Ian Birks, chief of the AIIA (Australian Information Industry Association) said the NBN was "brave and visionary" but not without its challenges.
"I'm most excited about the digital economy applications that will flow. Conroy is to be applauded for having the vision to drive this issue through at this level," he said.
John Linton, CEO of Exetel did not hold back when expressing his distaste for the project.
"Anyone that knows me knows that i think [the NBN] is a load of crap. It came as a surprise - but does anyone want a $43bn surprise? So why did it come as a surprise - because it had absolutely no thought behind it whatsoever. It doesn't matter how stupid you are, you cannot go and promise to do something that is economically impossible."
David Foreman of the Competitive Carriers Coalition said he was in favour of the NBN project but only if it was managed correctly.
"The important issue for us is that the structure of the new investment is going to be and remain wholesale-only. That means it creates an opportunity for the first time ever in this country a generally level competitive playing field once the NBN is built - that is the primary reason why we applauded and support the NBN initiative because it is not just the technology but the structure of the industry," he told the audience.
Greens Senator Scott Ludlam, who admitted he was not an expert in the subject, said he was excited about the as yet unknown applications the NBN will be used for.
He also described the Senate as "constipated".
"The Senate at the moment could be politely described as constipated. It is very difficult to pass anything through there at the moment - partly because there is a huge mass of complex legislation that is supposed to be going through. We will probably get the Telstra bill passed but i am going to predict right now that the net filter bill will not be on the table before the election and i think probably they are going to struggle to get the broadband legislation through."