Australian telco incumbent Telstra has finally flicked the switch for uncapped high-speed ADSL and ADSL2+ broadband services. However, its new 24Mbit/s-capable ADSL2+ will only be sold in locations where competitors already offer the same service.
The availability comes some 18 months after its competitors, including iiNet and Internode, began offering ADSL2+ speeds. Until now, Telstra’s fastest DSL offering has been capped at 1.5Mbit/s.
Telstra’s new uncapped ADSL plans can reach speeds of 8Mbit/s and will cover 2,400 exchanges and 91% of the Australian population. Its limited ADSL2+ offering will allow download speeds of up to 20Mbit/s, just shy of this technology’s 24Mbit/s capacity.
In an Australian Stock Exchange statement, Telstra’s BigPond group managing director, Justin Milne, said the decision to limit exchanges to locations where competitors also offer ADSL2+ was due to “regulatory constraints”.
“Clearly, this is a very defensive move by Telstra and not at all an offensive one,” says Ovum research director David Kennedy. “It’s consistent with that fact that they are not looking for a fight from their ADSL2+ competitors because they are not undercutting their prices.”
Telstra’s high speed 20,000/10,00kbit/s 60GB plan is priced at A$149.95 (NZ$174) per month. In comparison, Internode offers its high-speed 24,000/10,00kbit/s 80GB plan for A$119.95 (NZ$138) per month.
Ovum’s Kennedy says that despite having the technical capability since last year to offer ADSL2+ services, Telstra had delayed availability while it sought clarification from the ACCC that it would not have to provide competitors with access to its ADSL2+ infrastructure.