First NBN customers connected in Tasmania

The first customers in Australia have started to receive super-fast broadband on the National Broadband Network (NBN), sparking a clash between two internet providers.

While Internode was the first to confirm a customer had successfully hooked up to the NBN, iPrimus quickly asserted one of their customers was the first Australian to receive the fibreoptic broadband service.

Internode revealed that IT worker Rob Pettman accessed the NBN on Thursday, July 1. Mr Pettman said the speeds are "awesome" and he is receiving 50 megabits per second (mbps), which is the speed he is paying for.

Rival Internet Service Provider (ISP) iPrimus immediately counter-claimed with its own pioneer customer, Mark, who said he was looking forward to streaming TV and movies.

iPrimus general manager of marketing and products Andrew Sims said, "This is a fantastic and significant milestone for Tasmania and iPrimus. The installation, set-up and coordination went well, which is a testament to the hard work and effort of everyone involved."

iiNet also claims to have customers connected to the network, which will eventually connect 90 per cent of Australian homes, workplaces and schools, but has decided not to stake its own claim for a pioneer customer.

The initial connections are part of a trial before the official launch of the service in Tasmania, the companies said.

The NBN will provide broadband speeds of up to 100 mbps, which is 100 times faster than the speeds most customers on ADSL broadband currently receive.

Exetel recently joined iiNet, Internode and iPrimus as an NBN provider in Tasmania.