Why can Bigpond give me ADSL2, but other broadband providers can't?

After finding out about super-fast ADSL2+ broadband internet, a lot of people discover they can get the service through Bigpond, but other internet providers don’t service their area. Why is this the case? Bigpond’s ADSL2+ plans are often not as competitive as those of TPG, Netspace, iPrimus etc., so should you be feeling as though life isn’t fair?

Telstra own the major telephone infrastructure in Australia, and as Bigpond is their affiliated broadband provider, they can provide ADSL2+ in any location where they’ve enabled the phone exchange to do so. For a different internet provider to be able to offer ADSL2+ at a phone exchange, they need to pay Bigpond a large amount of money to put the necessary DSLAM equipment into an exchange.

As it’s a large financial investment to enable each separate phone exchange for ADSL2+, the other Internet Service Providers generally choose to install their equipment in areas that are densely populated, so they can then make their money back as quickly as possible. A company will usually start enabling exchanges from the centre of a large metropolitan city (like Sydney or Melbourne) and then move outwards towards the surrounding suburbs.

If you live in a regional area, Bigpond will usually be your only option for ADSL2+ (if it’s available), and price is often prohibitive, so in this instance getting a fast ADSL 1500kbps or 8000kbps speed will be your best option. If you live in a rural area you probably won’t be able to get ADSL2+ at all, that is until the National Broadband Network is built.

It’s always worth calling Optus if none of the companies who use the Telstra infrastructure can provide ADSL2+ in your area, as they often use their own separate telephone infrastructure.

Also worth noting is the fact that just because one provider can’t give you ADSL2+ at your local phone exchange, doesn’t mean they all can’t. Each provider enables the exchanges they want to, and often it’s quite random which ones each unique provider sets up for ADSL2+.

If you want to find out if a specific provider can supply you with ADSL2+, give them a call and either give them your landline telephone number or home address, so they can ascertain what is available in your location.