Rural and remote areas will continue to struggle to keep up with urban telecommunications despite the progress that has been made with initiatives such as the Mobile Black Spot Program (MBSP) and the NBN fixed wireless and satellite. A more radical approach is needed as we consider updating the Universal Service Obligation, public safety network options and mobile roaming. Instead of more expensive small gains at the margin, or counter productive roaming arrangements, we should take a large step forward by having the Commonwealth, States and MNOs work together.
To read more, click Economuse 2017-2-03-safety net
I have had the good fortune to work with Bob James (we developed the TransAct NBN Mark I business case) and Robin Eckermann (the Australian father of FTTN – 10 years ahead of the Commonwealth).
We have developed the idea attached; which could be a game changer for rural and remote customers. The concept is novel but not rocket science. Aceptance and execution will be tricky.
Is it possible – or wise – to have unlimited data over wireless? It seems that it is.
In this column, Australia is compared with Finland where one telco recently reported more data was carried over its mobile network than over its fixed networks. That must be a first for any operator with both fixed and mobile networks. In Finland and some other European countries unlimited mobile data is offered. This is not the case in Australia – yet.
For more, click economuse-2016-10-02
This is my ninth annual review of the retail broadband market in Australia. There are some striking changes since last year and this year we compare our market with New Zealand.
The big change this year is the hike in NBN charges. Last year, the cheapest NBN 25/5 plan was TPG with $50 (for 5 GB pm) and this year the cheapest is TPG at $70 (and unlimited data). While Bigpond’s ADSL2+ pricing did not change in the last year, its NBN 25/5 plans all went up by $10. They went up by $20 for Optus (with unlimited data).
To see the 2 page column go to economuse-2016-09-19
The Productivity Commission is taking submissions on the policy for the universal service obligation (USO). Submissions are due by 21 July. The draft report is expected in December with a final report to the Commonwealth bu April 2017.
My thoughts on the future of the USO are expressed at length in my Occasional Paper for ACCAN (see my publications page). But, I have submitted some key point in this 3 page submission USO-Prod.Com.July-2016