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Australia - Fixed Broadband Market - Statistics and Analyses

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Last updated: 28 Apr 2020 Update History

Report Pages: 116

Analyst: Phil Harpur

Synopsis

Within the Australian fixed broadband market, there is a dynamic shift among customers to fibre networks, as this infrastructure is being built out by nbn (NBN Co), the company responsible for the national broadband deployment. Australia’s broadband sector is making improved progress in its migration to a multi-technology NBN.

Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN) is delivered via a multi-technology mix (MTM) to homes and businesses including: fibre to the premises (FTTP), fibre to the building (FTTB), fibre to the node (FTTN), Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC), fixed wireless and satellite.

The annual growth rate in the overall number of broadband subscribers is expected to continue to slow into 2020, with most growth coming from the mobile wireless and fibre broadband markets, due to increased uptake by the nbn is these two segments.

The DSL sector is expected to shrink as customers are migrated to the NBN in areas where services become available, while subscribers on HFC infrastructure will continue to be provided by existing cable within the NBN’s multi-technology mix. Commercial cable services based on the DOCSIS3.1 standard is anticipated by 2020.

The fixed-line broadband market continues to grow steadily as the nbn rollout gains momentum, although overall penetration is predicted to grow slowly over the next five years to 2024.

Internationally, the adoption of broadband ranks Australia below many other developed countries, however the Australian market has seen a moderate increase over the past few years due to the continued rollout of the nbn.

Consolidation within the broadband market, with some key acquisitions having taken place among fixed broadband service providers, will provide greater reach and scale for operators in coming years.

The industry has started to seriously question the regulatory environment around the NBN. The smaller players believe they are in danger of being squeezed out of the market through complex and expensive NBN wholesale offerings. These same arrangements also mean that the end-users are not receiving the benefits of high-speed broadband in an affordable form.

BuddeComm notes that the outbreak of the Coronavirus in 2020 is having a significant impact on production and supply chains globally. During the coming year the telecoms sector to various degrees is likely to experience a downturn in mobile device production, while it may also be difficult for network operators to manage workflows when maintaining and upgrading existing infrastructure. Overall progress towards 5G may be postponed or slowed down in some countries.

On the consumer side, spending on telecoms services and devices is under pressure from the financial effect of large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes. However, the crucial nature of telecom services, both for general communication as well as a tool for home-working, will offset such pressures. In many markets the net effect should be a steady though reduced increased in subscriber growth.

Although it is challenging to predict and interpret the long-term impacts of the crisis as it develops, these have been acknowledged in the industry forecasts contained in this report.

The report also covers the responses of the telecom operators as well as government agencies and regulators as they react to the crisis to ensure that citizens can continue to make optimum use of telecom services. This can be reflected in subsidy schemes and the promotion of tele-health and tele-education, among other solutions.

Key developments:

  • The DSL sector is expected to shrink as customers are migrated to the NBN.
  • Consolidation within the fixed broadband market has occurred over the past few years.
  • The annual growth rate in the fixed broadband market is expected to continue to slow over the next five years to 2024.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Optus, Telstra, nbn (NBN Co), iiNet, TPG, TransACT, M2, iiNet, Optus, Primus, Austar; Ericsson; Visionstream; Optus, iiNet, AUSTAR, Foxtel, Neighbourhood Cable, nbn (NBN Co), LBNCo, OPENetworks, OptiComm, RedTrain, Pivit, Fibercorp.

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