All Australians have the right to reliable broadband, even during busy periods. But rights differ from reality, and many customers are not getting the broadband speeds they expect. As well as mandating basic minimum broadband speeds for all – regulators around the world are turning their attention to the misleading promotion of “up to” speeds.

Retail service providers have long advertised the maximum possible Internet speed performance levels that might possibly be delivered, rather than the real speeds that consumers can expect during busy periods – from 7pm to 11pm. This is set to change following the release of new Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) guidelines, stating that it is no longer acceptable for retailers to mislead consumers by advertising “up to” speeds.

Retailers must now inform consumers of the real, or “at least”, speeds that they typically deliver on their broadband plans. The aim is to improve the customer experience by maximising throughput, improving stability and meeting guaranteed speeds.

The customer experience is enhanced when using nbn- ready gateways that are designed to optimise high- speed broadband via the nbn™ network. The devices should be equipped with the advanced software needed to provide Quality of Service, and ensure that those who sign up for an nbn plan will receive the fastest available Internet speed, performance and reliability.

The days of supplying the simplest and cheapest gateway to end-users are gone. The router/gateway is the RSPs “point-of-presence” in the home, and it is the mechanism by which an RSP should be differentiating their service offering. Future-thinking RSPs are now actively considering using their gateway to supply new advanced functionality. In addition, the gateway can provide modern diagnostics to allow the RSP to check that their service is running to specification (and adhere to one of ACCCs guidelines around being able to remotely diagnose your service).

Surplus processing power and memory requirements are required to improve the customer experience. Many gateways being supplied today are a “minimum viable product” – and as such can only do the basics. If an RSP wants to future-proof their offering and provide “stickiness”, then the gateway needs “future capacity” built-in today.

Under the new ACCC guidelines, factors known to affect service performance should also be disclosed to consumers, and service providers should have systems in place to diagnose and resolve broadband speed issues. NetComm Wireless’ nbn-ready modem gateways provide true management and diagnostics, as well as the headroom needed to run performance tests.

NetComm Wireless has commenced the supply of FTTdp DPUs specifically designed for the nbn Fibre-to-the-Curb (FTTC) rollout, which is scheduled for early 2018. NetComm Wireless has also launched a complimentary range of nbn-ready modems to provide advanced software functionality that is purpose-built to interoperate with the FTTdp units, or any other nbn service, to ensure that customers get the service they expect.

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