that the NBN Co. has made, Australia's Liberal-National coalition political party has proposed an alternative plan that would use a fiber to the node configuration to deliver 25 Mbps speeds to the country's residents and businesses.

For more:
- see the release (.pdf)

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