At nbn, our goal is simple: deliver Australia's first national wholesale-only, open access broadband network to all Australians, no matter where they live. The nbn™ network is a modern, high performing network designed to enable the broadband services that homes and businesses now consider as essential, just like water or electricity.
The existing telecommunications network is not universally fit for this purpose, as it was largely built at a time before our lifestyles were heavily reliant on the internet. With this comes a change to the way telecommunications have operated in the past in Australia, moving from a copper backbone network to a predominantly fibre network for 93% of Australian premises.
This change is essential for Australia to be competitive globally. We’ll see how much can be achieved when all Australians have access to fast and reliable broadband. It will also greatly benefit the economy, health and government services and businesses nationwide.
Some safety-critical devices like medical alarms, fire alarms and lift emergency phones may not be compatible with the nbn™ network at all times, including during a power blackout.
In addition, all types of landline phones (cordless phones, as well as older style un-powered corded phones) will not work in a power outage. This is because the nbn™ network requires power at both the exchange and within the home or business to operate. This is a key difference to the existing copper network which only requires power at one end (within the exchange) to enable the charge required for a landline phone to function.
While the nbn™ network has in-built power resiliency in parts, it’s not within nbn’s control to guarantee power at both ends of the network at all times – including within the millions of homes and businesses across Australia. A key consideration is that your electronic equipment (such as modems, cordless phones, TVs and Wi-Fi routers) connected over the nbn™ network will also need separate battery backup to work in a power outage.
A number of factors influence the resiliency of the nbn™ network to provide uninterrupted services during a power outage. Even with network power resiliency and in-premises battery back-up, power outages may last longer than the battery life.
If you use any of the following equipment, you should talk to your equipment provider about whether your device will work when connected to the nbn™ network and what alternative solutions are available if it doesn't.
Yes, this is the case for the 93% of Australian premises connected to the nbn™ network via a fixed line technology. You can see where fixed line technologies have been installed in the nbn™ rollout map. We recommend you migrate your services over to the nbn™ network well before they are switched off, which occurs 18 months after the nbn™ network is switched on in your area.