Gigabit speeds round the corner for inner-city NBN customers

With uptake of Hybrid Fibre Co-axial (HFC) NBN connections by Australians confirmed to have been much greater than NBN Co initially anticipated, the broadband network has experienced numerous connection delays for customers in premises with HFC - and, ultimately, was forced to put a hold on new HFC installations in December 2017.

Homes with existing NBN HFC services use DOCSIS 3.0; however, the NBN Co Network Termination Device (NTD) - the NBN box sitting inside a home - already supports the newer standard, with NBN Co saying most end users should have a immediate access to the upgrade once it is live in their service area.

He clarified, however, that enabling higher speeds, which DOCSIS is capable of, is not NBN Co's core focus "at this present time".

"NBN Co has worked hard on the introduction of DOCSIS 3.1 onto the HFC network and we are very proud to be able to launch the technology onto the network", NBN chief technology officer Ray Owen said.

NBN Co in 2015 first confirmed it planned to eventually enable DOCIS 3.1 for HFC connections, which doubles the downstream capacity available thanks to improved spectral efficiency and reduces the need to install additional optical nodes.

DOCSIS stands for Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification, and although the latest version of this worldwide specification (3.1) was first developed in 2013, it's only seen implementation by global telecomm companies in the last two years.

NBN Co has previously said DOCSIS 3.1 could enable up to 10Gbps downloads and 1Gbps uploads. With DOCSIS 3.1 NTDs already in the homes of those with NBN HFC connections, all NBN has to do is update the line cards in the cable modem termination systems (CMTS) and upgrade the software.

NBN had attained download speeds of 1Gbps and upload speeds of 100Mbps during a lab trial of DOCSIS 3.1 in June a year ago.

Australian golfer Jarrod Lyle dies after long battle with cancer
He thanked his many "friends around the world, whether they're spectators, whether they're golfers, whether they're marshals". DeChambeau was finishing up a practice round at Bellerive, where on Thursday he begins play in the season's final major.

This is most likely to be HFC areas that are outside the 18-month activation window and have seen take-up rates in excess of 75 percent of premises.

NBN said the technology would double the downstream capacity on the network, helping ensure there is sufficient capacity available to meet demand.

"The first is what we call "tap up", which includes everything on NBN Co's side of the network, from the pit in the street right through to the exchanges that connect to the wider internet".

That pause was lifted in April in a limited capacity, and now NBN Co has announced that it has fast-tracked the rollout of a new technological standard that hopes to alleviate HFC capacity issues. "We will work with NBN Co to leverage this advanced network infrastructure to enable Australia's digital future".

NBN CFO Stephen Rue revealed during Q3 financial results in May that NBN spent AU$1 billion in capital expenditure on HFC in the last nine months due to "design, optimisation, construction activity".

Cost per premises (CPP) during the quarter to March 31 was AU$2,404 for HFC, with the network bringing in AU$85 million in revenue during the period.

"Our collaboration continues to demonstrate that HFC has a strong future".

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