A submission to the ACCC's fixed line services declaration review has re-ignited an ancient debate about whether the regulator should pry open Telstra's and Optus' HFC cables. While there's no technical reason wholesale broadband services can't be offered over HFC, retailer interest has been so muted that the competition …
Is this is a trick?
The only reason anyone will want to use the existing HFC infrastructure in a few years is for watching TV. It is almost as useless as dialup for outgoing data, with 1 Mbps upload speeds the norm.
Is this submission designed to impede the fibre rollout? Provided the issue is not used as a way to confuse the public over the merits of fibre, there should be no reason not to examine it.
My chief concern is that if the ACCC requires Optus and Telstra to grant at-cost access to HFC to its competitors, they will demand more compensation from the government for decommissioning HFC when fibre arrives, and that would be a major reason not to open it up. I smell a rat.
Re: Is this is a trick?
This submission makes it pretty obvious why there is almost nothing spent on communications infrastructure in this country.
The HFC cables were strung out by Optus and Telstra respectively in order to provide a cable TV service.
Unlike the copper cables inherited (bought) by Telstra, there was no existing plant to leverage off. The two carriers paid for teh infrastructure, lock, stock and barrel from their own resources.
Yet here we have a 3rd party DEMANDING that they be given access to this infrastructure, paid for by the shareholders of Telsra and Optus, for next to nothing.
Now do you understand why no private company has rolled out modern broadband service that would require investment in new plant? Our regulatory system denies any company that did so any possibility of recovering their investment costs let alone making a commercial return on the investment.
Would YOU build a 100 room apartment block if the moment it was finished you had to rent out most of the rooms to homeless people for the cost of cleaning (maintenance)?
All great from a public good perspective but teh bank might be just a little concerned about how you are going to repay the loan.
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