Having options for NBN subscribers and customers empowers them and gives them importance. It is them who will use the broadband service long term, after all. Having the choices and other custom options in their plans optimises their NBN use and gives them their money’s worth. It also gives them a better relationship with their RSP’s or Retail Service Providers.
For each instance and version of the NBN we apply for or get installed with, there are available options to suit subscriber needs and special situations. This applies to those who want to get FTTP but can’t, and would have to make do with a partial copper connection or hybrid in the premises by either its optimisation, or by taking other options. Those who really want a certain NBN version can check with the NBN Company directly for customised installations, with a price (plus extra time and effort).
People who live in non-coverage or non-existent NBN areas also have some other options, aside from waiting it out. For those in the business sectors and large groups, there are certain options available, mostly for maximising the service and improving related facilities, such as the telecommunications components of their service, like VoIP. There are many ways we can make sure to get more from these NBN plans and deals we have or would have.
For non FTTP connections
FTTP or Fibre to the Premises is 100% Fibre based and directly connected from the NBN main hub to one’s house. This is the most ideal NBN connection. It would be able to deliver the service as close as possible to the given rates and speeds. The connection is uniform and uninterrupted, since it is basically a continuous fibre optic connection.
However, not everyone can have this type of connection. The reason is the lack of full NBN infrastructure, especially in the premises, and existing older connections in there. The non FTTP connection is either combined with a copper based connection at the premises, or an existing HFC or Hybrid Fibre Coaxial connection adapted for NBN use.
There are options available for NBN subscribers who won’t be able to get the Fiber to the Premises connection. One is to do an optimisation on the existing non fibre components to make sure it is able to keep up with the performance and capabilities of the fibre part of the connection. This can be arranged with technicians and the RSP to make sure the service is able to perform optimally and as close to the given ranges of an FTTP connection. For those who still want an FTTP connection, or perhaps a certain NBN format, the next option can be taken.
If you really want a certain NBN format
Since there are certain reasons why we couldn’t get FTTP to our premises, we could still do something about it. The NBN Company has a program called Technology Choice Program, wherein we could put in a request application for either an Individual Premises Switch, or an Area Switch; the former is for individual subscribers who wish to get a 100% FTTP connection, or perhaps a different form of NBN connection.
The latter is for a group of users in a certain area who want the same options. There is much time, effort, and also funding needed for this kind of option, so this must be coordinated and checked first as it may be well over the budget. In this case, we would be well advised to check within the area where else it would be possible to get the NBN version of choice. Please be well advised as well, the RSP and ISP are not involved with the work and process for this option.
For regional, distant, and out of coverage areas
Speaking of areas for NBN connections, we have those that are already completed, in the process of, and those that will be in the roll out campaign. However, there are certain areas that are either not yet part of the network, or just simply are not in the network. But this is certainly changing.
One of the biggest issues we have to consider is the lack of workable NBN infrastructure, plus demand in that area. There are quite limited options available for wired NBN. But we have other formats, namely Fixed Wireless NBN, and Satellite NBN. While these formats have certain limitations such as physical blockage interferences and signals that don’t reach the receivers, right now they are the more practical options to get. One of the few things to check for are the aforementioned access issues, and close or far distances from the transmission satellites.
Distant and isolated regions have a lack of workable facilities and therefore can only use what they already have, and if there are existing facilities, most of them are these wireless options. That said, more and more of the populated areas like these are being included in future roll outs in order to accommodate requests for coverage.
Another option to take is the NBN’s Technology Choice Program. However, there may be a condition – that it has to have enough requests from those who live in the area enough to generate a successful application. That, and enough funding, which is also directly proportional to the number of people who can request for it.
For non-existent NBN infrastructure areas
Among all these conditions and situations discussed, this one may have the most limited options available. However, most areas with at least a workable population and enough demand should somehow get included in the coverage or roll out areas.
Among possible options we could have is when the area becomes included in the campaign, or when enough people request for coverage. This may be feasible, and if possible, will likely result in a wireless NBN format such as Fixed Wireless or Satellite. However, most areas that may have no other options are usually lacking in demand or are just too isolated (or both) to consider for roll out inclusion.
For large groups, businesses, and corporations
These groups have options as well. But not really for getting the NBN installation done, as most of them already belong in connected areas or in soon to be connected ones. The options they have are more of optimising their plans. NBN services for larger groups applicable in business, corporations or mass housing can either opt to change their phone services to VoIP, avail of telecommunications packages that include VoIP and teleconferencing, or to optimise an existing connection that services a huge group of people all using the connection at the same time.
There are deals that companies can avail of that includes VoIP and telecommunications packages that will serve both broadband and telecommunications needs. They can upgrade existing phone lines for a more superior format, while getting a better monthly rate as well.
In addition to these, the same larger access groups may also optimise their connection by applying for an Area Switch with the NBN Company, and almost often, they can get the application approved since there will be enough demand in the application to get it considered. Aside from this, they can also go for higher speed tiers to make sure demand across the company is uniform, high speed, and has bigger bandwidth, to meet larger demands.