NBN Co goes live with FTTC technology in two Australian suburbs as CEO steps down

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Fibre to the curb (FTTC) access technology has now been rolled out by the Australian National Broadband Network (NBN Co) to more than 1,000 homes and businesses in Coburg, North Melbourne in Victoria and Miranda, South Sydney in New South Wales.

The aim is to help NBN Co work with internet providers to optimise the customer experience of people who will receive nbn services over the FTTC network before releasing a larger footprint in the near future. The technology is designed to deliver access to wholesale speeds of up to 100/40Mb/s and has the potential to offer higher speeds through a new copper acceleration technology, G.fast, which NBN Co plans to launch in selected areas by the end of the year.

In a statement, Brad Whitcomb, chief customer officer – residential at NBN Co said that the network had been working with service providers for the past few months in order to test the systems, processes, and self-installation experience, but admitted that it is likely ‘we will continue to gain insights as we navigate the complexity of the build as well as potential issues which can arise when people connect to the network.’

He said: ‘As with the introduction of any new technology, we are committed to working with internet providers to optimise the customer experience of people who connect the network using nbn services over the FTTC network before we make services available to a larger footprint. Our decision to undertake a limited volume release means that a small number of homes and businesses will now have a new date for when they are able to connect to a service over the nbn access network – we will continue to update our website to provide people with the latest information.’

The announcement came just days after NBN Co CEO, Bill Morrow, informed the board and government that he intends to step down from his position by the end of the year, by which point he will have led the organisation for four years and nine months. Morrow commented: ‘I believe that as the company prepares to confront the new challenges ahead, this is the right time to hand over the reins for the next phase of this incredible project and for me to plan for the next step in my career.’

Added chairman Dr Ziggy Switkowski: ‘The country has been fortunate to have Bill lead this extraordinary project.  While we will be sorry to see him leave, Bill has built a resilient, performance-driven organisation which will build on his legacy.’

A global search will be undertaken for Morrow’s successor. Meanwhile, a larger footprint of homes and businesses receiving nbn services over the FTTC network is expected in the second half of 2018.

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