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NBN Co lobbying to let customers know max speeds before they sign up

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Despite all the drama surrounding the NBN, attempts are being made to improve customer satisfaction.

NBN Co boss Bill Morrow has revealed that the company behind the rollout of the National Broadband Network is “considering” revealing to the public the maximum download speeds that homes and offices are realistically capable of expecting.

This information – available to telcos and determined when a property is being hooked up to the NBN – has traditionally been withheld from the public, giving retailers room to make false promises and, in turn, increasing customer frustration and complaints. 

Last week Telstra announced it would compensate customers for breaking NBN speed promises. If this plan gets implemented, it could stop ISPs from making promises they can’t keep and help Australians make informed decisions when it comes to choosing an NBN broadband plan.

Mr Morrow said that revealing maximum internet speeds at premises is “something we have been considering discussing with the government” if the “service providers don’t volunteer to do this.”

Knock, knock. Anyone home?

Until now, customers were only able to reach out to the ISPs during an NBN installation, creating communication bottlenecks and increasing the number of “missed appointments”.

To alleviate that, Bill Morrow also revealed that NBN Co would allow customers to directly contact NBN contractors to make appointments and get information on realistic timelines regarding their NBN installation.

“There’s too many people involved and too many systems involved. So we’re completely revamping that to where we want the technician in the field, the third party contractor, to have direct contact with that end user,” Mr Morrow said.

“We’re also making sure we have more availability, better training in the field, and we’re able to predict more about the actual length of the job may take so we can do our workforce management better.”

With over 6 million premises “ready to connect” to the NBN as of the end of September, and the number growing each week, it does look like NBN Co is making an effort to do right by the end user.

Sharmishta Sarkar
Sharmishta Sarkar

Sharmishta is TechRadar's APAC Managing Editor and loves all things photography, something she discovered while chasing monkeys in the wilds of India (yes, she studied to be a primatologist but has since left monkey business behind). While she's happiest with a camera in her hand, she's also an avid reader and has become a passionate proponent of ereaders, having appeared on Singaporean radio to talk about the convenience of these underrated devices. When she's not testing cameras and lenses, she's discovering the joys and foibles of smart home gizmos. She also contributes to Digital Camera World and T3, and helps produce two of Future's photography print magazines in Australia.