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How Far Is Your Node?

Thursday, 01 August 2013 21:26

The broadband speeds of Malcolm Turnbull’s FTTN plan depend on a number of factors, including the quality of the copper, its diameter and how far it runs for.

Detractors, like Kieran Cummings (who tweets under the handle @sortius) claim the plan fails on all these counts. On his blog he says it’ll take millions of cabinets to achieve the proposed speed, but he could be prone to exaggeration.

So, how did Malcolm Turnbull arrive at his figure of 50,000 nodes and how far the run is from the node to the home? On this week’s CrossTalk he has an answer that we hadn’t been able to find in the public domain – and we asked a lot of people.

But it's only an average. What about those houses that fit within a node area but have a copper run length way above the average? Paul Brooks from Layer 10 Advisory says there are many cases where some houses are set a long way back from the road, for example.

Turnbull’s average distance from existing pillars give a ball-park indication of how practical the Coalition’s broadband plan is, but could the cost of outlying properties push the price up higher?

Brian Beckor from goemapping specialists Callpoint Spatial, says only Telstra has the data needed to figure that out – and reckons they’ve probably already been through the exercise.

In which case, wouldn’t a reality check help Malcolm sell his plan and broaden the public debate ahead of an election?

What do you think? Add comments above, or on the CrossTalk feedback line: 02 9304 5198

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Last modified on Thursday, 29 August 2013 21:06


How Far Is Your Node?


0 #1 Anthony 2013-08-02 11:35
Thank you Phil!
0 #2 Anthony 2013-08-02 11:49
However your roads argument is quite apt.

How do you clear up the roads? You give people more flexibility in what they can do from home. To do that, you need reliable and modern communications.

Remember "let you fingers do the walking".

Where would we have been without it.....
0 #3 Jason Howe 2013-08-02 15:42
min cable length of 40 km copper loop, 350-500 meters average from the pit, concept Malcolm from year dot has been quoting line of sight rather than physical cable length's

FTTN isn't physically possible, 0.22mm-0.40mm, don't rely on the percentages malcolm quotes the base line..
reality is we need fibre for the forseeable future though Turnbull keeps running mouth with the 1/3 of the facts and nothing gets done..
0 #4 seven_tech 2013-08-02 21:32
Interesting outcome- seems the Coalition have far more information to find AND give before we'd even get close to an answer.

Just on your last comment though Phil:

The NBN isn't akin to removing traffic on roads. The NBN is akin to sealing all 93% of roads and allowing people to travel as fast as they like (assuming safety isn't a factor) depending on the car they buy. Some buy faster cars because they want or need it, thus paying for the roads (via stamp duty) of those who don't.

FTTN is akin to 71% of those roads being variable in quality and requiring those who need it to buy a bypass to the main highway.

It's not about equality of speed. It's about the CHOICE of speed- FTTN takes away that choice for business and high end users- those that do the MOST to pay for & use the network- 10% of users use 50% of capacity.
0 #5 Eric E 2013-08-04 22:22
I am dying to see how some people take to all these new "boxes" appearing on their streets (especially those who thought an extra cable strung from pole to pole was ugly).

Of course we don't talk about errant motorists nocking these boxes over from time to time.
0 #6 RichardU 2013-08-29 00:14
The fibre capable nodes sound unique to the requirement that customers can roll their own fibre. Does anyone know how much each node costs installed?
0 #7 RichardU 2013-08-29 07:55
Malcolm’s mini nodes that fit in pits sound too easy to be true. But won’t they need to be powered? And what of the backup batteries? Will they fit in the pit and be waterproof?

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