[LINK] Gillard announced a $620 million deal for two NBN broadband satellites.

Jan Whitaker jwhit at melbpc.org.au
Mon Feb 13 20:02:08 AEDT 2012

At 11:56 AM 9/02/2012, Marghanita da Cruz wrote:
>It is probably a combination of Competition/Capacity/Capability at
>different levels. Satellite owners may be locked into Media/Telephone
>customers contracts, considerations and configurations from an Analog world.

Good guess:

Optus chief executive Paul O'Sullivan has 
defended NBN Co's decision to construct and 
launch its own satellites, saying his company 
would not be able to provide the same quality of 
broadband service on its existing commercial satellites.

The satellites which NBN Co is building are 
specifically built to carry broadband traffic, 
while Optus's satellites are designed to carry 
television and video services, O'Sullivan explained.
[snip the Turnbull silliness]

However Mr O'Sullivan said NBN Co had made the 
right decision because of technical differences 
between different satellite types.

"The first point I would make is that the NBN 
satellites are purpose built to carry broadband 
traffic. Our [satellites] carry broadband traffic 
but have not been designed specifically for that purpose," he said.

"Part of the issue around this debate is that 
there are fundamental differences in satellite 
between the Ku band, which we use, and the Ka 
band, which is increasingly used internationally 
for broadband services. The differences is the 
way in which the spot-beams are tailored and 
focused in order to carry traffic. And we carry 
mainly broadcast-type content ­ video, television 
programming etc ­ on our satellites. That is 
quite different than the Ka band which is what is 
used for broadband satellite."

Ka satellites carry data at a higher radio 
spectrum frequency than Ku satellites, allowing higher bandwidth communication.

"What you would see is a difference in capacity 
and economics and speed between a Ka band 
satellite and a Ku band satellite. We could carry 
this traffic, but we would not be able to do it 
with the speed, economics and capacity that a Ka 
band satellite could do it with. That is the 
reason why they chose to go that route and we are 
happy to co-operate in working with them in order 
to assist them rolling it out," Mr O'Sullivan explained.

The NBN Co satellite service is now available to 
Australians who live outside the metropolitan and 
regional areas which will be supplied with 
broadband services over fibre-optic cable or fixed-wireless.

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