A network of new services, and an increased reliance on mobile phone and internet providers, have seen many Australians struggle to keep up with the ongoing crisis, according to a new report by a major Australian think tank.
Key points:A new report says the spectrum shortage in NSW has made it harder for people to get connectedThe report, commissioned by the National Broadband Network (NBN), says there is no clear strategy for getting people connected to the networkA key problem for the rollout is that people can’t use a mobile phone to call in urgent emergenciesThe report says there has been a significant drop in the number of people accessing the internet and the mobile phone networks have been strained as a resultThe problem, it says, is that there is little clear strategy to address the network needs, and that people are being put at increased risk of spectrum failures.
The National Broadcom Network (NBN), the first state-funded NBN to be fully privatised, was due to be launched in October.
But with the rollout still delayed, the report released today says the network is struggling to meet the demand of the NBN rollout, with “significant delays” in connecting people.
The report by the Australian National University’s National Broadcasters’ Association (NBUA) and Communications Industry Association (CICA) says there have been major delays in connecting the network, as people have had to rely on mobile phones to call home and in urgent situations, with no service to the home.
“In some areas, there has not been an upgrade to mobile phone services and, in some, no mobile service was available at all,” the report says.
“Even in some of the regions where service was upgraded, the rollout of mobile phone coverage was not up to par with the demand.”
The report notes that the network has also been hit by a significant increase in network congestion as a consequence of the network shortage.
“Some of the congestion issues we identified have led to people using a phone to make calls, but when they did, they could not access the phone network to make those calls because the phone networks had been overloaded and the network was down,” the authors say.
“This increased congestion can lead to a ‘down time’ in the network which is when the network becomes less reliable.”
The report also notes that some areas of the state where there is significant capacity issues have experienced network congestion during the month of September due to the deployment of the National High Speed Broadband (NHS) network.
“The NBUA and CICA report states that there have also been some significant delays in the rollout, despite the NBN’s promised upgrades to its existing network.”
These delays have occurred despite the availability of more than 1,600 mobile broadband connections in a number of the communities, with access to the services being available 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” the NBUHAs report says, “with many people still unable to access their services and many other services still not being available.
“It also highlights the problem of people not being able to connect to the NBN, which is being forced to turn to mobile services such as hotspots, where it has to wait for the signal to return before the person can use the internet.”
There are significant gaps in the NBN system that make it difficult for people who cannot access the NBN to connect and access the services they need,” the study says.
A spokesperson for NBN said the network rollout had been “excellent” and the NBN would continue to provide its customers with “the best and most reliable broadband network available”.”
We have been working hard to get this network up and running, which includes investing $1 billion to extend the network to more rural and remote areas and expanding the footprint of our fibre network to enable further broadband deployment to more areas,” he said.”
We are delivering on this promise and look forward to the continued deployment of fibre to the node in the state and region.
“Topics:communications,network-management,internet-technology,disaster-management-and-corporate-action,internet,internetworking,internet services,internet security,internet service provider,nbn,nsw,australiaFirst posted October 24, 2018 08:01:24Contact Adam PurdyMore stories from New South Wales