NBN makes money and upgrades fibre, Telstra scraps postpaid plan billing, Starlink touches down in Australia: Vertical Hold Ep 315

NBN co announces new FTTP upgrade suburbs, Telstra ditches everything but prepaid direct debits and Starlink brings competition to the satellite broadband space in Australia — at a cost.

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Our special guest this week is Jen Dudley-Nicholson from News Corp, talking in depth about NBN’s financial results, who the latest winners in the FTTN to FTTP upgrade lottery are, what’s happening with HFC speed upgrades and how NBN’s finally managed to turn a profit… sort of.

Speaking of profits, Telstra’s making plenty of those, but it’s also flipped its arrangement for postpaid plans, making them (effectively) prepaid via direct debit only. The benefits for Telstra are pretty obvious — but are there benefits for consumers as well?

It’s been a while since Elon Musk’s plans have featured on the show, but this week’s all about broadband — and Musk has plans there too for Australia, with pre-orders for SpaceX’s Starlink satellite broadband going on sale for the first time this week. Who’s going to bear the high install cost — and should NBN be worried about the implicit competition from a space-based broadband competitor?

(Also, if anyone at Tesla’s listening, Adam would really like a Cybertruck.)

If you’d like to know more about Starlink, Alex wrote up a simple guide to everything that you need to know about Musk’s low Earth orbit satellite system over at Finder.

As always, we’d love to hear from you about this week’s episode — you can leave us a comment below, or contact us via Twitter or Facebook.

Vertical Hold: Behind The Tech News – podcast hosts Adam Turner and Alex Kidman speak to Australia’s leading technology journalists every Friday to get the stories behind the tech news of the week.


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Australian technology news podcast Vertical Hold: Behind The Tech News dives into the big stories of the week. Joined by Australia’s leading tech journalists every Friday, co-hosts @adam_turner and @alexkidman channel-surf through the headlines in search of the big picture. About/Contact us

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