Retail partners looking to connect customers to the satellite-based service element of Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN) could face an AUD15 (USD12) reconnection fee inside its satellite footprint, with a higher charge being mooted for customers outside of mainland Australia and Tasmania. According to ZDNet Australia, the proposed charges were mentioned by nbn (previously known as NBN Co) – the company overseeing the infrastructure rollout project – as part of a discussion with industry players in its product development forum.
As per the proposed fees, all subscribers residing outside of the NBN’s fixed-wireless, fibre-to-the-node/building (FTTN/FTTB) and hybrid fibre-coaxial (HFC) footprints would face the AUD15 connection fee if disconnecting their service to move house, for example, or when reactivating a previously suspended connection. Consideration for the fee is reportedly being given with to promoting ‘cost recovery on the long-term satellite’. Meanwhile, other proposals are said to include an AUD150-AUD225 fine for late cancellations or missed appointments from 4 November 2015, depending on their location. Further, nbn also revealed that it is mulling the introduction of ‘incidental charges’ for ‘Limited Access Region’ customers, described as those outside of mainland Australia and Tasmania that cannot be reached by road. It is understood that the proposed charges for such customers would be AUD1.40 per kilometre travelled, AUD98 per hour per installer for travel time and AUD98 on-site charges, with other costs also incurred for car hire, travel, accommodation, and equipment rental.
Commenting on the raft of proposed fees, a spokesperson for nbn confirmed that the charges were being discussed, stressed that no final decision had been made, and was cited as saying: ‘We’re seeking feedback from the industry via our product development forum. We’ll take this into consideration before publishing the final product construct paper.’