The countdown to commercial nbn™ Sky Muster satellite services in 2016January 27, 2016 5:37 am
I would like to wish everyone the very best for the New Year.
When Sky Muster was launched into orbit last year, it carried the mission of bringing better internet to the bush starting this year. Now that the New Year is here, the most important count down has started for rural and remote Australians who are anticipating the commercial release of nbn™ Sky Muster satellite services.
In the lead-up to the scheduled release of our Activ8me commercial nbn™ Sky Muster satellite services, I will continue to provide updates over the coming months in my blog.
The rollout testing is going well and nbn™ has advised at this stage they are still on target for commercial launch (late-April). I have provided an update below on the progress of recent testing.
We are in the middle of testing the operational interface with nbn™. Completion of this process will be approved by nbn™ pending successful completion of required tasks.
We have continued testing of our service in our test facility. We made some modifications in conjunction with nbn™ technicians and initial test results have passedthe high operating standards set by nbn™ as monitored by our system diagnostics.
As far as the field trial goes, we have been testing the order fulfilment process. We provided feedback to nbn™ on this process, resulting in the successful processing of service orders for Activ8me field trial customers (selected at the discretion of nbn™). So far we have over 20 Activ8me customers installed with new nbn™ satellite equipment for testing purposes.
A customer of Activ8me, who operates Paradise Gardens Cottages in Apollo Bay, has recently started using the new satellite service as part of the field trial. They explained that the new nbn satellite service is 100 times better and makes life easier. They have noticed the quickness and can now watch Netflix movies. Their daughter can now also easily access information online to help with her Year 12 studies. They no longer have to drive her into the local town library to use the internet.
We have created a range of competitive plans to suit basic internet usage for email and online banking through to heavier internet use for streaming, education and business purposes. From 28th January 2016, nbn™ satellite Sky Muster plans will be available on our website. Activ8me customers who have already selected a Sky Muster plan will be able to change plans, provided we adhere to the nbn™ Fair Use Policy requirements. We’ll provide a process on how to do this prior to commercial launch.
All of our Sky Muster plans include additional bonus off-peak data which can be used between 1am – 7am (local time). I recommend that customers look at the off-peak data as bonus data, that will be helpful for software updates and large downloads that youschedule during this time. The peak data time is 7am – 1am (local time). With our plans there are no surprise excess data charges. If you reach your monthly data allowance your service will slow to 128kbps. Provided we adhere to the nbn™ Fair Use Policy requirements, data blocks will be available to resume your speed and give you extra data for the month. Plus, a standard installation of the new nbn™ satellite equipment will be at no cost to you, and equipment ownership and maintenance remains the responsibility of nbn™ which will provide a lifetime equipment warranty.
As mentioned in my December blog, the new satellites are designed to deliver download speeds of up to 25Mbps – around five times what people are able to access on the current nbn™ Interim Satellite Service (ISS). The standard speed of up to 12/1Mbps is included in our plan price. It will be just $5 extra per month for faster speeds of up to 25/5Mbps. Please note these are the maximum speeds, actual and average speeds may differ throughout the day.
Upon commercial launch, each nbn™ satellite retail service provider will receive a monthly allocation for submission of installations to nbn™. The order of installations will be assessed by nbn™’s capacity in the region.
While the priority has been on working closely with nbn™ to work towards the commercial launch, Activ8me continues to be proactive in understanding critical issues faced by rural and remote Australia. Recently, managers from the Activ8me executive team have completed a 10,000km journey over 18 days across rural locations of Australia. This included visiting remotely located Activ8me customer, Tanya Brooks, who runs a large family station in the Northern Territory and is the mother of Bailey Brooks. Bailey won anbn™ competition to name the Sky Muster satellite. Tanya discussed her current difficulties that will be improved with a new nbn™ satellite service, including educating her three children and online medical assistance.
We will continue to work with the Australian Government, as well as organisations such as the NSW Farmers and the Isolated Children’s Parent Association in order to provide working solutions to remote problems requiring high powered satellite bandwidth.
High-speed satellite broadband bridges the digital divide and opens up significant new opportunities for rural and remote Australians. I personally look forward to assisting the delivery of solutions to solve these long-experienced problems.
I urge you to take a look at our nbn™ Sky Muster satellite plans.
We are taking applications from existing as well as new customers. If you have friends and/or neighbours interested in a new satellite service, please share my blog and let them know that our plans have now been released. To sign-up call 13 22 88.
Activ8me customers who have already selected a Sky Muster plan will be able to change plans, provided we adhere to the nbn™ Fair Use Policy requirements. We’ll provide a process on how to do this prior to commercial launch.