Everything You Need to Know About NBN’s Fixed Wireless Connection

  • What is NBN Fixed Wireless
  • How Fast is NBN Fixed Wireless
  • Where Is NBN Fixed Wireless Available?

In the very slim chance that you’ve missed it, the Australian government launched the National Broadband Network last 2009. It is a massive infrastructure project that aims to improve the current internet system in the country by making high-speed connections accessible to more residents. Call it the democratisation of high-speed broadband if you will.

NBN currently offers two types of connection: Fixed Line and Fixed Wireless. These two categories differ in the technology used for signal transmission.

Fixed Line connections, for example, mainly use fibre optic cables that are sometimes combined with copper wires. Data transmitted through fixed physical lines travel in the speed of light, which is a huge selling point of the service. The connection is also more stable because the setup is less susceptible to natural factors such as erosion, lightning, and inclement weather.

On the other hand, a Fixed Wireless connection uses 4G radio signals from a nearby tower when transmitting data to end-users. These signals are received through a satellite dish set up on top of the roof of a residential or commercial building.

In this article, we will zero in on NBN’s Fixed Wireless Connection and everything you need to know about it.

NBN Fixed Wireless in a Nutshell

Given that a Fixed Wireless connection uses radio signals from a nearby tower when transmitting data, this type of connection is ideal for areas where the premises are too far from the point of connection. This is why this type of connection is commonly offered in rural areas.

The setup works by fitting an NBN-supplied outdoor antenna to the subscriber’s premises (usually on the roof), which will then receive signals from the nearest tower that can be located as far as 14 kilometres.

An NBN connection box is also necessary and has to be installed at the exact point where your outdoor antenna enters the premises. The device requires electricity to operate, which means you may lose access to your internet services if there is a power outage.

Several areas all over Australia are already serviceable by NBN’s Fixed Wireless connection. If you’ve been advised that your neighbourhood or place of business is getting this type of infrastructure but you’re not sure if the service is already available, you may check through this NBN rollout map.

Installation Process

For NBN’s Fixed Wireless connection, there are two types of installation: standard and non-standard.

  • Standard Installation

To initiate the installation, the first thing you need to do is call a service provider of your choice. The telco will be the one to coordinate a Fixed Wireless signal test with NBN. When the signal is acquired, the technician will proceed with the installation of your NBN outdoor antenna.

If you don’t have a service provider yet, here’s a list of the various NBN broadband plans offered by the leading telcos.

  • Non-standard Installation

Non-standard installation is typically requested when a Fixed Wireless signal can’t be detected from the main premises where an internet connection is needed. To make the installation possible, NBN will check if a different signal can be reached at another suitable location.

Keep in mind, though, that only an NBN-approved installer is authorised to locate an ideal site for the antenna or set up a ground-mounted pole if necessary. However, this additional step means the installation won’t be completed in one visit.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to call for a technician to install a Fixed Wireless connection?

Yes. Both the NBN outdoor antenna and connection box have to be installed by an approved installer, so you need to schedule an appointment with a technician. You may also coordinate with your service provider to make sure that the schedule works for you.

What’s an ideal location for the NBN Fixed Wireless equipment?

A few things you need to remember when choosing a location for your NBN equipment is that it should be cool, dry, and well ventilated. It also needs to be away from busy areas of the premises to prevent getting knocked off its spot but accessible enough so you can easily check the indicator lights.

You can pre-identify an area that suits these requirements. However, keep in mind that the technician may recommend a different location depending on various environmental factors or the complexity of installing the required hardware in your chosen area.

Can I access NBN’s network from a local telecommunications tower?

The said tower needs to have an NBN presence for you to be able to access the network. This can be determined by your technician on your scheduled date of installation.