As you’re probably aware; ADSL2+ broadband technology today is the most common while also being outdated only to be revived by the NBN in some form being: Fiber to the Node. Though not wholly copper, the node has fibre technology, but the basic speed is that of ADSL then there’s NBN that’s been being pushed through by internet providers in Australia. Others don’t feel the need to apply for NBN because the FTTN connection is underwhelming, or just fine having ADSL speeds so long as there’s a connection, So what do we really look for in an internet connection?
ADSL2+ depends on the distance from the exchange and copper wires can degrade so it really affects speed. You’ll feel that during inclement weather, trust me.
If you must know more about NBN, it’s also wired. But not just any wired connection. It is fiber optic meaning it uses light to transmit data signals and we all know that light is faster and it wouldn’t be degrading so long as the glass inside the fiber cable snaps.
That’s FTTP though, but FTTN is made of copper, er well. Copper to the home that is.
But that alone wouldn’t probably convince anyone into applying for NBN since reliability is just one of the many criteria that we look at when applying for unlimited internet plans.
This is the main selling point for me so long as the service is available.
As I’ve said, ADSL2+ speeds depend on the distance from the home to the exchange. And at average; ADSL has only a maximum of 24 MB/sec in download speed, that’s all theoretical and by now, as an ADSL subscriber; You can’t even get past 10 Mbps. If you ask me, that’s pretty suitable for day to day tasks only if you’re using apps or services that aren’t exactly data intensive. Though the real problem is, the reliability since ADSL2+ connection uses copper wires as its medium of transmission. Like I said, get bad weather and your internet speed goes kaput, be far from the exchange and your internet goes sloooooow.
While in NBN, an FTTN (Fiber to the Node) network would provide download speeds of over 50 Mb/sec to 100 Mb/sec. Problem with FTTN though is you can’t upgrade it to higher speeds and also runs on copper to the node that has fiber optic, and unlike FTTP (Fiber to the Premises) which is upgradable from 100 Mb/s to gigabit internet which is at 1,000 Mb/sec and even up to 10,000 Mb/s (10 GB/s). Yes it has that potential. And hey that’s all on fiber optic straight to your home. But let’s face reality, most of us are stuck with FTTN if you’re not aware. You can’t choose between them which sucks.
ADSL 2+ as of now is much more common than NBN’s FTTN since NBN is still working on rollouts and is expected to be completed by June 2021
The image above shows you all the available NBN services in all of Australia (A) and also the places on which a connection is being built (B)
Sure it looks dense but that’s because I just made it clearer, but let me show it to you without the enlarged markers:
Doesn’t look dense now does it. NBN might be dense around NSW area but it’s pretty sparse in Western Australia. So if I were you I’d stick with ADSL2+ for now but try to get an NBN connection as soon as possible. See those dense areas? If those areas are declared ready for service, you can kiss your ADSL connection goodbye… After 18 months of course, they’ll tell you when.
Which provider should you sign up for?
Lots are most probably signing up for iiNet, TPG, Optus, Telstra or even My Republic. These are fierce competitions so it’s a matter of finding the right one if you want a quick application. Finding the right one means looking at the prices. Don’t just get the cheapest ones as they might not have enough bandwidth. The rule here is you get what you pay for. Moreover if you’re new to NBN, get NBN25 if it’s offered. The basic option which is NBN12 is utter crap and it’s no less different from your current ADSL connection
Sadly though, not everyone would be having an FTTN connection in densely populated areas and there also wouldn’t be a connection in some rural or remote areas as they might be deemed as unserviceable and you might have a hard time getting an installation from companies that are well known, so if I were you, I’d give the new and lesser known ISPs a shot.
Why is that? That means fewer customers to deal with on their end and that means they’ll be able to cater to you and respond on a much shorter time. If they got good customer service that is. And who knows? Newer ones might be studying their competition and might give you a good run for your money by allocating more capacity.
Still, it depends on your ISP preference, maybe you trust one over the other, curious about new ones. It’s all up to you. But please do opt for a month to month connection to avoid headaches.
ADSL is still here, readily available but it would be phased out soon enough, it’s only good to get it for short term. There are 3 year contracts and some providers might migrate your ADSL connection to NBN. Take note: SOME
But in the long run you’ll be better off having NBN despite the bad news that surrounds it. There’s no choice to make, you’ll have to get NBN or lose connection.
Winner by default: NBN FTTN
Depending on what’s available, the reasonable action here is apply for NBN when possible, and since FTTP is too good to pass up if it’s offered. And if not, sorry to say but you’re either stuck with ADSL or FTTN. FTTP is much more reliable and also upgradable. NBN might not be perfect as it is right now but I think it has potential if it gets an upgrade after the rollout.
And if shit hits the fan and you can’t get a connection? You just have to be patient and maybe try 4G wireless broadband. ISPs offer capped plans, you can get by so long as you manage your data consumption right.