[LINK] Peter Martin Economist (?) blames Labor for NBN!

David Lochrin dlochrin at key.net.au
Thu Aug 10 14:14:20 AEST 2017

On Thursday 10 August 2017 at 12:05 Jim Birch wrote:

> $50 billion for a national FTTN network is a lot of money.  This very close to the Australia's annual expenditure on road infrastructure.  The value has been estimated at $280 billion.  I don't have a split for maintenance v. improvement.
> A per premise cost of $4k for FTTN as 25 years loan at 4% (the sort of rate the the government borrows at) is about $250 per year per premise. Or $5/week.  The FTTN network won't be zero maintenance but it is stable infrastructure.

Jim, I'm not clear where you're heading with this argument.

Given that many people in cities & regional areas report FTTN performance is little better than common-or-garden ADSL2+, the question is why bother with FTTN in the first place?

Apart from performance issues, we retain all the inherent disadvantages of the copper network while introducing a few more in relation to the FTTN nodes.  Each node offers a single point of failure for ~1,000 users, and consumes energy costing in the vicinity of $1,489 p.a. according to a 2014 estimate at

In addition, _each FTTN user_ also has to fund a modem/router/VoIP ATA of unknown (probably poor) quality, and may need house rewiring.

The original motivation for the NBN stemmed from the privatised shambles Howard's "three amigos" made of what was once a world-class telephone network, and a desire to improve telecommunications in remote areas.  However we could have achieved that in a structured and more cost-effective way, spending money as necessary to fix actual problems.  FTTN doesn't fix any problem as far as I can see and is a complete waste.

David L.

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