back to article NBN costs creating budget time bomb: Deloitte

Once a fan of Australia's National Broadband Network, Deloitte Access Economics is now warning it's a time bomb for the federal budget. Last week, the federal government tipped in a loan of AU$19.5 billion so nbnTM could finish its NBN rollout. Deloitte is now warning that the network doesn't cover the government's total $49 …

  1. Pompous Git Silver badge

    No great surprise here

    The dude who installed NBN at the Git's home told him the NTD cost $AU600. In Japan the NTD is a $AU15 Ethernet port. If the Japanese need the functionality provided by the NBN's NTD, they purchase a device to plug into the Ethernet port. Apart from lining the pockets of the manufacturers, can anyone tell me why every NBN installation needs an NTD with four ports for four separate RSPs? Ten million $AU600 devices is a lot of moolah for the ALP's mates and matesses.

    1. AnthonyP69

      Re: No great surprise here

      If you are asking why don't we just have a Ethernet port on the wall to plug into?

      This would be down to the technologies being deployed.

      The FTTP NTU had the option of running 4 ISP services, and 2 PSTN to VoIP services.

      The FTTN needs a VDSL modem, which only allows for a single ISP and a single PSTN to VoIP service.

      In Japan they must have a NTU with multiple ethernet ports servicing appartments. Technically we could have this is the FTTB model but the apartment buildings will need to replace their crappy phone lines for CAT5 ethernet cable.

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: No great surprise here

        If you are asking why don't we just have a Ethernet port on the wall to plug into?
        I am indeed. Why would any average household need to access four different ISPs? I'm on FW and there's VOIP (two ports) via the Internet router supplied my my ISP. There's no secondary box for VOIP because we retain a POTS so no need for VOIP. The conclusion I reached very soon after the NBN rollout commenced here in Tasmania is that this hasn't been very well thought out.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: No great surprise here

          Why would any average household need to access four different ISPs?

          I believe the extra ports were designed for government/proprietary networks, like ehealth, megaport, aws, auspost, etc. Good idea, but no longer viable as the model relies on a ubiquitous network.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That hole could be as much as $22 billion, if a PriceWaterhouseCoopers calculation from February this year is correct. PWC predicted that by 2024, the network would be worth $27 to potential buyers.

    If you NPV that to 2016 I think I have the money in my wallet. Can I have the network?

  3. Rattus Rattus

    So a shit tier network that will cost more to maintain over a decade or two (thanks to moronic design) than it cost to install is likely to have trouble finding buyers? Quelle surprise.

  4. LAURIE PATTON | CEO Internet Australia

    Internet Australia, the NFP peak body representing Internet users, wants the Government to allow nbn to abandon its copper (FTTN) rollout in order to help minimise the amount of money it will need to borrow to complete this vital infrastructure project.

    This follows the announcement that nbn is to borrow almost $20 billion from the Government, repayable in 2020/21.

    CEO Laurie Patton pointed to community concerns about the limited speeds being delivered to customers on the FTTN network and to advice from IA's technical experts that FTTN will need to be replaced in 10 to 15 years' time if not sooner.

    "nbn must be encouraged to use future-proofed technologies that will provide for our long term broadband requirements without the need to incur massive upgrade costs even before the business becomes profitable", Mr Patton said, "The way it looks now, at the time when they have to repay the Government they will need to borrow more money to rebuild the FTTN network".

    Internet Australia believes that nbn should move to new technology options that weren't available when the Government instructed it to abandon its fibre-to-the-premises model in favour of copper.

    "nbn recently acknowledged that it cannot use the Optus Pay TV cables and has decided instead to deploy more advanced fibre to the distribution point (FTTdp) technology, also known as fibre to the driveway or, as nbn is now calling it, fibre to the curb (FTTC). If they have decided that FTTN is not good enough for the people who were to have the NBN delivered via Optus cables then surely they should use FTTdp for everyone? Otherwise, we will be creating a new digital divide - people with the fastest up to date service and others stuck back in the 20th Century".

  5. This post has been deleted by its author

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    All's fair and good, but

    People are telling me about the relative merits of a network that I'm probably never going to see.

    Great slabs of suburbs around our house are not on any nbn rollout map.

    Why not just cut to the chase and install FTTP?

    I'd wait even longer for that.

    1. Faceless Man

      Re: All's fair and good, but

      Because the Coalition needed to be seen as having a different policy to the ALP. And by coming up with the FTTN model they could fudge the figures to make it look like they were saving money.

      And when I say "fudge the figures" to a certain extent I mean "outright lie about costs".

      Still waiting to hear if/when my building will get NBN, and what form it will take. Last document I heard had us changed from the FTTP we were promised would be installed by the end of 2013 to FTTN with work starting before the end of this year. No word from anyone about it, and no sign of any work going on.

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: All's fair and good, but

        No word from anyone about it, and no sign of any work going on.
        But no doubt the money has changed hands so it's all good.

  7. andro


    Its unfortunate that the Libs thought they needed to have a different policy to Labor. With so many people who do understand technology predicting this outcome long before the multi-technology mix was adopted, they could have won a lot more people over saying they agree the original version was a good plan but opting to improve delivery time and costs with comparable technology like FTTC and unlike FTTN.

    The way they have done it, and they way they are cutting so many corners now to get anything rolled out as quickly as possible Deloitte is entirely correct. This will remain a f**kup of epic proportions in costs and lack of fitness for purpose for a very long time. And it will be very hard to spin it any other way to the large and always growing number of Australians who get their news online and not from the traditional printed media.

  8. rtb61

    The LNP's NBN was crafted by Telstra, News Corp, Foxtel and the only focus was to grab billions of tax payer dollars and screw the consequences. I am starting to think the idiot LNP pollies were just scammed believing the bullshit, they were being fed, as far as they were concernded they would trade 15 billion tax payer dollars in exchange for being elected, for blatant News Corp bias in reporting to get them past labour.

    Now as was fore told it is all blowing up in their faces the biggest fraud in Australian history is unravelling before their very eyes as the LNP NBN basically falls apart and now must revert to the Labour plan minus about 20 billion dollars wasted, a phenomenal sum, thrown away to line the pockets of the insanely greedy.

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