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OZ gets first 'Gigabit city' with net speeds 100x faster than national average

By Ashton Young, Wed 31 May 2017
FYI, this story is more than a year old

It’s official: Launceston has become Australia’s first Gigabit city.

Launtel flipped the switch at 11am on Tuesday, which means the Tasmanian-owned telco is now offering the local business community 100 percent nbn fibre-to-the-premise (FttP) connectivity that will enable Gigabit speeds at commercially viable rates.

Launtel director, Damian Ivereigh says the speeds match the world’s fastest countries such as Singapore, Hong Kong and Japan, enabling Launceston businesses to expand by trading with the world.

“Fast communications will facilitate business with any of the developed countries, without having to leave home. For instance, Gigabit speeds will allow a local business to control robots overseas through virtual reality,” says Ivereigh.

“Australian business has been held back by internet speeds that are still playing catch-up. The Akamai State of the Internet report ranks Australia 67th for fixed line internet speeds, behind countries such as Kenya and Latvia. Only 76 percent of Australians have speeds above 4mb/s - we’ll be delivering 1,000mb/s.”

Ivereigh is confident that the significantly faster speeds available in Launceston will attract more companies and employment to Tasmania, citing US city Chattanooga where a gigabit economy has led to wage growth in line with capital city levels and young people returning to the city as more companies roll into town.

Launtel will provide its Blue Ocean Gigabit connections to any business with a pure fibre nbn connection, which is 10x faster than the former maximum and 100x faster than the national average. Launtel’s low contention ratios enable a file to be downloaded faster from the cloud than from a USB stick.

“We are providing a service that is so fast that internet speed is no longer a limiting factor in business productivity,” says Ivereigh.

“It removes the disadvantages of distance for Tasmania and puts us in the box seat to grab all opportunities.” 

In terms of Gigabit origins in Australia, Launceston and Hobart were Australia’s first cities in Australia to be ‘turned on’ to the original nbn ‘pure fibre’ network of fibre-to-the-premises (FttP).

Political decisions saw the rollout change for parts of Tasmania and almost all the Australian mainland to be fibre-to-the-node (FttN), which connects to a node in a local neighbourhood then uses copper lines to take data into the premises, which compromises network speed, capability and reliability.

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