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2008 Australia - Next Generation Telecoms and FttH

This annual report offers a wealth of information on the development of Next Generation Telecoms which also includes the FttN and FttH developments from Telstra, Terria and others. Extensive statistical information is also provided on Greenfield FttH deployments. The report includes analyses, statistics, forecasts and trends. It provides a comprehensive insight into the progress of Next Generation Telecoms and examines the key issues and opportunities. FttH is discussed in terms of its importance for the digital economy. BuddeComm’s analyses of the issues surrounding the regulating of fibre access are provided, along with a case study on this topic for Europe. Information on All-IP networks is incorporated, along with relevant technical information on both fibre and IP techniques. Please note: Next Generation Mobile Networks are covered in a separate annual publication.

Subjects covered include:

  • Analyses of Next Generation Telecoms including FttH and IP networks;
  • National and regional developments;
  • Greenfield FttH statistics and forecasts;
  • Analyses of the National Broadband Plan;
  • Analyses of FttH and the digital economy;
  • Relevant technical information on Fibre and IP techniques.

Telecommunication networks are undergoing extraordinary changes with investments in All-IP Next Generation Networks and fibre networks in order to meet burgeoning consumer demand for high-bandwidth applications. Telehealth, e-education, media and sustainability are also the key reasons why Australia needs Next Generation Networks (NGNs). IP is at the core of NGNs as it facilitates affordable multi service business models and seamlessly integrates voice, data and video. A proper inventory of national infrastructure assets is required if we want to establish an efficient and economic viable national broadband structure for these services. In this report we explore the next generation infrastructure of the future including Fibre (FttH), IP, VPLS and wireless NGN. By the mid-2000s NGNs had become an integral part of the corporate networks and by 2008 the majority of corporates had fully-deployed NGNs in place. The NGN market is set to grow significantly moving into 2009 as it cannibalises other telecoms revenues. This is fuelled by Telstra’s ambitious five year NGN plan to overhaul the public network. The report explores and analyses the developments around this massive project. This will set Telstra up for the next 20 years, which is an excellent position to be in when facing the new Internet media future. Other key players in the market include Optus, Soul, Commander, Macquarie Telecom, iiNet, Primus, Internode, TransACT, PowerTel and Nextgen Networks.

NGNs are one part of Next Generation Telecoms network the fibre out to the customer is the other element. Countries that recognise the importance of a fibre optic telecoms infrastructure for the above mentioned e-applications, as well as for their economy, are leading developments in FttH. The Australian government is currently in the process of joining this group of visionaries. However, despite its excellent plans and strategies in this field, Telstra has so far refused to roll out its planned FttN (node) network. Government intervention will be required to move this infrastructure development forwards. Mass market deployment of FttH is still several years away.

The government is committed to a $4.7 billion investment to ensure that these benefits are spread evenly throughout the country and the community. However, without a genuine participation from Telstra in the execution of this plan any such investment would be wasted. Instead it has opted for a highly focused and successful campaign to delay any new form of competition. This is buying the incumbent time to better prepare for the changing environment.

In the meantime Greenfield FttH activities have seen a significant increase since 2005. A few years ago, Telstra announced its initial trials in new estates and has since also announced its national roll out. By 2008, a large number of fibre operators were active in the market and there were over 130 active or proposed fibre communities in Australia. The report provides a detailed overview of fibre communities, as well as statistics on the number of FttH communities in Australia and New Zealand, number of homes connected to fibre with forecasts to 2010, and detailed statistics on the number of FttH communities by developer.

Key highlights:

  • The plan for a national network must be based on the ultimate network architecture of FttH in metro areas, plus a combination of technologies elsewhere - with end-to-end facilities for organisations such as healthcare, education, utilities, media companies and so on.
  • In 2008 deployment in Australia is still hampered by lack of government policies that allow for sound investments in a national NGT network.
  • Both Telstra and Terria (a group of 8 companies) have declared their interest in building such a network.
  • Regional plans are proposed by TransAct in Canberra, Axia in Western Australia and by the Tasmanian Government.
  • BuddeComm has taken an industry leadership role to assist the government in this process though the Digital Economy Industry Workgroup in which 200 people are participating, representing 140 companies.
  • Greenfield FttH projects will see some 35,000 houses connected by 2010, there are over 130 housing development projects underway with Western Australia leading the field with 2/3 of all projects happening in this state.
  • Broadband - Infrastructure blueprint

    Population penetration
    Metro FttH 75-80%
    Regional 30-50km Mixture 15-25%
    Remote 50km+ Satellite 1-2%
    (Source: BuddeComm, 2008)

    1. Next Generation Telecoms
    1.1 Industry & market overview
    1.1.1 Nextgen telcos - analysis
    1.1.2 IP and Next Generation Networks (NGNs)
    1.1.3 Virtual Private LAN Service (VPLS)
    1.1.4 Fibre and next generation telecoms
    1.1.5 Wireless NGN
    1.1.6 Brief case studies
    1.2 NGN - overview & stats
    1.2.1 Many failed attempts
    1.2.2 Market analysis
    1.2.3 NGN market trends
    1.2.4 NGN capital expenditure
    1.2.5 Market analysis - utilities-based telecoms infrastructure - May 2008
    1.2.6 IP wholesale opportunities
    1.3 NGN - key players
    1.3.1 Key players and their developments
    2. FttH and The Digital Economy
    2.1 Strategies for the digital economy
    2.1.1 Australian government is leading the way
    2.1.2 Essential for health, education and energy services
    2.1.3 Whole-of-government approach is necessary
    2.1.4 Regulatory frameworks are failing
    2.1.5 National benefits are astounding
    2.1.6 Conclusions
    3. Moving Towards FttH
    3.1 FttH and FttN market overview
    3.1.1 Different FttH business models
    3.1.2 Different fibre scenarios
    3.1.3 Telstra’s FttN Plan
    3.1.4 FttH and the electricity infrastructure
    3.1.5 Forecasting FttH
    3.1.6 FttH still an expensive exercise
    3.1.7 Regional fibre
    3.1.8 FttN - already out of date
    3.1.9 Start with low-hanging FttH fruit
    3.1.10 Policy analysis 2008
    3.1.11 Developments
    3.1.12 Slow move towards fibre - historic analysis
    3.2 FttH projects and developments
    3.2.1 COLT (Ballarat)
    3.2.2 TasCOLT - 100Mb/s in Hobart
    3.2.3 FttH broadband proposal for Brisbane
    3.2.4 Western Australia
    3.2.5 ICON (intra-government communications network) - ACT
    3.2.6 R&D, Science and Education projects
    3.3 FttH greenfield projects & providers
    3.3.1 Definition of Terms
    3.3.2 The importance of broadband
    3.3.3 Statistics on fibre-enabled communities
    3.3.4 Summary of key communities
    3.3.5 List of FttH communities
    4. National Broadband Plan
    4.1 Mid-2008
    4.1.1 Government’s national broadband plan
    4.1.2 Initial comments on the plan
    4.1.3 The Minister preparing to shake up the industry
    4.1.4 Open Access is imperative
    4.2 Analyses of RFP
    4.2.1 Introduction - overview of government’s RFP
    4.2.2 How did we get to where we are now?
    4.2.3 RFP is addressing the symptoms rather than the cause
    4.2.4 Government shying away from making the tough decisions
    4.2.5 Choice: Telstra’s monopolistic profits or affordable consumer prices
    4.2.6 Lack of leadership will haunt the government
    4.2.7 Structural changes are the only solution
    4.2.8 Money can’t buy my love
    4.2.9 BuddeComm’s predicted outcomes of the RFP process
    4.2.10 Where is the regulator?
    4.2.11 The Minister is again raising the bar for himself
    4.3 National broadband plans from Telstra, Terria & others
    4.3.1 Telstra’s initial FttN plan
    4.3.2 Consequent developments and analysis
    4.3.3 Terria - Optus-led industry initiative
    4.3.4 Axia NetMedia Corporation
    4.3.5 Acacia
    4.3.6 Other participants
    4.3.7 Regulatory Submission
    4.4 Regulating fibre access
    4.4.1 Introduction: FttH deployment overview
    4.4.2 FttH drivers
    4.4.3 Case study: Europe
    4.4.4 FttH business models
    4.4.5 Structural separation
    4.4.6 Examples of open access
    5. FttH Digital Economy and Industry Group
    5.1 Working Groups
    5.2 Digital Economy CEO Forum
    5.3 Smart grids, E-Health, E-Learning -new submissions
    5.4 Industry fighting for Open Access FttH
    5.4.1 The 17 National Broadband Network Principles
    5.5 FttH Workgroup recommendations to Expert Panel
    5.5.1 Common recommendations between greenfield and brownfield
    5.5.2 Key greenfield FttP recommendations
    5.5.3 Key brownfield FttP recommendations
    5.5.4 Key access seeker recommendations
    5.6 Smart Grid Australia and FttH Applications Work Groups
    5.6.1 FttH applications
    6. Glossary of Abbreviations

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