Author's Opinion

The views in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of iTWire.

Have your say and comment below.

Wednesday, 10 November 2021 11:07

Malcolm Turnbull needs to explain dodgy cut-down NBN rollout figures Featured

Malcolm Turnbull needs to tell Australians why figures were hidden in the 2013 study. Malcolm Turnbull needs to tell Australians why figures were hidden in the 2013 study. Courtesy YouTube

Malcolm Turnbull has some explaining to do about the costs of the NBN this morning, after Guardian Australia reported figures hidden in a report commissioned by him showed a full-fibre NBN or a multi-technology mix would have cost about the same.

The figures that were touted at the time the plan was changed were about one-third of what they actually were, the report claimed, with the cost blowout since the 2013 report making both plans cost about the same.

The original plan, conceived by Labor, called for 93% of premises to get fibre, and the rest to be served through satellite or fixed wireless. This was changed in 2013 after the Coalition came to power.

Turnbull did a switcheroo after commissioning a study; under this, the majority of homes received fibre-to-the-node, estimated at costing between $600 and $650 each. Also in the revised plan was the use of hybrid fibre coaxial, which was put at between $800 and $850 per premise.

The study claimed that Labor's plan would eat up $74 billion and be completed only in 2024, while the Coalition's cut-down plan would only cost $41 billion and be over and done with by 2020.

But the Guardian report said upgrade issues had resulted in a three-fold cost blowout, with FttN connections now costing $2330 and HFC at $2572 in the latest NBN Co corporate plan.

Given Turnbull's eagerness to comment on everything under the sun these days, one would expect the former prime minister to come out with a statement – and a lengthy one, too.

But given that he is not exactly shown in a positive light in this report, maybe Turnbull will stay silent for once.

The Guardian report said that even if one factored in the infrastructure costs which were being added to installation costs by the NBN Co since 2015, the costs for FttN and HFC were more than double the estimated cost.

In September last year, the NBN Co outdid even the most skilled acrobat in Cirq du Soleil by doing an about-turn and announcing that it would spend an additional $3.5 billion to provide fibre to most homes by 2023.

Communications Minister Paul Fletcher said of this backflip: "From the outset, the plan set out in our 2013 Strategic Review was to get the network rolled out as quickly as possible – and then deliver upgrades when there was demand for them."

If you believe that, then you will also believe that I have a bridge in my backyard that connects me directly to Tasmania. And I am willing to sell it for a small sum. All offers welcome.

Please join our community here and become a VIP.

Subscribe to ITWIRE UPDATE Newsletter here
JOIN our iTWireTV our YouTube Community here


It's all about Webinars.

Marketing budgets are now focused on Webinars combined with Lead Generation.

If you wish to promote a Webinar we recommend at least a 3 to 4 week campaign prior to your event.

The iTWire campaign will include extensive adverts on our News Site and prominent Newsletter promotion and Promotional News & Editorial. Plus a video interview of the key speaker on iTWire TV which will be used in Promotional Posts on the iTWire Home Page.

Now we are coming out of Lockdown iTWire will be focussed to assisting with your webinatrs and campaigns and assassistance via part payments and extended terms, a Webinar Business Booster Pack and other supportive programs. We can also create your adverts and written content plus coordinate your video interview.

We look forward to discussing your campaign goals with you. Please click the button below.



iTWire TV offers a unique value to the Tech Sector by providing a range of video interviews, news, views and reviews, and also provides the opportunity for vendors to promote your company and your marketing messages.

We work with you to develop the message and conduct the interview or product review in a safe and collaborative way. Unlike other Tech YouTube channels, we create a story around your message and post that on the homepage of ITWire, linking to your message.

In addition, your interview post message can be displayed in up to 7 different post displays on our the site to drive traffic and readers to your video content and downloads. This can be a significant Lead Generation opportunity for your business.

We also provide 3 videos in one recording/sitting if you require so that you have a series of videos to promote to your customers. Your sales team can add your emails to sales collateral and to the footer of their sales and marketing emails.

See the latest in Tech News, Views, Interviews, Reviews, Product Promos and Events. Plus funny videos from our readers and customers.


Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

Share News tips for the iTWire Journalists? Your tip will be anonymous




Guest Opinion

Guest Interviews

Guest Reviews

Guest Research

Guest Research & Case Studies

Channel News