Why your NBN costs are way too high
Optus has announced that it will stop providing its 5G home internet service for customers in NSW by the end of 2019.
The decision comes as the NBN is facing criticism over the cost of the project and the NBN Co’s performance in the rollout.
Optus chief executive Bill Morrow said in a statement that the company had “determined that providing 5G services to all Australians is not feasible”.
“The cost of delivering 5G networks to the homes and businesses of Australia is significantly higher than the cost to operate the existing 5G network,” Mr Morrow said.
“Optus will stop delivering 5GP services to our customers in 2019, to make the best possible use of our limited resources.”
Optus said that the decision would not affect the current rollout and that it was committed to continuing to deliver 5G to the public.
However, Optus is now seeking advice from the Competition and Consumer Commission (CCCC) on whether it can continue to offer 5G service to its customers.
“The CCCC will need to conduct a thorough assessment of the competitive impact of 5G on our business,” Optus CEO Peter Morrow said on Wednesday.
“This review is critical to determining the appropriate course of action for Optus.”
In a statement on Wednesday, Optis said that it had “received a letter from the CCCC confirming that the CCAC would consider the impact of Optus’s proposed termination of 5GP service to our users in NSW”.
“Optis is committed to the delivery of 5 GP services to the market, and we continue to be committed to doing so,” Optis CEO Peter Hobbs said.
Opti says it has already delivered 5G through the NBN and will continue to do so.
“We are delivering the 5G signal to all of our customers and the 5GP signal is providing a significant boost to the network performance and network efficiency, which are both important to the health of the network,” Opti said.
It added that it is committed “to delivering 5 GP in the years ahead”.
The announcement comes as NBN Co chief executive Mike Quigley said that Australia’s overall network is on track for 5G and it has been in a “pretty good” state for the last three years.
Mr Quigleys statement comes after the government was forced to backtrack on its $3.5 billion broadband plan because of delays in the installation of 5GW of 5GHz technology in NSW.
The Government was forced into the “sledgehammer” of building a 5G rollout after a series of failures in the state and elsewhere.
Optus is the latest major telecommunications provider to back away from its 5GHz deployment.
Telstra, Optum, and Optus have all told their customers that they will be able to continue using the existing copper network as they did previously.
But Mr Morrow’s comments indicate that Optus may be looking at a “no-build” option in NSW, rather than the “build-to-order” option.
Optuses announcement comes days after Telstra said that its 5GW deployment would be completed before the end in 2019.
NBN Co said that if Optus decides to end its 5GP network service it will be forced to pay an additional $500 million for the remainder of the 5GW rollout.