220,000 VICTORIANS WANT BROADBAND NETWORK NOW

Posted on 23. Jun, 2010 in News

New research shows more than 219,000 Victorian households and businesses would take up an NBN grade service if it was offered today, Information and Communication Technology Minister John Lenders said today.

Mr Lenders said the research undertaken by Access Economics showed that an estimated 13 per cent of Victoria’s telecommunications market would take up NBN grade services immediately with strong further growth predicted in the following years.

“Victoria’s appetite for high-quality broadband continues to exceed market supply with over half a million households and businesses aspiring for greater speeds than what they can currently get,” Mr Lenders said.

“The report estimated that in December more than 219,000 households and businesses would take up an NBN grade service if it was offered – about 13 per cent of the current market – with this demand expected to grow to about 50 per cent of the market in just three years.

“Telecommunications sector in Victoria continued to show consistent growth. In December 2009, Victorian telecommunications expenditure had increased to $10.8 billion – up from $10 billion in December 2006.

“This figure is expected to increase by a further 20 per cent by 2014/2015, growing faster than GSP at an average rate of 3.7 per cent per annum.”

Mr Lenders said the demand for mobile and broadband services were only just behind this strong growth.

“While the decline in use of traditional telephone services and dialup continues, we are seeing huge growth in the take up of mobile services and broadband as our economy utilises the latest available technology,” Mr Lenders said.

“Dialup and broadband sectors now account for a quarter of the telecommunications market, up from eight per cent from 2006. Broadband expenditure alone has increased by 50 per cent, from $1.4 billion to $2.1 billion – 20 per cent of the total telecommunications market.

“This report is a great benchmark for Victoria and Australia, to see just how much Victorian households and businesses need and will benefit from the NBN.

“Victoria not only offers the demand for high speed services but we also offer the NBN Co a highly skilled workforce and a continuous pool of talented graduates they will need for this major project.

“We’re seeing an estimated 1.14 million fixed broadband subscribers in Victoria, up from 1.05 million in 2007 – as well as more than six million subscribers to mobile voice.

Mr Lenders said the research also showed a big jump to mobile services largely due to access to mobile broadband, with 870,000 users taking up a dedicated mobile broadband service and another one in four mobile phone users accessing the internet from their phones.

“We’re seeing an estimated 1.14 million fixed broadband subscribers in Victoria, up from 1.05 million in 2007 – as well as more than six million subscribers to mobile voice,” Mr Lenders said.

“A further 870,000 customers access mobile broadband with a laptop or other handheld device.”

The report suggests that with the coverage of basic broadband near saturation in Victoria, the market has been focussed on upgrading to faster speeds. The market segment for broadband services with speeds greater than 50 megabits per second is expected to grow significantly with the NBN rollout, with the report suggesting more than one million subscribers by 2014/2015.

Mr Lenders said Victoria’s ICT leadership and skilled workforce made it the ideal place to host the hundreds of highly skilled jobs created through the Commonwealth Government’s National Broadband Network project.

Early work as part of the rollout of the National Broadband Network has already commenced in Brunswick and South West Gippsland.

To download a copy of the report, visit

http://www.mmv.vic.gov.au/Assets/2473/1/TelecommunicationsspenddemandreportJune2010.pdf

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