NBN Co was launched in April 2009 as a government business enterprise (GBE), wholly owned by the Commonwealth of Australia. It is overseen by shareholder ministers' the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy and the Minister of Finance and Deregulation. NBN Co in 2015 was rebranded as NBN, and is here cited separately to the NBN (as the infrastructure).
The purpose of the company is to build a nationwide, wholesale-only, high-speed, open broadband network. Since its inception it has been selecting technology and designing the network and systems, as well as developing a wholesale product offering.
In its original plan under the previous government, the company would connect 93% of homes, schools and workplaces to an optical fibre network (fibre-to-the-premises FttP), providing high-speed broadband services to Australians in urban and regional towns. The remaining 7% of premises will be connected to an LTE-based fixed wireless network, and this includes the very remote ones who will be linked to a satellite network.
With the arrival of a new government the original plan will be replaced by what they call an Optimised Multi-Technology Mix'. While details of this plan are slowly emerging it won't be until 2015 before the extent of the changes become clear.
Under the new plan at least 90% of Australians would get broadband speeds of about 50Mb/s by year-end 2019.
The new plan would cost $41 billion. It is a move away from a pure Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) plan to a multi-technology approach deploying FttP, FttN, FttB/DP and HFC in addition to fixed wireless and satellite.
The fixed telecoms part of the plan envisions a split of:
26% FttP 44% FttN 30% HFC
NBN Co said that this would result in 40% to 45% of the fixed line footprint with speeds of at least 25 Mbps in 2016, 90% with speeds of 50 Mbps in 2019 and nearly 100% of the footprints with speeds of 25 Mbps by the end of 2020.
This report also provides financial and operational information regarding NBN Cos corporate plan, including forecasts. This outlines the original plans for the competitive pricing for wholesale broadband, including a basic service offering with a uniform national wholesale access price.