[AusNOG] NBN: "i want a pony! but can I afford it"
david at codify.com
Sat Aug 14 10:37:42 EST 2010
On 13 August 2010 16:23, Matthew Moyle-Croft <mmc at internode.com.au> wrote:
> Come on John, I've been in or around this industry for the best part of two
> decades. I spend my time dealing with Telstra and getting DSLAMs
> installed, so I'm intimately familiar with the industry, regulation, it's
> successes and failures.
> At the moment, I'm so deeply disappointed that, on this list, no one can
> articulate a way forward other than "NBN is bad for me and so I don't want
> it", so let's not change the familiar status quo.
> Even Mark resorted to "well, let's just wait and see, because we've been
> waiting and seeing for 2 decades".
Or to accentuate the positive - these dates are off the top of my head but:
1. In around 2000 when we moved into our previous offices we paid, IIRC,
something like $700 a month for 2 x ISDN b-channels to get *128 kbps
symmetrical* from TID. Excess data was 19c/meg + GST (yes, $190/GB on a
cents-per-meg basis). The other alternatives were multi-link PPP via 56K
modems, DDS Fastway for $30K/year (that was just the link with no IP
transit) for 2/2 meg serial, or BigPond cable - but Telstra refused to
connect that to business premises. I think that was about the time they
slapped 3GB flat quotas on cable anyway.
2. RequestDSL started offering some of the first DSL services around
shortly after that. We switched and paid, about the same $ for the same data
but with *2 meg symmetrical*. I can't recall the exact time but maybe
that was 2001/2002?
3. After that, we switched providers a few times and ended up going with
iPrimus who were one of the first to allow ADSL1 without the 256/512/1.5
Telstra nonsense, I think getting *6 or 7 meg down and maybe 600-700kbps
up* (artificial limits still I think - but whatever) That would have been
about 2004/2005 - we were paying something like $200 a month IIRC.
4. According to my inbox we ordered Business Extreme from Internode at
our old office in March 2006, at which point we got pretty close to 24 down
in Albert St Brisbane. I can't recall if Annex M was live then but if it
wasn't it was shortly after.
5. Since 2008 we have all our stuff in a data centre and use a DSL
service to access it. 20 meg down and 2.5 up for $69.
So in less than a decade we've gone from:
1. *128kbps / 128kbps @ $700 per month* @ 19c/meg <-- 2000
2. *22 000 kbps / 2 500 ish kbps @ $69 per month* with 60 GB included
then shaped down to 128 kbps / 2500kbps ish <-- 2010
Now there are ISPs like T offering 200GB for similar prices, or TPG offering
allegedly unlimited downloads.
So while everyone is quick to say how broken everything is structurally and
how evil T is and what not (and I don't dispute any of the gripes posted on
ausnog over the years) the fact remains that there have been quite amazing
improvements in spite of this.
Some other ways to think about it:
- In 2000 I'd pay $700 for a link slower than most people's shaping. Now
I p1ss more than that up against the wall on Internet radio - so much so I
don't care if I go out and leave a 256kbps stream playing all day while I'm
not at my PC.
- In 2000 you did not watch video. MAYBE someone e-mailed you a 10 second
MPEG and clogged your link for 5 minutes in the process, now you don't even
notice 480p videos and the biggest problem with 1080p is that Flash can't
render it properly unless you have a super computer.
- And at the risk of having all of the NBN folk currently having a
nerdgasm throw daggers at me, there was no wireless broadband in 2000. We
did some GPRS projects when T first made it reasonably available and I think
the cost of data at the time was 2.2c/kilobyte (I recall arguing with my T
rep at the time that it cost something like $20 to download the
telstra.com home page and associated images). Looking back over my
mailbox, I worked out that syncing my mail in 2004 cost $1.50 each time I
pressed Send/Receive on my iPaq PDA using IRDA to my phone over GPRS. Now
you get 3GB on no contract from Telstra for $29 a month for HSUPA speeds.
I know that not everyone enjoys the benefits of having access to an Agile
DSLAM (and being close) and as I have said elsewhere, something definitely
needs to be done about RIM/pair gain/regional scenarios. Putting that to one
side, for a lot of the population, things have improved substantially even
though the regulatory environment is stuffed and T is screwing the little
If _we_ the industry can't articulate what the future looks like,
If I had gone back to you in 2000 and said "I can buy unlimited downloads
for 70 bucks in <10 years over an existing single copper pair at speeds
approaching 20 meg down and 1 meg up" you would have told me I have rocks in
then we'll end up with it being decided for us or having nothing change
> (because we can't explain why or what) and so we end up grumbling for
> another few decades and be no better off.
That depends on whether you're a fundamentally glass-half-full or
glass-half-empty kind of person. I think on the whole, the improvements in
Internet access over the last 8-10 years or so have been quite remarkable.
Sure, things could be faster if someone else paid for the implementation of
fibre across the country - and I'd probably agree for the need to spend
$43bln if I looked back 8-10 years and saw that Internet access in Australia
had been stagnant or stuffed. It hasn't. In my view it has been quite
dynamic and improved quite markedly. For some people it has not and that is
a cause for concern and I'm not sure anyone on this thread would dispute the
need for a fix for those guys.
> Come on. What does the future look like?
Who the hell knows? No one would have predicted what Internode were capable
of delivering in 2006/2007 back in 2000.
The future is extremely difficult to anticipate. It is a LOT of coin IF it
happens on time and budget; and based on past experience with the current
government, I think either being the case is highly unlikely.
[ ... ]
*David Connors* | david at codify.com | www.codify.com
Codify Pty Ltd
Phone: +61 (7) 3210 6268 | Facsimile: +61 (7) 3210 6269 | Mobile: +61 417
Address Info: https://www.codify.com/contact
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