Government now prepared to fund FTTN

With an announcement from the government due soon about the changes proposed to the FTTN network idea, there has been plenty of speculation.

However a recent news article in SMH mentions that the federal government might be throwing money at a network afterall, but not billions.

Oi John, How about you just thank Labor for the idea, and copy the plan completely? You are basically following their ideas as it is anyway.

Of course, the catch is they will not be throwing billions at the fibre network, and instead will propose that government subsidies be used where appropriate to reach Regional and Rural areas.

I don’t agree with the idea of taking funds from the Future Fund, sure it gets me a fast internet connection, and the idea is sound in that the returns would go back in the Future Fund, but if they are only making 8%, where as the financial market can give them 15% or more, with only a marginal increase in risk, the money is doing better elsewhere.

They could in fact take some of the 15% instead to use in extending Regional Broadband services though, as the effect isn’t taking “all” the funds, and instead just reduces the returns bought into the Future Fund.

As for rumours they would be adding $300m to the $600m broadband connect plan, that really does sound like a great idea.

It also adds more credit to the networks idea that Optus, with Elders, and another company are both getting funds to roll out broadband services to Regional and Rural areas.

The expected purposes for the roll out would be a combination of backhaul, and customer services.

Doing this would reduce their Telstra dependance, and promote competition in regional areas removing the problem of high stupidly priced Telstra backhaul.

With competing backhaul, we can only see Telstra’s prices be forced down.

The same is the goal of Project Runway, PIPEs proposal to connect Australia with Guam, and offer more competing backhaul, forcing prices down lower.

And with Telstra planning to run its own $300m cable to the US, and remove the spending to Southern Cross cables and AJC, the pressure will be on those to price harder and compete better in the international transit market.

I think there are still more room in the areas of P2P caching before any drastic measures are taken with international capacity, as most of the P2P demands do actually flow overseas, and caching that data locally using packet matching techniques would certainly reduce the need for high capacity links to the US and the rest of the planet.

We do need faster broadband services, we don’t need to spend billions on duplication, however, we do need to take the regulatory change, and spend the dollars on removing Telstra’s private monopoly as a problem for most ISPs, and a problem for pricing in the industry, and instead, encourage the competition to invest, and have protection in investing in their own equipment.

We don’t need Telstra overbuilding, we don’t need Telstra threatening. The sooner Telstra loses its infrastructure, the better off we all are.

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