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Vertigan

Time to test $300m pa for USO?

This one page Economuse draws attention to the $3oom pa paid to Telstra for the “copper continuity obligation”, which maintains fixed copper services outside the NBN fixed network footprint. It suggests that changes to the definition of the USO and the growing availability of mobile services mean that there may be savings possible in a renegotiated contract. See Economuse 2016-07-14

Submission on USO Levy

The Bureau of Communications Research at the Department of Communications is tasked with finding out how to fund non-commercial services on the NBN. An industry levy seen as the prime mechanism that will sustain these services in the presence of infrastructure competition (as I argued in my 2010 submission to the Senate).

This submission is a response to the request for comments on the Bureau’s first consultation paper.

To access the submission, click USO-Levy-JdR

Act now – or the NBN will be a white elephant

The current (Aug 2012) NBN business plan is a fantasy and we must now assume a legislated monopoly will not hold.

The new carrier licence condition that will apply in January may close the loophole in legislation that TPG exploited. But TPG has a Plan B that uses wireless spectrum and cannot be stopped so easily.

The real issue for the NBN is that mobile is rapidly becoming the de-facto standard for broadband access. It is already competitive with the NBN for downloads up to 15 GB per month.

These issues and some ideas for dealing with them are explored in Act now – or the NBN will be a white elephant

Vertigan’s cost benefit analysis

Volume II of the Vertigan reports the cost benefit analysis (CBA) of the NBN. The focus was on the difference between the multi-technology mix approach now used and fibre to the premise. It is no surprise that the former is better in terms of cost and time to deliver.

The surprise was that a key study underpinning the CBA finds that only 5% of households will need 43Mbps by 2023. This has significant implications for the role of mobile broadband, discussed in this opinion piece.

This opinion piece also explores the idea that while there is no current killer application for high speed broadband, the impact of bestowing full speed broadband on traffic and innovation needs to be considered.

In Australia, there is no premium for speed on mobile networks. If the same applied to fixed networks, Australia would lead the world.

The 4 page opinion piece can be read by clicking Economuse 2014-09-15

The NBN and infrastructure competition can be compatible

 Infrastructure competition should be welcomed – if it plays its part in making universal broadband service available.

The Labor policy that required mothballing networks that could compete with the NBN to underwrite an internal cross-subsidy was a travesty.

This opinion piece published in CommsWire on 22 April looks at the options that would support both infrastructure competition and universally affordable broadband service.

It concludes that an industry levy would lead to efficient by-pass of the NBN while supporting affordable universal broadband service.

To read more click on Economuse 2014-04-22 (levy)