Thursday, September 12, 2013

FttN+P Implementation for Australia

In "The Lexus and the Broadband Network" I likened the choice between the ALP's  FttP National Broadband Network (NBN) and  FttN Coalition Broadband Policy to be like the choice between a new Lexus and a ten year old Toyota Camry car, with the kids wanting a scooter (wireless broadband). The Coalition won the election and so the Fibre to the Node (FttN) option is the one which is to be implemented, but will have elements of the ALP's NBN Fibre to the Premises (FttP, sometimes called Fibre to the Home FttH) in it. The current fiber which has been installed will not be removed. So perhaps the new approach might be termed FttN+P.

An on-line petition proposes "The Liberal Party of Australia: Reconsider your plan for a 'FTTN' NBN in favour of a superior 'FTTH' NBN". To ask a government, which just won an election, to reverse part of its platform is at best a waste of time and may be counter-productive, reducing the chances of getting FttP.

Even if the government thought FttP a good idea, they couldn't be seen to be admitting their previous policy was wrong. Pressure via a petition for FttP would have the effect of requiring the government to defence its policy and thus limit its ability to provide FttP (even where the Government thought it a good idea).

A better strategy would be suggest the FttN policy be "enhanced", without admitting this is a reversal. Some new term, such as FttN+P could be invented, indicating Fibre to the Node, plus Premises (in some locations). The exact meaning of this would be kept vague, so it could cover both roll-out of just fiber in new green-fields sites and the option of fibre in some FttN installations.

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