nbn HFC trials


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Earlier in the year, we talked all about the great Cable technology (also known as HFC) which is being added to the nbn™ multi-technology mix (MTM) to bring faster, more reliable Internet to Australians faster.

If you missed it, HFC or Cable is a pre-existing technology that was owned by various telecommunications companies, but has since been bought by nbn™ to add to the mix of technology they are using to roll out nbn™. Their plan is to upgrade the infrastructure so that it can service more premises in the existing area. By adding Cable to the nbn™ rollout, more Retail Service Providers (RSPs) are now able to access the higher speed network, which was previously only available to select retailers.

Now iiNet is ready to try out nbn™ HFC for themselves, trialling the product for some select homes. Our aim is to test out the product and its performance and get a feel for the customer experience before bringing out our range of Cable products.

Where’s the trial?

The first area in iiNet’s HFC trial is Redcliffe in Queensland. We have the capacity to trial 8 Redcliffe homes with Cable that fall within the footprint of the former Optus Cable. The second area, where we aim to trial 12 homes, is Ocean Reef in Western Australia, using Cable previously owned by Telstra.

Our aim

By trialling Cable in these two different areas, one of our main goals is to test various forms of connection. Some of the trial homes will have Cable infrastructure already installed, and some won’t have any of the equipment. Not every home that will be receiving nbn™ Cable was previously eligible for Optus or Telstra Cable, despite falling within the footprint.

We want to make sure we have the best possible understanding and know-how to get these premises connected swiftly. We also want to test the compatibility of our products and hardware with the Cable service to ensure they are ready to handle the ultrafast connection speeds.

The speed itself with be another consideration. We want to ensure what we promise to our customers – we deliver. Anything we feel isn’t up to standard can then be modified or changed completely to make sure we’re delivering the top notch service we pride ourselves on. Through the trials, we really want to enhance the customer experience for those ordering cable plans when they become available and show we’re not only the nbn™ experts for fibre connections, but Cable too!

The benefits of Cable

We’re hoping to start offering commercial nbn™ Cable plans soon after the trials, because we will know everyone in a Cable footprint will want to connect. Cable can support NBN Co’s fastest wholesale speeds and for some premises, most of the equipment will already be installed. Best of all, rolling out Cable as part of the MTM means more premises connected sooner.

To see where your exact location stands in the nbn™ rollout process, check out the nbn™ Coverage Checker. This will let you pinpoint exactly where sites have been built or are in stages of preparation or construction. Make sure to register your interest on the nbn™ Wait List and check out iiNet’s nbn™ plans to be ready to roll when the nbn™ hits your neighbourhood.


  1. Gary Weybury says:

    A lot of stuff regarding nbn and various options and rollout times, blah, blah, blah.
    What I’d like to know is this:
    1) When will my house be connected ??
    2) What will be the connection type ??
    3) What will be available speeds ??

  2. Diane Hurd says:

    Rural Qld I have no expectation of ever having cable and satellite is not available with Iinet.
    So nbn will not be an option.
    No point in boasting to me!

  3. peter munn says:

    I can not get “naked adsl, so how long do I have to wait for this ,nbn HFC???

  4. Paul Crick-Lyon says:

    Don’t waste my time. Just give me a date for my NBN Connection. Sometime this century I hope.

  5. Dickson says:

    Still extremely pissed off that Elwood, in spite of being so close to the Melbourne CBD, isn’t even listed at all for installation dates. This is such a slow process that it’s laughable. By the time Elwood has a chance of giving NBN to customers it will be at least 2020, and 100/40 speeds are primitive compared to Wellington, NZ – which already offered 200/200 almost 2 years ago! I never expected Melbourne to be close to 10 years behind Wellington.

  6. Max Tischhauser says:

    just send me an e-mail two weeks before you can connect the new NBN to my house and then we will do a deal. In the meantime we will go ahead whit your at the moment catastrophic e-mal connection. Gone are the glorious days of iinet under the old owner. We think the China man, which is the new owner, is only after our money. And I now from what I speak,as an old member of the iinet family. Cheers, Max

  7. Barry Isaac says:

    Dear iinet
    When will NBN come to Turners Beach in Tasmania?



  8. samos says:

    Will iiNet be able to convince nbn to extend / in-fill parts of the cable network, eg in suburban metropolitan areas?

  9. John says:

    The issue is, that the NBN on HFC for many of us is so far down the track…

    My location is likely to be served by HFC. The first RFS is in first half of next year and last RFS in first half of 2018. Given the delays so far with HFC do we really expect something to happen this decade? I really don’t.

    A shame as the cable is already there and is already capable of delivering 100Mpbs down, just a crappy 2Mbps up, and its upstream that really makes NBN interesting.

  10. Tony Millward says:

    So, we are still not getting NBN in the foreseeable future….you do spout a lot of hot air iinet.

  11. Angry in regional WA says:

    Frankly, I couldn’t care less about any of this til you start pushing NBN to go to reigional areas FIRST! We need it a lot more than the major cities!

  12. Anonymous says:

    You are talking about ‘cable’. You should use the term ‘copper cable’ to make sure that people understand that you are pushing inferior solution to fibre optic.

  13. A mate of mine in the US had this technology when he moved into a new subdivision. He said it was awesome when it was him and 3 other families in the subdivision but when all of the 12 houses in the subdivision sold it became unusable in peak periods. Slower than dialup he said. If he wanted to use the Internet he had to wait til 1 in the morning. It appears nbn is just like the promised train line in Perth. Which is now down to two new bus routes. Every promised new service in Perth is down to little or no better technology by the time it’s actually installed. Sad really.

  14. Michael Obrandell says:

    I understand HFC will make services available quicker by using existing infrastructure, no doubt- and thanks for testing and being honest about it. What I really find interesting is that Australia has allowed the deployment of mixed technologies to deliver “fast” internet access, furthermore what isn’t widely available is a clear definition and benchmarking what “fast” really means. I feel this there is no different in meaning than saying “great” internet access, instead “fast” internet access. I agree we have improved from what we had, but for the investment made, politics between parties and the actual end result, the longer term cost for Internet users in australua will be greater. I’m sorry, but yes I’m as like many others disappointed with the “value” added by the MTM technology. What is next now? NBN to hire cheap labour from a third world country to transport packets on USB drives of “fast” internet to more areas by running back and forth to a fibre node, so it can say, “we have delivered NBN to 99.99999999% of the population.

    Technically there is no political argument that will change how physics and science works and the constraints of MTM, so I look forward to get my “faster” internet service.

    Maybe in the table of definitions we should add “bottle neck” too with pretty pictures so majority of people can understand that what we are getting is a political move and does not unlock the potential of NBN.

  15. John McSmith says:

    At times I have shocking download speeds and I am not sure if it’s the system or my computer which is an Apple laptop Pro about 2 years old. I could never attempt to try and download a movie as it would take a week.
    Thank you f or your information and news it is helpful and appreciated.
    Thank you, John

    • Reece Hatton says:

      Hi John,

      Our support team will certainly be able to check out the speeds here and determine whether there’s a problem with the connection or the device. Give them a call at 13 22 58 sometime and have an ethernet cable handy so they can start narrowing down the cause of any speed issues.

      – Reece

  16. Graeme says:

    Why did you not select Castle Hill Estate in Murrumba Downs 4503 instead of Redcliffe. A pocket of NBN denied homes surrounded by NBN just ridiculous planning by the powers that be.

  17. John Crouch says:

    I would be very happy to participatein HFC trails. I am in Redcliffe QLD anf cable connection is already connected to house but not used. We have. Had a very poor adsl connection which support don’t seem to be able to fix.

    • Brianna Burgess says:

      We don’t require any further participants in the trial at this stage, John. However we do appreciate the offer! We’ll be in contact when NBN HFC is available in your area.

      – Brianna

  18. Russell mcnee says:

    Hi there the coverage here in
    Tumbulgum is terrible to say the least drops out a lot and at times is very slow it is wireless nbn
    Cheers russell

  19. Ben says:

    This is really great news we have cable running past our front door in Eight Mile Plains 4113 and no sign or mention even of the arrival of NBN.

  20. Jo says:

    I am in Orbell Ct Leichhardt Ipswich 4305. Our Street received a letter last Aug 2015 from NBN Co stating our street was to be part of a HFC construction trial. In early December 2015 an NBN/Optus Box was attached to outside of the house and new HFC cable connected from house to the street. Its now nearly July 2016, and after calling NBN and IInet, No One at either seems to know anything about this trial, or the fact that we have all been connected for some 7 months. No One can tell me when these new connections may become an active trial.

  21. Mitch Blom says:

    When is East Perth going to get some?

    • Jade Smit says:

      Hey Mitch,

      Would be best to get in touch with our Sales team on 13 19 17 to check whats available at your location.
      Let us know how you go and if you require further assistance.

      – Jade

  22. Anonymous says:

    Sorry I think the NBN is a urban Legend , does not exsist . We pay good money for low speeds. Wont be getting the NBN unless its Fibre to the home and we know the LNP government will not be doing that anytime soon. Our area isn’t even on the plans yet just over the road( Warton rd) they are getting upgrades.

  23. Bernard Terry says:

    Would love to have “the green in Butler” trialed. Having access to a sole ISP means no competition.

  24. KEITH HAMMOND says:

    What a complex mess nbn has achieved! Do it once, Do it right! Do it with fibre!
    You say you want to deliver what you promise to customers. Well, I’ve been buying off you for a couple of years and over that period have been on the phone to your techos for a total of approx. 5 hours, and I still frequently have down times!

  25. Paul Davey says:

    Will the HFC NBN plans be any different to the current NBN plans?

  26. Anonymous says:

    We just Need faster internet in country Western Australia!!!

  27. Karen Adamson says:

    Fed up with my internet connection. Trying to watch catch up tvs or movies is a wate of time as the connection nearly always drops out completely or stop starts constantly. Feel like I am paying for a substandard service. Tried many different ways to resolve problem and have had excellent phone support from iinet staff with the admission that the speed is very slow and that it is probably because we are a bit far away from the transmitter.

  28. Peter Alexander says:

    I presently have cable supplied by Telstra. What i would like to know is when the NBN is up and running in my area will anything change for me or will my service still come via my existing connection.

  29. Laurence says:

    Sounds like LNP propaganda

  30. Tones says:

    NBN used to be just fibre with a plan and a timetable it has been totally stuffed up by Turnbull’s mismanagement.

  31. Johh Wilkinson says:

    That’s great for the “few” people that have cable but for the majority of Australian’s we will only get (if lucky)the downgraded MTM with no guarantee of performance speeds.

  32. Lazaros Kastanis says:

    As usual compromise methods. We continue to pay high prices for sub-standard speeds. We are in inner city Brisbane and still at least 12 to 18 months from even a look in. The NBN is rapidly becoming another government myth.

  33. Taj says:

    No adsl 2+, no naked adsl, only absurdly slow regional adsl or patchy NBN wireless. Very unimpressed.

    • Brianna Burgess says:

      Best to get in touch with our Support (13 22 58) team to raise any concerns surrounding connection performance, Taj. A Customer Service Representative will be able to run through a series of troubleshooting steps to ensure your connection is operating optimally.

      – Brianna

  34. Bill says:

    I have no expectation of living long enough to experience the benefits of a connection in Kalamunda WA. Seems they might start in about six years time! Hope my grandchildren will enjoy it.

  35. Darryl says:

    You boast “benefits of Cable” but provide none. There are no benefits. Cable sooner, sooner than what I ask. I was less than one kilometre from FTTP when the roll-out stopped nearly three tears ago, to now be “promised” HFC is a very disappointing. Good luck with you HFC at 100/40, have you seen the Telstra pit outside my place, full of water for half the year.

  36. RobK says:

    A couple of years ago, the system advised we would be getting HFC in the second half of 2016. Now it’s just “service not available” (I knew that). Looking forward to rubber cable in 2026.

  37. Kate says:

    The coverage map is all very well, but what would be or more interest is information as to when our area is likely to be connected to the nbn.

  38. Mick says:

    Well here in the 3rd world country we do now have NBN in Penrith, NSW. Only problem was they did the whole of Penrith except for a small top end section that runs from Regentville Exchange instead of Penrith. When will I get it – last time I checked it was around 2018-19 so instead of finishing , they now go all the way up the Blue mountains and will have to bring all those resources back here again to finish off – what a joke. Don’t bother keep sending me updates Iinet as its a load of crap currently and I’ll probably be dead before it arrives and why bother when the copper in my street is total crap and wet ( I know as I work on it !)

  39. Glen McBride says:

    NBN Means No Bloody Network.
    Regardless of who’s in Canberra.

  40. Colin Davies says:

    Still waiting for ADSL2 here so why would I get excited about NBN??

  41. Mark Mc Givern says:

    Hi I have been with iinet for nearly 17 years and I am registered with iinet NBN. I have the NBN 3 kilometres away but my Suburb is still late 2017 before it gets to my suburb them wait again for a connection. It would be nice for iinet to go in a bat for the work to be completed sooner so I can enjoy some sort of speed instead of watching my Fetch TV with messages saying internet speed is to slow to watch what I want to.

    • Jade Smit says:

      Hi Mark,

      Sorry to hear about the delays advised with reference to getting NBN at your location. Availability and a ETA for your location can be viewed here:
      Let us know if you have any further feedback or queries, happy to help where possible.

      – Jade

  42. Keith says:

    NBN FTTP arrived in MANDURAH WA in March/April, and I was connected by the NBN crew for iiNet.
    After a slow start (<10mbs) speed for the first couple of weeks, I'm now averaging 24.5mbs downloads and 4.7mbs uploads. It is fantastic! The Fibre phone works like a treat to! Well done NBN!

    • Brianna Burgess says:

      Great to hear you’re satisfied with the performance of your NBN (FTTP) and Fibre Phone service, Keith! Thanks for sharing your experience.

      – Brianna

  43. Royston Field says:

    Great getting my FTTP on Wednesday
    29-6-16 thank you so much iinet (i am with westnet your sister company)
    Love the service i have received from you for many many years & hopefully for years to come.

    • Brianna Burgess says:

      Appreciate the positive feedback, Royston. Let us know if you need a hand with setting up the new NBN connection!

      – Brianna

  44. OMG Lightning! says:

    I used to think cable was just slower, more expensive fibre… but then I saw the lightning and sparks coming out of it. Shut up and take my money!

  45. david king says:

    Customer concern
    People are quoting the benefits of the NBN with the higher speeds/ band width but the optic fibre presented at the moment is a collective system e.g. 1000 customers on the one line compared to adsl which is a parallel system e.g. one customer per line.
    So as a customer if I am paying for a 100/40Mbps connection. How does the customer know that all the equipment attached to the line that he is paying for is rated for that given connection speed.

    What quality systems at iinet will be in place to ensure customers are getting what they pay for. (e.g. Number of customers per optic line)

    Some Companies have already be fined by fair trading on this issue ( only having equipment rated at 2m at the exchange)

  46. Ken Galbraith says:

    The people who have made previous comments are either ignorant or ill-informed.
    1. iiNet is a retailer of the NBN hence has no control of dates or what MTM will be used in their street.
    2. Comparing NZ to Aus is chalk & cheese in regard to distances & population.
    3. The so-called “LNP propaganda” is far closer to reality than Labor’s ever was!

    I have moved a lot in the past 20 years (4 different states) & have had broadband services from TPG, iiNet and Telstra and TPG & iiNet have always provided a better service than Telstra even though in certain instances problems were caused by Telstra lines used by iiNet!

    Keep up the good work iiNet!

  47. RJCollum says:

    I`ve got Foxtel cable so after the trials, i can request iinet to service me with high speed cable internet? No hope of anything else as i`m stuck on plain ole` ADSL.

    • Jade Smit says:

      Hey there!

      Would be best to get in touch with our friendly Sales team on 13 19 17 to have a better look at what we can offer you at your residential address :)
      Please let us know how you go.

      – Jade

  48. Hugh says:

    We live in the suburb of Fraser in Canberra, the nation’s capital. The NBN is currently not even planned in our area. We get a MAXIMUM of 1.5 Mbps (we are 4 km from the nearest exchange).
    That’s right we get only ADSL1 speeds, not even low ADSL2. It has been like this for many years. The thought that this government is going to saddle us with the poor quality fibre-to-the-node when we eventually do get proper broadband fills me with real anger. I am old enough to remember when Howard’s Communication Minister Helen Coonan told us that 512 kbps would be “good enough” for all future needs. Talk about Groundhog Day!

  49. Brian Nowell says:

    I know where the NBN rollout fault lies. I’m trusting that by the time it comes to my premises that the “state of the ark” is available, at my affordability.

    Yes, we can be impatient, but I do feel very strongly for those rural and remote areas that cannot even receive internet; that is NOT an IINET issue but one of bureaucracy.

  50. Nathan says:

    Is iiNet considering selling or cutting a deal with NBN Co for the HFC networks they own? I get 100Mbit/s+ HFC cable with iiNet in Geelong, and while it seems stupid to me that nbn co is installing FTTN/P in Geelong with such a widespread HFC network already deployed; I am however quite pleased with the fairly low over saturation/subscription of the HFC network in Geelong at present and feel this would go backwards should iiNet sell the network.

    Additionally, iiNet could claim bragging rights? I’ve see you pushing DOCIS3.1 speeds occasionally, testing the network to beat NBN speeds are we? I managed 400/50 a few weeks ago!!

  51. Stephen says:

    Note to rural people complaining about their prospects of getting a modern internet connection. So you didn’t want Tony Abbott to “rip it out of the ground”???

  52. Lindsay Robinson says:

    If I live in the Redcliffe area just connected to the HFC NBN and am a current iinet ADSL customer, is it possible to change or become part of the trial?

    • Brianna Burgess says:

      Thanks for expressing interest, Lindsay. We aren’t able to take any further participants for the trial. However we will be in touch when we’re in the market to offer NBN HFC services in Redcliffe.

      – Brianna

  53. Sandy says:

    Wow! An incredible 20 homes in Qld, after many years of waiting. What incredible progress!!

  54. Murray Legro says:

    any plans by IInet to sell the HFC infrastructure in Ballarat to NBN, as it seems illogical to have dual services to current HFC customers. If it happened i would not change my retailer IINet as i am happy wth the service

  55. John Bailey says:

    Like many others, I just want to know when I will have any NBN service available so we can have reliable internet. As Iinet’s records will show, our current ADSL is reasonably fast but very unreliable – sometimes off the air for days at a time. I did register on the Iinet NBN register a couple of years ago, but have never heard anything from them. We live in Como, WA and were scheduled to have fibre installed. Fibre NBN is now available all around us, but unfortunately our thin slice in the middle of the South Perth peninsula was removed from the rollout. Supposedly HFC will be available sometime; but when? At least then we will be served by 20 year old copper instead of 70 year old copper.

    • Reece Hatton says:

      Hi John,

      Been looking into this one, and I believe that the final area surrounding Penrhos in Como not yet serviced by nbn is due to go live by the end of the year with HFC. This information can be found at under the planned brownfield rollout for fixed line services. Hopefully we’ll see you online soon!

      – Reece

  56. John Bailey says:

    Thanks Reece, I know that the NBN 3 year plan talks about the “South Perth(Como)” now being “H2 2016”. However 18 months ago it was showing the whole 6SPT-06 area being FTTP in November 2015, so I’ve ceased believing any of those predictions. In the link that you sent I am assuming that we are in the “Unknown (Removed) 2,700(13%)” area. The “6SPT-XX (Hybrid Fibre-Coaxial)”, “~H2 2016”, probably means we will have something by the end of 2017! If iinet want a DOCIS 3.1 in the area then let me know.

    • Reece Hatton says:

      Hi John,

      Completely understand the apprehension there, however this is the most up-to-date information that we have at the moment, and have no reason to believe it requires further revision at this stage. We generally see rollouts completed in the following 6 months of the area going ready-for-service, however this is of course dependent on the work required unique to the area.

      We’ll touch base if there’s any opportunity for further testing before we launch!

      – Reece

  57. John Bailey says:

    Thanks Reece,
    As it happens we have been had two major outages since my last comment. One for 39 hours and another for 7.5 hours, involving many hours on the phone to iinet. Anything for reliable internet – we are on the verge of switching to Telstra cable.

  58. Gary Smith says:

    Hi guys, Just wondering what is the plan for us in Canberra that are already connected via the existing former TransAct fibre network? Is this to form part of the NBN or not.