Federal Member for Grey Rowan Ramsey said he is very pleased with the announcement that Sky Muster satellite users are to receive around 50 per cent more peak data and twice as much off-peak data from October.
Mr Ramsey said NBN Co has announced it will provide the extra data at no extra cost to retailers.
“While there were a few early issues with satellite perfomance it seems now customers are pretty happy with both the reliability and speed of the service,” Mr Ramsey said. “However I have been receiving consistent complaints about total data capacity and the limited size of the package available during peak periods. Peak periods by nature are exactly when businesses want to do business.”
Mr Ramsey said he has raised these issues on a number of occasions with NBN Co and Communications Minister Mitch Fifield and they had led him to be hopeful that when the extent of the demand on the satellites was better identified that package sizes may be increased.
“That is exactly what has now happened and I am delighted Sky Muster users will now be able to have more data, particularly during the peak periods,” he said.
“For the first time, we expect customers to be able to purchase plans of more than 100 gigabytes a month of peak data. “This is great news for our rural communities and Sky Muster consumers all over Australia.”
Mr Ramsey said for example an extra 35 gigabytes of peak data would allow a business to do 50 more hours of high definition videoconferencing with colleagues and clients, or a student to do 25 more hours of watching university lectures each month, or a photographer to send an extra 3500 pictures a month.
The Government’s announcement follows the huge improvement in Sky Muster stability, with outages down 90 per cent in April on what they were in September 2016.
“On coming to Government we found Labor’s NBN was in tatters. Way over budget, way behind schedule, totally unsubstatiated claims about the number of premises passed and the collapse of the lead contractors in SA and WA. We have had to start almost from scratch, but now we are exceeding targets, the technology is working and we are keeping to budget.”
Sky Muster and Sky Muster 2 provide broadband services to the 3 per cent of Australians, generally in rural and remote areas, who would never get broadband any other way – including those in mountains, hills, small towns, in deserts and on islands.
Sky Muster delivers speeds of up to 25 megabits a second – fast enough to run multiple high definition connections. Retailers may however sell plans, which deliver either up to 12 megabits/second or up to 25 megabits/second.
The satellites shoot 101 beams down from 36 kilometres above the Earth to cover every inch of Australia’s 8 million square kilometres of land mass, and external territories. Each beam has predetermined data capacity, based on design work done by NBN Co under the former Government.
Now that the satellites have been active for a year, NBN Co technicians have tested these assumptions projected before Sky Muster was active and release more data. Technicians also managed to increase the speed at which data travels through the NBN “pipe” from 135 gigabytes a second to 180, which allows more data through to more users.
There are a range of online calculators which end users can use to estimate their usage:
Media Contact; Leonie Lloyd-Smith 08 8633 1744 Port Pirie Office.
June 26, 2017