Details sought on aerial NBN trial

TASMANIA'S ICT sector has called for details about the trial of an aerial NBN rollout to be made clear before the state goes to the polls next weekend.

Plans for a trial were announced two weeks ago after a meeting between Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Tasmanian Liberal leader Will Hodgman.

But details about the size, location and start date of the trial are yet to be finalised.

TasICT executive officer Dean Winter said voters deserved to know more about when and where the technology would be rolled out.

"What this election has proved is how powerful the NBN is in terms of people's votes," Mr Winter said.

"An aerial NBN rollout would have a real impact on towns and suburbs otherwise unlikely to receive NBN connections until 2015 or later."

NBNCo corporate services head Kevin Brown told a Senate Estimates hearing last week the company was in discussions with Visionstream and Aurora to establish the location and design for the aerial trial.

"We need to pick the right place and then get the design done to enable us to string the cables up," he said.

"I would expect that to be finalised within the next month. "

An Aurora spokesman yesterday said the company remained committed to the trial.

"Our network of poles infrastructure is certainly available should it be required for the rollout," he said.Premier Lara Giddings said yesterday a trial of the aerial method was unnecessary because the method had already been used to deliver the NBN to more than 4000 Tasmanian homes.


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