TPG customers in South Brisbane have received correspondence that ADSL services will be winding down soon, due to a Telstra move to replace copper with high-speed fibre-optic in the area. As a result, TPG will be offering a fibre-optic package that might set the tone for future NBN plans, which TPG haven’t released yet.
Click here for a quick look at the first round of NBN pricing
To provide some background – in 2011, Telstra was asked to move their exchange in the heavily populated South Brisbane area, to make way for the building of a new hospital. Under normal conditions, Telstra does this with minor disruptions, migrating their copper lines to a new central location and getting back to business.
But with the future pointing the way towards high speed fibre optics, Telstra decided to go ahead and upgrade the area with fibre, while they were in there. That’s essentially a good thing. In a regional exchange with very few customers, most people would point to this as good sign of progress.
But South Brisbane is a little different. Because of the high population density, every competitive ADSL2+ provider – including TPG, Eftel, Internode, Dodo and others – set up their own DSLAM, allowing them to provide attractive bundles and attract many customers. Since ADSL only works on copper, pulling out the copper essentially kicks those businesses out, and leaves their customers with only choice for high-speed, fixed line broadband – Telstra and their fibre.
Many of those providers took this issue to the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC), a government watchdog on fair trading. Their argument was that Telstra Wholesale was obliged to provide fixed-line infrastructure to all areas, at a wholesale price. Telstra stalled. While it’s not clear what their argument was, a case could be made that Telstra is obliged to provide copper infrastructure, and that any fibre laid down was for Telstra to keep to itself. This makes sense- Telstra inherited the copper network from Telecom Australia, but they built their fibre networks themselves.
The case has been hung up for a while now, but recent developments suggest that a deal has been brokered. The plans we’ve seen at Compare Broadband are pretty simple - $60 for 200GB, on an 8Mbps connection, or $70/month for 300GB on a white-hot, 30Mbps connection. These look more like Telstra plans than TPG plans, which are typically cheaper and offer more data.
Check out TPG’s best ADSL plans here, or click here for a rundown of TPG's great Super Chat offer.
More interesting is that both plans attract a 12-month contract with $0 setup fee, and a free Wi-Fi modem/router included.
TPG is the sole major provider yet to release their plans for the National Broadband Network (NBN), the government network that will replace copper in the years to come. While these plans seem more attuned to Telstra pricing than TPG’s own, they might provide a look-in to what TPG has in store.
For more information on TPG fibre plans in South Brisbane, please call us 1300 106 571.