Wednesday, 19 October 2016 13:41

Vodafone to offer NBN-based broadband by end-2017 Featured

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Vodafone has finally bitten the NBN bug and announced it will offer homes and businesses a fixed broadband service before the end of 2017 to complement its mobile network.

Delivering the telecommunication industry's premier annual address, the Charles Todd Oration in Sydney today, Vodafone chief executive Iñaki Berroeta said the service would be delivered via the NBN.

"Whether it's at home, work, or in between, Australians want to be always connected to stream music and video, send messages, make purchases, or grow their business," Berroeta said.

"We know that customers love data, with around 14,000 terabytes used on the Vodafone mobile network each month, and their appetite for fast data is continuing to grow. The NBN will allow us to deliver more data to our customers.

"Not only are Australians consuming more and more data, they are increasingly using mobile and fixed broadband interchangeably. Consumers are converged, but the telco market isn't and we want to change this.

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Iñaki Berroeta delivering the Charles Todd Oration in Sydney on Wednesday.

"Customers want seamless connection, easy-to-understand plans and reliable service – and that's the proposition we'll be bringing to Australia."

The Vodafone chief said it was the correct time for his company to expand and include a broadband service.

"We have a strong 4G network which covers more than 22 million Australians and is enjoyed by 5.5 million customers, the NBN rollout is gaining momentum and there is strong consumer demand for continuous connectivity," he said.

"It's anticipated that four million Australian homes will be NBN-ready by the end of next year, so the project is reaching a scale where it provides the platform to deliver a service that complements our mobile network.

"This is a natural progression for our business, and we expect that through a fixed broadband service, Vodafone will become an even stronger competitive force in the Australian telecommunications market."

Berroeta claimed the broadband move had been driven by strong customer demand.

"We've heard the message loud and clear, both from our existing customers and Australians who don't currently have a service with us, that they want Vodafone to offer home and office fixed broadband as well as mobile," he said.

"Just as we have done for mobile, we see a real opportunity to make a difference in the fixed broadband market by delivering great service and value for customers.

"Because we will be investing in a brand new capability, we will be able to deliver a better customer experience and a market-leading price for both consumers and businesses.

"If you look at how we've been able to shift the mobile market for the benefit of customers, including unlimited calls and texts, flat $10 per gigabyte data coverage and accessible international roaming through $5 Roaming, we plan to bring the same transparent, fair approach to fixed broadband."

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Sam Varghese

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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.

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