NBN Co today released more detailed eligibility criteria for potential rural and remote users of its Interim Satellite Service, confirming that, where high demand exists, first priority will be given to those people who have no access to alternate broadband services, subject to a service qualification process.
This followed the announcement by NBN Co earlier this month that it plans to offer a wholesale Interim Satellite Service capable of peak download speeds up to 6Mbps*, to be available via participating retail service providers, following the signing of contracts with Optus and IPStar.
To manage demand levels and ensure continuity between the outgoing Australian Broadband Guarantee program and the Interim Satellite Service, the end-user customer service qualification process will be conducted under similar processes as applied to the ABG. For example, rural, regional and remote customers will not be eligible for an Interim Satellite Service if they can access a "metro comparable" commercial service - with minimum data speeds of at least 512/128 kbps, a 3GB per month data allowance, and a total price to the end customer of no more than $2500 over three years.
The full eligibility criteria are available from the NBN Co website or by calling 1800 881816.
Under the Interim Satellite Service, the satellite equipment and installation will be provided by NBN Co, at no cost to the end-user customer for a standard installation.
NBN Co has also today called for expressions of interest from retail service providers who would like to purchase wholesale satellite services to resell to eligible rural and remote customers.
From the scheduled commencement of the service in July until October, NBN Co is planning capacity to appoint up to seven RSPs, providing in total up to 300 services a month on a managed end-to-end service basis. From November NBN Co can appoint up to 20 RSPs, providing in total up to 1000 services a month, who will need to support traffic from a point of interconnect. Interested RSPs should contact their NBN Co account manager.
NBN Co has already signed two RSPs to participate in a trial phase from now until July 2011 - Harbour IT and Skymesh. They plan to test the service with up to 200 rural and remote customers, primarily existing ABG service users.
Further information about NBN Co, its objectives and recent announcement is at www.nbnco.com.au