[clug] broadband ISPs in Canberra

Kim Holburn kim.holburn at anu.edu.au
Sat Sep 25 04:24:50 GMT 2004

On 2004 Sep 25, , at 10:06 AM, Martin Pool wrote:
> On 25/09/2004, at 9:51 AM, Simon Haddon wrote:
>>> On Fri, 24 Sep 2004 11:52:02 +1000 Martin Pool <mbp at sourcefrog.net> 
>>> wrote:
>>>> (For example: why don't Transact use VoIP to do free national and
>>>> cheap international calls?  I would have thought it'd be technically
>>>> feasible, and it would be at least a small differentiator from 
>>>> regular
>>>> telcos. But no.)
>>> Because their telephony wants to be *much* more reliable than the 
>>> other
>>> bits of their network ...
> OK, so it's too hard.
> But the net result is that they have a service which is more complex 
> and expensive than ADSL, while offering few useful added features...  
> It's not for me to solve it; I'm just disappointed that they seem to 
> have squandered their opportunity (and I'm still paying for it.)

TransACT could have offered just internet and TV.   Then they wouldn't 
have had the legal issues.  They didn't because telephony is the cash 
cow that drives all of what they're doing.  It's why Telstra is 
dragging it's feet so on broadband.   Telephony has miniscule data 
rates and enormous and complex bills.  Unfortunately this is being 
driven by the telcos who really don't want to give up their hold on 
your money for their very little service (in internet terms a phone 
call is a 2Kb connection).

TransACT with their VDSL is trying to compete against ADSL which is a 
much cheaper technology when they could offer 55Mb to the home.

>> 3.  Pure telephony line is more reliable and there are large legal 
>> issues
>>     at stake.  ie:  I know if an ISP that can offer VoIP but only as
>>     a second phone due to legal issues about being a home primary line
>>     and offering a reliable service.
> And yet I'm allowed to have only VoIP at home if I set it up myself.  
> (Or is that illegal, I wonder?)
> There are now VoIP handsets, so it's not only nerdy gannets who might 
> want to do it.  I'm also allowed to have a mobile, or no phone at all.


> I wonder how this will play out?  At the moment it looks like there 
> will be some regulated and highly-reliable traditional telcos, which 
> will increasingly be ignored by people using cheap but somewhat flaky 
> IP services.

The telcos will die out but painfully and protractedly.

Kim Holburn
IT Manager, Canberra Research Laboratory
National Information and Communication Technology Australia
Ph: +61 2 61258620 M: +61 417820641
Email: kim.holburn at anu.edu.au  - PGP Public Key on request
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