Tasmania in line for broadband revolution

From a report in The Sunday Tasmanian,
7 January 2007

Tasmanian homes could one day have broadband internet access through fibre-optic cables, at speeds 400 times faster than those available at present. The cables would also support digital television, movies on demand, computer games and video conferencing.

Electricity supply company, Aurora Energy, in conjunction with the Tasmanian government and the University of Tasmania, is to conduct a trial in 1,000 homes in Hobart and 200 homes in Devonport.

Aurora has been building a fibre-optic communications network to its sub-stations to manage its electricity distribution. This cable can also be used to provide broadband to homes. A successful trial, beaming broadband along the powerlines from the sub-stations, has been completed in two Hobart suburbs and in Burnie.

The next trial will involve laying fibre-optic cable along suburban streets and then using the electricity network to access the home from the nearest powerpole.

The domestic roll-out will link with the fibre-optic cable which has already been laid across Bass Strait and in trenches next to the gas pipeline from the north of Tasmania to Hobart, Launceston, Devonport and Burnie.

The new network will also provide competition to Telstra, which currently charges ten times more per kilometre for trans-Bass Strait services than for services between Melbourne and Sydney.

Fibre-optic broadband for Tasmania

From a report in The Mercury,
18 December 2006

The Tasmanian government has announced that it is moving forward with its plan to develop fibre-optic broadband competition in the State.

A number of telecommunications companies have submitted proposals for new and improved services that will reduce costs. Treasurer Michael Aird said that the submissions are being examined and 2007 will see changes which will also be attractive to business investors.

The Tasmanian government has already invested $23 million for a fibre-optic cable that runs alongside Tasmania’s new natural gas network and a further $7 million for the fibre-optic cable that runs alongside the Basslink power cable.

See the Communications page for related information.