Abbott Thinks 1Gbps NBN Is 'Utterly Implausible'

Not Bill Gates Leader of the Opposition Tony Abbott today spoke up about the NBN announcement this morning that has promised to deliver speeds 10 times what was previously promised. Despite repeated admissions that he's not a tech head, he has announced that he believes 1Gbps speeds from the NBN are "utterly implausible".

Abbott said at a conference in Penrith:

"It's very hard to take seriously a government which suddenly pulls yet another technological rabbit out of a hat just because it's under enormous pressure in the closing stages of an election campaign."

"This idea that 'hey presto' we are suddenly going to get ten times the speed from something that isn’t even built yet I find utterly implausible."

While the timing of the 1Gbps announcement is a little cringe-worthy, it's certainly not unexpected. Fibre is certainly capable of offering 1Gbps peak speeds without any updates - it's the hardware at the end of the cable that needs to be upgraded to offer those speeds. If NBNCo are installing 1Gbps head ends as they build the network, then the 1Gbps peak speed is not only plausible, but totally realistic.

What's really interesting about the entire broadband issue i that it's become the only real point of difference between the two major parties this election. The question of whether or not it will influence voters is still yet to be seen though...


    Well with him being a tech head im sure we can value his opinion.... oh wait

    I heard somewhere that optic fibre can handle speeds of 64 terabits per second so there is no problem there, how can someone who doesn't understand anything about broadband technology really say that this technology is utterley implausible. This country will be fucked if this loser gets into power and we will never have the oppitunity to have one if the best internet networks in the world and i would be proud of this country if we could get int he top 5 fastest internet speeds in the world.

      HOLY CRAP! Imagine being able to download at the rate of 8TBps. That's just insane. Give it a decade or two, we'll eventually get there!

    they had to announce it; the coalition basically announced a similar baseline speed for billions less

      Actually no they never but obviously you are a weirdo by supporting the coalition

    I;m sorry but if this is what I'll be paying under the NBN, I'll stick with ADSL 2 thanks...

      those prices look good to me who is on a shit house Telstra rim at 3MB's, ( I really egt 512K) and pay 100 bucks a month from Telstra as I have no choice.

      Get a grip, those prices is get cheaper as more people get on it!

      Vote for the future, not the past!

      Try these ones

      Cheapest option 25/2 Mbps with 15gig downloads $30

      Dude for literally no lag (except for server lag, oh how I hate that), I'd sell my freakin car and walk everywhere. I wouldn't need to go anywhere anyway because I'd be inside 24/7 playing online with no lag. But seriously, price is no concern for those who would actually benefit from that crazyfast speed.

      The prices look acceptable to me. I'd be on a 6 or 7 equivalent plan if i were to sign up.
      This is hypothetically speaking since it hasnt been rolled out where I am yet... :p

      Those plans Alex aren't very good. You should have a look at Internodes:

      Can you imagine what they're charge for a super premium 1Gbps connection... Totally in agreement with you here!

      Get over yourself, I happen not to live on an ADSL2+ exchange (and i doubt it will ever be upgraded) and I pay that much for ADSL1 8mbps, so if you think you can't spend that for 50-100mpbs then maybe you should be considering Abbott's hotch potch of a waste of copper.

      its not all that bad the prices are better than anything i can get in my little spot in tasmania

    “This idea that ‘hey presto’ we are suddenly going to get ten times the speed from something that isn’t even built yet I find utterly implausible.”

    Uhm... part of it IS built already you bloody moron. They have rolled out a segment in Tasmania already and hey guess where the test came from!!! Any wonder this clown isn't fit to run the country, and won't get the chance either.

    "1Gbps to check and send emails.. that's unpossible!"

    so all of a sudden he's an expert is he?

    the timing is actually perfectly appropriate. after the libs announced their counter plan, emphasising how much cheaper than the NBN it was, it was only pertinent for NBN co to accentuate just how future proofed and capable the NBN infrastructure will be. i.e. VALUE for money. future proofing has been a cornerstone of the NBN policy from day one, and it was something seemingly lacking from the lib's counter.

    also, who cares?

      People who vote on ninemsn arent going to be influenced by the NBN? Im shocked sir, SHOCKED!

    Fiber optics can handle infinite speeds (information travels at the speed of light). It's the terminals and switches at the end of the cables where the real limitations are. That said, it is ENTIRELY feasible that the NBN would deliver speeds up to 1GB per second.

      Beg to differ. (I was first installing Fibre in 1983). Speed across fibre is dependent on refreactive index of the fibre - typical in the market is around 1.5 which means speed is 2/3 of speed of light. Fibre needs to be repeated every 30-70 kms, and you delay about 5-10 uSecs on each transition. The Suburban deployments will be a rats nest of short links, and the moment some bozo runs a backhoe through the fibre, andit gets respliced it, the quality drops - also gigabit hardware will add to the cost.

      Finally, all of this is very well, but the international links aren't being increased proportionaly. Like having a Ferrari to go to the end of the street.

    10x quicker, and yet at the same cost of $46Bn??

    Whats the catch?? Did someone just give Labor some massive bulk buy deals on 1Gbit head ends?

    No offence, but I've had the pleasure of being involved in installing the fibre between control buildings at my work. 1Gbit is plausable between long stretches point to point and without splices, but realistically in this application for running fibre into every single house, the moment you splice into each property, you'll meet with transmission line losses.

    So, those at the end of the street and furthest from the repeater - tough luck...

    I wish good luck to Gillard and another attempt to fool 90% of the population. While I'm not a libs voter, this just looks like and smells like BS....

      When you're cabling up an entire country you can get some pretty good bulk buy discounts.

    Anyone see the 7:30 report and the dudes explanation of peak net to Abbott?
    Apparently it's not a difficult thing to understand, Tony...
    Just the man explaining it... Didn't.

    $43b= $2000 per person in Australia.

    Bit much to expect from a cash strapped government for faster broadband if you ask me...

    Surely the answer is high speed broadband in heavily populated areas and business hubs, and cheaper albeit slower services elsewhere.

      I couldn't think of a worse idea.

      if you haven't noticed, Australia already has a big problem of all of its population being packed into a few, overcrowded cities. having equal opportunity internet everywhere could be one effective way of stopping this, and tempting people to spread out.

      the whole point being... with high speed net, you don't all have to pack yourselves into one CBD everyday to communicate.

    I remember hearing on the 7pm project last night, Gillard said that the cost is approx $5000 for every household.

    I'm happy with Optus fibre internet, so can I just have the $5000 in cash wired to my preferred account??

    Hold on. Just one teensy, weensy problem.
    How much is this going to raise the cost?
    Are they magically going to get all this new tech for free? I don't think so. Believe me, this is going to blow out WAY beyond 46 Billion. Read this article as well about the NBN. Written by an IT executive.

    @ Alex - Try these on for size
    iiNet has become more expensive over the last couple of years. Their ADSL is not as competitive as it used to be and as anyone knows, prices on the NBN will come down as take up increases and competition improves.

    @ Ward - No offence, but being involved in the installation of fibre in your workplace hardly makes you an expert on the technology.
    Not only is 1Gbps feasible, realistic and operational on fibre networks all around the world (been to europe lately?) but your wikipedia 'reference' doesn't prove any of the technical limitations you mention and instead states that most fibre rollouts operate at 10-40Gbps and that the theoretical (achieved in labs) capabilities of fibre head into the Pbps range. Maybe you should have read the article before you tried to use it as proof of your poorly informed opinion.

    This is not Gillard and Conroy trying to win election points (although it will probably help). This is Mike Quigley, the guy who has already built parts of the network in test sites around the country, telling it how it is.

    It's all too convenient that they suddenly announce this, not only during the election but also at a time when fierce debate between both parties are occurring regarding the NBN.

    Abbott may be wrong about the fact that it is not technologically feasible however I reckon he is right on the point that its NEVER going to happen.
    Most probably hospitals and schools will get the high speed and homes will get a significantly restricted version for a highly inflated price.

    Let me guess, "peak speed" that will hardly be hit by anyone because of all the factors involved?

    The Labour NBN will only go 10 times faster than previously thought if Conroy's filter isn't on it.

    There are a number of considerations at play here.

    The point Tony Abbott was making is Labors claim that they will over deliver on the NBN was a desperate political stunt. How can you make something that doesn't exist yet go faster.

    I can fit an imaginary supercharger to my imaginary ferrari to make it go faster... but at the end of the day it is still imaginary.

    Given the ALP can't build a toilet for under half a million dollars, what hope have we got that they will get fibre to the node rolled out on time and on budget as promised.

    The video conference stunt today was a joke. Tandberg, Polycom and Sony HD VC gear requires 2mb of bandwidth for a decent experience. The medical demo today was no better than Skype, which is here, today, now and wont cost $43bn to achieve.

    I'm all for faster internet, but thats the job of free enterprise, not bloated government bureaucrats. Stop and think for a second of the cost to taxpayers of the NBN relaunch today. I noticed Julia had to press a big blue button to "switch on" the NBN. I'd like to know how many of MY TAX DOLLARS were wasted on buying a fake button. How much was wasted on the launch video ? How much was wasted on flying Conroy and his cronies to Tasmania. It's typical of the Governments absolute ABUSE of taxpayers money.

    Now God (or deity of choice) forbid that this Government controlled entity gets to forcibly take control of the ENTIRE INTERNET BACKBONE in Australia. This great gift to the nation, will hand Conroy the ability to implement his hideous filter and there will be nothing anyone can do about it. Every byte of data through the backbone can be scanned and stored and then arbitrarily blocked.

    I can hear George Orwell turning in his grave !

    Go look it up Kids.... Big Brother wasn't just a lame reality show !

      yeah lets vote for the religious nutter, that makes more sense

      Thank-you Alan for injecting some critical thinking into these comments about the NBN. Too many people bickering about speed and Tony's lack of technical literacy, and not enough people thinking about the extreme inefficiencies of big government. All the Labour announcements are smoke and mirrors and Tony is happy to leave it to free enterprise, but politically he has to offer SOMETHING.

      The definition of politics: poly meaning many. Tics - blood sucking parasite.

    Maybe they said it would be 10X slower for a reason when the NBN was announced.
    Just so they could go SHAZAAAM 1Gbps at the election.
    Tony Abbott can't really compete with the NBN with his crappy wireless with slow upload speeds

    The funny thing is that Giz hasn't seemed to think things through. Abbot may be right. Sure fiber has amazing through-put. but the "last mile" (ie. to your house) is copper. This too could manage it.. and it's always fun to laugh and point at some-one, but your looking at things in isolation.
    As I'm aware of it each house will NOT have its own dedicated fibre. Each run of optical fibre will service an unknown number of residences (and businesses), this means the increadible through-put will be shared by LOTS of people, plus any overheads (switching).
    Announcing an order of magnitude difference is a campain stunt pure and simple.
    Chances are the only way you'd see theese speeds is if very few actually went with the NBN, or you live in a low density area that will be on the NBN.

    Like I said Abbot may not know tech but he may be right when he says that it is utterly implausible that a system developped and promoted as 100Mbps would allow 1Gbps.

    If Labour were comitted to 1Gbps expect there to be a fairly massive increase to the cost of the NBN.

      Eh, no Rappo. Fibre to the home means the "last mile" to your house is also going to be fibre. That is all.

      Rappo, there won't be any copper - fibre everywhere - ever 32 houses or so will share the "last mile". So assuming say 14Tbps max per fiber, that is 500 Gbps roughly max to each home. That won't happen of course, but whatever it is going to be, it will be a hell of a lot faster than Abbott's hodgepodge at 12 Mbps or whatever.

    Heres something that people may not be thinking about.

    Yes it's estimated at costing $43b. But that's spread out over an expected 8 year build time, not an all upfront cost.

    Now I would expect the government to be back in surplus well before the 8 years are up.

      Internode and iiNet already have 100mbps connections for sale in Tasmania.

      Imaginary Network? No.
      Implausible Speeds? Nope.
      Trusting the Coalition on technology choices? uh-oh.
      Abbott? Not a good idea.

        I agree completey. I'm voting for ALP, was putting that post up for all the people concerned about going further into debt.

        I want some of this high speed broadband action, need it badly where I am.

      Labor? Surplus?

        I'm pretty sure that if any Government gets in surplus, it means that they aren't spending our tax money enough on infrastructure etc.

        The NBN can't be left up to private enterprises either guys. If none of the competition is going to build it, there's hardly any incentive to offer fibre. The average man on the street doesn't care about it. The way Internode and the other ISP's are doing things now suits them just fine. The only way for anywhere near 93% of Australia to get Fibre within the next decade would be through the NBN. If it'll cost the government $43 billion, then there's no way the ISP's would be able to roll it out in the same amount of time - they don't have that kind of money to spend on a technology that the average man on the street doesn't understand.

    Abbott proves once again he and the Liberals have no clue about IT and broadband.

    What is worse, they don't care.

    They are quite happy to go back to the Howard era of do nothing (for 10 years) and let people like Sol Trujillo dictate policy.

    The active components of the NBN are less than 5% of the total cost. The majority (>90%) of the cost is the laying of the fibre, trenches etc etc..lots of labour and works.

    TransACT in Canberra are already doing 1Gpbs in their new subdivisions using the same technology that NBN have selected. Its very real and here today!

    10Gpbs is already in the labs and slated for delivery within 2 years. This is simply a volume/cost equation. Just like disk drives, remember only a year or two back how much a 1TB drive would have cost. now they are less than $100..amazing!

    Also just look how fast your internet costs have dropped in the last 5 years and how much more you now get for your dollar, what makes anyone think that decrease will stop any time soon? Technology simply gets faster and cheaper, and it will continue to do so for a long time to come.

    The coalition promise is nonsense, a waste of money and something that would resign Austrlia to a technological dark age.

    Its nice to have a long term vision actually be enacted by a Government for a change, the positive effiects of which will be felt for decades.

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