2000 businesses able to get faster, cheaper NBN internet
AROUND 2000 businesses in the Lismore and Ballina areas will have access to a new faster and cheaper internet service via fibre.
NBN Co has earmarked more than $2 billion to network investments over the next three years to benefit residential and business customers.
The new service is now available to take up, according to Gavin Williams, Chief Development Officer for Regional and Remote at NBN Co.
"There is a large footprint around Lismore and Ballina that would cover roughly 2000 businesses in both towns," he said.
"In Lismore, the business fibre zone extends from South Lismore in the west over and beyond Goonellabah, Howards Grass in the East and North Lismore.
"In Ballina, we have coverage around Lennox Head, East Ballina, West Ballina and Cumbalum."
The executive said the new product the company offerered through business fibre zones was called Enterprise Ethernet.
"It's a business-grade service, so regional businesses can really participate in the global digital economy."
Now that the basic network has been laid out, now it's up to businesses to contact their internet providers and ask for the new product and they will get it from NBN Co.
"The service offer is symmetrical speeds, that means, the same speed from the business into the cloud and down from the cloud. Those speeds can be anything from 10 megabit per second to almost one gigabit per second," Mr Williams said.
In the past, businesses in regional Australia paid more for their services than their counterparts in metro areas, but now the wholesale price NBN Co offers is the same everywhere.
"A business in Lismore or Ballina will have access to wholesale prices that are the same in the CBD in Sydney," Mr Williams said.
"There is about 25 internet providers that offer the new product.
"You can contact your provider or you can look up on the NBN website if your business in Lismore or Ballina is able to access it."
The NBN executive said that once the order was placed, completion of the connection may take up to two months.
In regards to pricing, Mr Williams said the wholesale price, on average, can reduce on average from five to 67 per cent.
"This kind of product can really support the regionalisation of the workforce. I get plenty of feedback from people looking to move to the north coast because suddenly it's possible," he said.
"In the past, business would have had to pay thousands for NBN to build the fibre connection from the network to their business, and with this we will provide that connection with no charge to the business."
NBN Co has allocated an additional $50 million co-investment fund over the next three years to work with local councils and state and territory governments to identify opportunities to extend business-grade services outside of designated NBN business fibre zones.