NBN Co is planning a massive cull of premises that are currently listed as unable to carry retail services between now and June, equivalent to almost one million homes and businesses.
If achieved, it would mean over 70 percent of the premises that are sometimes known as “service class zero or equivalent” will be made serviceable in just the next four months.
The number came to light after an apparent error in a status update on how NBN Co was tracking against its ready to connect target in the corporate plan of 9.7 million premises.
In a media statement issued Monday, NBN Co said that “more than 8.1 million homes and businesses are now able to order a service from their preferred retailer. By the end of June, an additional 628,000 homes and businesses are expected to be able to connect to the network.”
That appeared to suggest that the company would have 8.7 million premises - rather than 9.7 million premises - ready to connect by financial year-end, a shortfall of 972,000 premises.
But an NBN Co spokesperson told iTnews that, somewhat confusingly, the update excluded premises that will shift their status from "not yet ready to connect" to "ready to connect".
iTnews understands the 9.7 million ready to connect target breaks down as follows:
- 8.1 million premises already ready to connect
- 628,000 new premises across various access technologies
- 800,000 HFC premises that are meant to shift from not yet ready to connect to ready to connect.
- 172,000 other premises that will also shift from not yet ready to connect to ready to connect. This may be fibre-to-the-curb, where numbers have recently stacked up.
“NBN Co remains on track to reach the 9.7m FY19 ready to connect figure stated in the latest corporate plan,” the NBN Co spokesperson said.
“As flagged previously, there will be some movement of premises from not yet ready to connect into ready to connect whilst continuing to add footprint from the current build.”
Even if it does not point to an impending massive shortfall against the ready to connect targets, the breakdown of the topline number is useful in keeping track of how NBN Co performs in getting the number of unserviceable premises down.
Thus, if NBN Co is to meet its ready to connect number this year, it will signify massive purge of this unserviceable premises number, equivalent to one million premises between now and June.
If that occurs, there will be just 381,000 unserviceable premises left in the rollout.
The number of unserviceable premises peaked at 1,478,551 in early January this year, but has since fallen by about 110,000 premises.