The response to the new 1000/50 and 250/25 NBN offerings has well outstripped expectations, Aussie Broadband has revealed.
The 1000/50 plans are the first unlimited residential gigabit offerings available nationwide to fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) and a small percentage of cable (HFC) users. The plans were first proposed by NBN Co as part of a wholesale pricing review last year, but they only became commercially available last Friday. A new NBN 250/50 plan was also made available, a cheaper version of the 250/100 Aussie Broadband had been selling since last year.
Aussie Broadband is the only retailer offering the unlimited 1000/50 plans so far, although the plans are available for other retailers. (Superloop has a 1000/50 offering, although it’s capped at 1TB of data a month and shapes users to 100Mbps down afterwards.) In an email to Kotaku Australia, an Aussie Broadband representative confirmed that 2,054 active customers have taken up, or upgraded to, the unlimited 1000/50 $149 plan.
Update 2/06: Aussie Broadband announced in a release Tuesday morning that 2,289 “new and existing customers” are on their 1000/50 plan, while 850 customers have picked up their 250/25 plan, which launched at the same time. “We did not dream that the demand for the 1GB and new lower cost [NBN] 250 plans would be so high,” Aussie Broadband managing director Phillip Britt said.
The plan is being sold as a “best effort service”, although under NBN Co’s definition NBN 1000/50 means a service that provides between 500MBps and 1000MBps down. It’s worth noting HFC users are artificially capped as well, with HFC connections only promised to access up to 750/50.
The takeup means the 1000/50 plan is already more successful than the takeup of NBN 250 plans. ITNews reported last week that Aussie Broadband had 919 active 250Mbps services, which amounted to just under half of all active 250MBps services on the network.
As of the middle of last week, there were only 129 active gigabit services on the NBN. Aussie Broadband serviced 51 of those, meaning that the ISP is now servicing roughly 2,000 customers who weren’t previously on any gigabit connection before.
The takeup comes only a few years after the then-NBN Co CEO Bill Morrow argued against introducing gigabit plans on the network. At the time, Morrow argued that the NBN was designed to be upgradeable as needed. “Rather than build for a demand that may materialise in ten years, we are constructing a national network capable of continuous upgrading to meet market needs as and when they arise,” Morrow wrote in an op-ed on Gizmodo Australia.
“There is little point in adding to the already high $49 billion cost of the nbn™ network to provide a capability that end users do not yet require and RSPs are not selling.”
Last week, NBN Co CEO Bill Morrow took a beating for claiming Australians won't use a gigabit broadband service, even if it was offered for free. He hit back at his detractors with a lengthy opinion piece, explaining his position. We take a look at some of the arguments he made and breakdown why they are flawed.Read more
While Morrow added that the rollout of G.fast and DOCSIS 3.1 technologies would make gigabit internet more accessible in countries like Australia, his comments were not the first time the former CEO had frustrated Australians looking for faster internet speeds. During a half-yearly result meeting, the Courier-Mail reported the NBN Co CEO saying that Australians wouldn’t use gigabit internet “even if we offered it for free.” A year later, Mr Morrow found himself in hot water for implying that gamers were responsible for congestion on the NBN.
A parliamentary hearing in Sydney got an extra touch of spice yesterday, after the chief executive of NBN Co appeared to finger one group of users supposedly responsible for congestion on NBN's fixed wireless network: gamers.Read more