NBN Co claimed on Monday that the number of Australian homes and businesses connected to higher speed NBN plans has more than doubled with more than a million people upgrading their speeds in the last four months.
The company’s monthly progress report shows a dramatic increase in orders for plans over the NBN network based on wholesale speeds of 50Mb/s or higher, rising from 16 per cent in December to 37 per cent.
Growth was driven by NBN Co’s ‘focus on 50’ wholesale promotion, which gives retailers discounted pricing on higher speed NBN plans as well as a 50 per cent boost of additional bandwidth.
This promotion is now being superseded by new wholesale bundles next month that provide more pricing flexibility than the existing promotion. This is expected to encourage ISPs to reduce bandwidth congestion and sell higher speed broadband retail plans, the company said.
Brad Whitcomb, NBN’s chief customer officer, said that three months ago, less than one in 15 users connected to the ‘sweet spot’ wholesale 50Mb/s plans.
“Today we have more than one in four signed up to them for better value than what they would have previously been paying,” Whitcomb said.
He said that the average network bandwidth congestion per Australian home is consistently sitting below 30 minutes per week compared with more than six hours per week this time last year.
“Our insights indicate people who have connected to higher speed plans are now happier with their experience and are bale to better enjoy the benefits of fast broadband such as streaming using multiple devices, working from home and access to online education resources,” he said.
The NBN is half way built with more than 3.7 million home and businesses already connected, the company said. Eight million are expected to be connected by the end of 2020.
Meanwhile, NBN’s latest progress report also found that the average home or business connected to the network is experiencing around 18 minutes of per week of bandwidth congestion, compared with six hours and 55 minutes per week in March last year.
The NBN was up and running more than 99.93 per cent of the time in March, compared to 100 per cent in the corresponding month last year; while 83 per cent of faults were resolved with phone and internet providers within the agreed time frames, compared to 65 per cent in March 2017.
Follow Byron Connolly on Twitter: @ByronConnolly
Join the CIO Australia group on LinkedIn. The group is open to CIOs, IT Directors, COOs, CTOs and senior IT managers.