(Australian Associated Press)
NBN Co may soon tell households what speeds they can actually get on the network if their broadband providers fail to do so.
Chief executive Bill Morrow says NBN Co, the company rolling out the network, currently informs retail services providers (RSPs) of preliminary speed ranges for premises when it declares an area “ready for service”.
The government-owned company then confirms the speed to the RSPs once more tests are conducted, but that information is not being passed on to customers.
“We do what we call a sync-rate test and that will tell us what the maximum megabit per second is … and we send that report to the RSPs,” Mr Morrow said at the company’s first-quarter results briefing on Tuesday.
“We think they should be publishing this to their respective customers and then that way we don’t get into trying to police or supervise something that they are responsible for.”
He said NBN Co was working with the government to determine whether or not it should “step forward” and publish the information if the RSPs don’t do so themselves.
“What we are seeing as we evolve is that NBN needs to play a stronger role in that,” Mr Morrow said.
“It comes with a lot of mixed feelings because we don’t want to confuse the consumer anymore than they are.”
Last week, Telstra and Optus offered to compensate customers after failing to provide them with the NBN speeds they had promised.
Mr Morrow said it was up to the RSPs to ensure consumers get and use what they pay for.
While the relationship between RSPs and NBN Co still has a long way to go, there have been improvements, with the number of consumer complaints falling 26 per cent in the three months to September, Mr Morrow added.
“We are starting to see some of the breakthrough occur which gives us confidence that we will have much of the NBN-caused issues behind us,” he said.
NBN Co said it was on track to complete the rollout of the network by 2020, after adding 708,000 new homes and businesses to its system and more than doubling revenue in the September quarter.
Most of the growth in new customers comes on the back of a lift in fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) connections, with the number of FTTN users now exceeding fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) users, the company said.
The NBN reached a total of 6.4 million premises as of September 30, up from 3.2 million homes and businesses at the same time last year, helping network revenue more than double to $405 million.