Telstra keen to ring in   the changes

ON LINE: Telstra state manager Mark Bolton, left, and media manager Chris Marks had their phones at the ready when they visited Port Pirie.Telstra and other telecommunicationscompanies will promote services linked to the new National Broadband Network in Port Pirie.

In less than a month, 2100 households in Port Pirie South and Solomontown will be eligible for the NBN’s fast-data services for the first time.

The NBN will remain as a wholesaler of the services with the retail operations being left to Telstra, Optus and other companies.

Telstra state manager Mark Bolton, who visited Port Pirie, saidhis company’s copper-wire connections would become redundant under the changes.

“We have no plans to rip out the copper –those lines will just be sitting idle,” he said.

He said under the copper-to-the-node system of the NBN, a short wire would run from green cabinetson ourfootpaths to houses.

He likened it to an “extension cord” from the boxes to households.

“In a place like Port Pirie where fibre-to-the-node is coming to the town, there will be a migration from our network to the NBN,” he said.

He said the migration from the first eligible customers would take up to 18 months.

He expected the retail operations to be “business as usual”, but based on a “different model”.

“We are really embracing the change to NBN. It will provide high-speed service and better coverage,” he said.

About300 otherproperties in and around Port Germein can now also switch onwith the site going live recently at the end of last month.

The NBN arrived in the Port Pirie region in May, 2015, and up to now almost 5200 locals are eligible to connect inCrystal Brook, Port Broughton, Fisherman Bay, Jamestown, Redhill, Blyth, Brinkworth, Bungama, Napperby, Gladstone Town, Laura, Melrose, Booleroo and Wirrabara.

Mr Bolton said the extension of Telstra services on the NBN network around Port Pirie wouldgive locals access to faster broadband that will help them better source information, materials and supplies for their growing businesses.

It also allows them the opportunity to video chat and adds another dimension to their potential interactions with customers or suppliers.

“The speed and reliability of the NBN forbusiness owners opens new ways in which they can interact with their customers,” he said.

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