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Australia's National Broadband Network Downgraded 122

Posted by Soulskill
from the can-you-use-it-to-buy-health-insurance dept.
RobHart writes "Following election promises to create a 'better, cheaper, sooner' National Broadband Network (NBN), the new Australian government has reneged, announcing instead the NBN will cost $12bn more and take four years longer. The critical change is that the new network is based on Telstra's aging and unreliable copper network rather than fiber to the home, as has already been delivered during the NBN roll out to date."
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Australia's National Broadband Network Downgraded

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  • by oztiks (921504) on Friday December 13, 2013 @11:47AM (#45680545)

    Speaking as an Aussie I dont really give a rats.

    Look at American politics as a crystal ball in this case. We're damned if we do we're damned if we don't. At the moment Australians' are far too busy suing each other because we boast these horrid levels of self entitlement. All the meanwhile strangle our abilities to produce anything tangible because of ridiculous over regulation (hence why were so busy suing eachother over ludicrous shit, a biproduct of over regulation)

    5 years from now we'll be feeling reallly sorry for ourselves because we let the Greens and Labor party put us in this mess and then we'll be selling our asses hoping the Libs and whatever other conservatives will help the people out. All the meantime they'll do exactly the opposite putting us in the same mess the Republicans and Democrats have done to the States.

  • by Aquitaine (102097) <`sam' `at' `iamsam.org'> on Friday December 13, 2013 @12:15PM (#45680819) Homepage

    While the parent here is certainly right about government projects, it's hard not to imagine that the Australian government didn't know this was coming from day one.

    Ten minutes' study of Australia's geography and population can tell you that this would have been one of the lowest bang-for-the-buck national projects imaginable. Australia is the opposite of South Korea in this respect - it's a massive place with low population density. If running fiber all over it were easy, it would've been done by now.

    It is telling that they didn't just say 'sorry, this will take a little longer' but rather 'this will take longer, cost more, and we're not even going to try to deliver what we promised.'

    I am a free-market guy in general, but this is really tough. The free market can only 'sort it out' if the cost/benefit works out. I don't think it's even close here. The free market solution for a problem like Australia's is not 'let a bunch of companies bid on a hugely expensive monopoly project' but reward them with an innovative solution - come up with something that doesn't require them to dig up a whole continent to plug in towns of 1,000 people.

  • Re:In between. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 13, 2013 @12:44PM (#45681161)

    I've seen better. A company put in a bid for some subcontracting work, only to realise it was a job that they already subcontracted out to a subcontractor. Australian Government purchasing is so inefficient, subcontracting loops can even form.

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