In response to this statement on ABC’s Q and A programme 23/5/2016.
Mr Pyne’s statement about not needing fast NBN and then using the measure of being able to watch “5 full length movies in the same household if you all want to at the same time.” shows the reluctance to actually put a number on expected speeds while simultaneously making an attempt to manage consumer expectations.
Firstly, Last time I checked we measured speeds in fixed units of measure known as bits per second or bytes per second not simultaneous streams of video that can be in variable resolutions and subject to different compression techniques.
Users understand megabits per second, there are tools all over the place and netflix has recently launched fast.com the simplest speed test I have ever seen. People can instantly test the speeds of their internet service and report these figures back to their internet service provider and the ISPs actually accept these as true measurements.
Secondly, the NBN is not all about movies. The education and health sectors are becoming increasingly reliant on high speed networks as are small and large business. There will come a time when the economy will be looking to shift further into knowledge economies where a fast and reliable internet connection to the rest of the world could mean the difference between winning and losing a contract.
There is also this upcoming and booming sector known as the Internet of Things, an expected US$348M for 2016 is expected to be spent globally on this new class of product that will inevitably rely on an internet connection. We can expect to see homes and businesses all over Australia demand faster broadband as consumers purchase more IoT services and businesses scramble to catch this massive wave of innovation that is expected to be worth 6% of the global economy by 2020 at an estimated value of US$100T.
Throughout the ISP and telecommunications industry, it is accepted that FTTN is a short term and poor performer compared to FTTP as it still relies on copper for the last stretch between the node and the home. This is even before we look at remote solutions where people are expected to work with satellite services that are a decent half-measure but lack the responsiveness for time sensitive applications like video conferencing and monitoring.
Mr. Pyne has lost my confidence as it seems he is intentionally lowering the bar on a technical project that has simply been turned into a political plaything.
I would have had more respect for the current governments plans for the NBN is they had simply said that FTTP was a good option and simply pushed ahead with it. In my mind there is no shame in running with someone else’s idea and delivering it instead of saying that a slower and shorter-lived solution would be better.
We are not stupid. We can see what you are trying to do.