This morning nbn revealed it is halting the rollout of the HFC portion of the NBN rollout. While the project has many issues, it seems HFC connectivity is their biggest right now and they need to take stock of what’s causing the issues and resolve before simply powering ahead and creating a bigger footprint with bigger issues.
The changes to the HFC (you may know it as the Pay TV network) are designed to provide a better experience when getting connected and when using the service. The changes will also help to further improve the reliability of the network. Until now, nbn have been adding around 80,000 new premesis each month.
The plan is that by the end of the project in 2020 that almost 3 million premises will connect to the NBN via HFC, so its incredibly important this is done right. It is hard to see how pausing the rollout at this time won’t impact the end date. That has to ultimate change the ramp up and completed connections per week, which either requires the existing workforce to work overtime, or to grow the workforce, both of which will impact the cost of the project.
NBN Co Chief Executive, Bill Morrow said,
“So we can provide a better experience to our customers and their end users, NBN Co will immediately implement new initiatives designed to improve the quality of service for end users on our HFC network.
In order to deliver an improved experience on HFC, NBN Co will be performing additional work ahead of end users being able to connect to nbn services on the HFC network.
With the incremental work now required before a home is declared ready to connect, we are focused on providing a better service to our customers (the internet service providers) and thereby improving the experience for the end user.
While the good news is that we are working on a better experience for the internet providers and end users, the improvement efforts will take additional time and therefore a delay of schedule will occur for most of the remaining HFC premises that have yet to switch to services on the nbn access network.
We remain confident of reaching our goal of completing the build and connecting eight million Australian premises by 2020.
There are so many elements of this industry transformation that we cannot directly control, but we are serious about improving that which we can. This is a deliberate change to demonstrate NBN Co’s focus on putting the customer experience as a priority over all else.
The HFC access technology is used around the world to deliver reliable high speed broadband services. This technology is an important part of NBN Co’s technology mix.
The rollout of the nbn access network is one of the most complex and ambitious initiatives in any telecommunications market across the world – we are focused on ensuring the network is ready to deliver services which meet the expectations of Australians.”
If you’re place was in the process of being connected, the good news for you is that it still will be. nbn turned to Twitter to clarify, new orders are being suspended. Some new outlets are reporting the delay could be as long as 9 months.