Thursday, 04 June 2020 11:56

Increased broadband demand pushes NBN satellite connections past 100,000 mark Featured


More than 100,000 Australian homes and businesses now receiving fast broadband through the National Broadband Network’s the Sky Muster satellite service, with increasing demand for the service as new customers are added to the network.

The Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, Paul Fletcher said on Thursday that Government welcomed the NBN milestone showing that the demand for NBN Sky Muster services has been increasing in recent months, with a new customer in Exmouth, Western Australia taking the number of Sky Muster customers above 100,000.

“The NBN Sky Muster satellites are a critical component of the NBN providing fast broadband to people living across Australia’s sparsely populated 7.7 million square kilometre landmass. They deliver connectivity to the most difficult to reach locations where other broadband offerings are often limited,” Minister Fletcher said.

“Australia’s NBN Co has maintained a strong focus on delivering for regional and remote Australians, including during COVID-19. In March, NBN Co announced a data boost for standard Sky Muster plans and expanded unmetered data offerings for Sky Muster Plus plans. This has supported productivity, social cohesion and connectivity in the regions.”

Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government, the Mark Coulton , said that since it was launched four years ago, NBN Co has continued to develop the Sky Muster service to better meet the needs of consumers and businesses, including through the launch of Sky Muster Plus and the Business Satellite Service.

“Regional connectivity is a priority for the Federal Government,” Minister Coulton said.

“Thanks to the Sky Muster network, Australians in regional areas are now in a much better position to access telehealth services, undertake distance education for themselves and their children, and connect their businesses to global markets.

“As a regular user myself, I encourage Australians to give Sky Muster a go if they are in the Sky Muster footprint and have not yet tried it.”

Minister Fletcher and Minister Coulton commended NBN Co “on its responsiveness to the needs of regional communities during the COVID-19 pandemic”, saying that NBN Co is providing satellite broadband retailers with an additional 45 gigabytes of download data for each standard Sky Muster plan until July 2020.

“It is also providing a $150 million financial relief and assistance fund to help retail service providers assist vulnerable customers affected by COVID-19, and has suspended the managed disconnection of legacy copper services to the 70% of regional premises that can access the NBN via fixed line services and all non-essential work on its fixed wireless network to minimise disruptions to services and keep regional Australians connected.”

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired and is a "volunteer" writer for iTWire. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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