NBN Frequently Asked Questions

All your burning questions about the NBN rollout, equipment and installation answered.

General | Technology and Rollout | Service Class

General FAQ


Where does the data come from?

The finder NBN Tracker obtains its data from the limited publicly available information from NBN Co. We also mix this with a substantial set of information provided by reputable third-parties, to provide comprehensive information about the NBN.


Where does that 3 year plan info come from?

The finder NBN Tracker has been given a more detailed 3 year construction plan information which includes information such as indicative localities, expected build commencement dates and expected ready for service dates. We cannot provide any link for you to verify this information yourself, but we assure you that it is accurate to the best of our knowledge. Orange shading provides a very rough visualisation of the 3 year construction plan. It is generated using the list of suburbs covered or partially covered by the plan. It is not nbn™'s actual footprint, and will change when build commences in this area. As you zoom into the rollout map, the orange fuzzy shades will disappear as it can only be used for a rough high-level guess. It is approximated by finding the city/town centre of each of the indicative localities.


How often is this information updated?

We try to keep all information as up-to-date as possible. But since we rely heavily on information provided by external parties, information may be delayed.


When will I get NBN?

Your first point of reference would be finder's NBN tracker. When you search your address in the NBN tracker, you're address with be marked with Ready for Service, Build Commenced, Remediation, 3 Year Plan, Wireless Tower or not at all. Here is a guide to understanding what each marker means.

MarkerStatusMeaning
ready for serviceReady for Service NBN is switched on in your area and you're eligible for its services. Note which technology is available at your address under Rollout Type and click Compare NBN plans to get started.
build commencedBuild CommencedThe NBN rollout has begun in your area but is not quite ready. Check the Build Started date and Estimated End Date for a better idea of when NBN will be available to you. You can also sign up for email updates through our NBN tracker to get notified when the NBN is ready in your area.
remedialRemediationRemediation occurs in an area where Telstra has leased its pits and pipes to the nbnco. In these situations, the nbnco has to wait on Telstra to update its infrastructure before commencing the build.
3 year plan3 Year PlanIf your property is marked as 3 Year Plan it means there are plans to rollout the NBN in your area, but no official rollout date has been set. Check the First build expected and Last build expected dates to get a better idea of when the nbn rollout dates.

What are Greenfields and Brownfields?

These terms are used to describe the rollout areas the NBN is being built into. Greenfields refers to new estates where fibre can be built alongside other utilities as the area is developed. Brownfields refers to established areas where the NBN is being rolled out.


How do I switch from ADSL to NBN?

Switching to NBN is as simple as contacting your internet service provider (ISP). If your home is NBN ready, most ISPs will transfer you to an NBN plan free of charge. You can compare a wide range of NBN plans using the finder broadband plan comparison engine.


My property is NBN ready. How long do I have to switch?

Once the NBN is available at your address, you typically have about 18 months to switch. Traditional phone and services will be disconnected after that. It's important to get switched over before the cutoff date as you run the risk of losing your home phone number if you let it run over. The nbnco will send you reminders leading up to the cutoff, but it's always a good idea to get it sorted nice and early.


What needs to be installed?

If your property is eligible for Fibre to the premises (FTTP), you will need to have a utility box and a connection box installed. The utility box or Premises Connection Device (PCD) is installed on an exterior wall, preferably close to the electrical meter or distribution board. It's required to be at least 410mm off the ground, 250mm away from taps, drainpipes and gas, electricity and water meters. The connection box is attached to an interior wall and is typically located opposite the exterior utility box. The connection box needs to be placed first and foremost in an accessible and visible location.


Quick Terminology


Rollout Region

A rollout region relates to the rollout construction sequencing in a particular area. For example, the Brownfields Rollout in NSW Armidale 06 is assigned the Rollout Region ID 2ARM-06. However, the Greenfields Rollout (new development) "The Foothills – Stage 1" is also geographically part of the Armidale 06 (2ARM-06) Service Area Module. However, the Rollout Region ID for this Greenfields rollout is AYCA-SQ3NT as it was sequenced and constructed separately from the primary Brownfields rollout.


Access Distribution Area

An Access Distribution Area (ADA), previously Fibre Distribution Area (FDA) or Distribution Area (DA), is a geographical subset of premises serviced by a common interconnection point.For NBN Fibre areas, this is an area serviced by a common Fibre Distribution Hub (FDH). For NBN Copper areas, this is an area serviced by a common NBN Node. For NBN HFC areas, this is an area serviced by a common NBN Node.


Service Area Module

A Service Area Module (SAM), or previously Fibre Serving Area Module (FSAM), is a geographical subset of premises typically containing between 2000 — 3000 premises.


Fixed-Line Service Area

A Fixed-Line Serving Area (FSA), or previously Fibre Serving Area (FSA), is a group of Service Area Modules serviced by a common Fibre Access Node (FAN).


Wireless Serving Area

A Wireless Serving Area (WSA) consists of a group of Wireless Sites (or towers) serviced by a common Fibre Access Node (FAN).


Wireless Site

A Wireless Site, sometimes referred as being a Wireless Serving Area Module (WSAM), is the area serviced by a single nbn™ Fixed Wireless tower.


Connectivity Service Area

A Connectivity Service Area (CSA) is typically the area serviced by a single Point of Interconnect, except for Interim CSAs. Interim CSAs typically share a similar geographical footprint to its permanent counterpart but are designated to interim Point of Interconnect.


Point of Interconnect

A Point of Interconnect (POI), is one of 121 sites around Australia where Retail Service Provider (ISPs, or phone providers) connect their network to the NBN network to service end-users.


Fibre Access Node

A Fibre Access Node (FAN), is typically a facility (normally in Telstra exchanges) that houses active equipment to serve a Fixed-Line Serving Area and/or Wireless Serving Area. They connect up to a POI to provide retail services to end users.


Ready for Service

Ready for Service is a status given by nbn™ that releases a Rollout Region to Retail Service Providers, allowing them to connect customers to the NBN.For premises in the fixed-line footprint, the 18-month Telstra network switch-off commences on the day that nbn™ declares the rollout region Ready for Service. This is known as the Disconnection Commencement Date. Prior to October 2014 for fixed-line areas, this declaration was made once 90% of premises in an NBN rollout region are considered "passed" by the network. After October 2014 for fixed-line areas, this declaration was made once at least 30% of premises in an NBN rollout region had their external (PCD) installation completed.


Build Commenced

The Build Commenced phase indicates that nbn™ has approved the Detailed Design Document and has issued contract instructions to their construction partners to commence the building of the network in the area.


Build Preparation

The Build Preparation phase, for the Brownfields Fibre rollout, indicates that nbn™ has issued remediation notices to Telstra to commence remediating pit and pipe infrastructure in the rollout area.


18 Month Plan

The 18 month plan phase indicates that nbn™ has commenced preliminary designs in this area and is planning on commencing a rollout in the designated area within 18 months.


NTD (Network Termination Device)

An NTD, or an NBN Connection Box, is a device located within an NBN Fibre, NBN Fixed Wireless or NBN Satellite premises. These devices provide up to 4 UNI-D ports, allowing customers to connect up to 4 separate data services from different providers.An NBN Fibre NTD also features 2 UNI-V ports, which allows service providers to emulate existing phone services.


PCD (Premises Connection Device)

A PCD, or an NBN Utility Box, is a device located on the exterior of an NBN Fibre premises. It is the connection point for the external fibre from the street to the edge of the NBN Fibre premises. An internal fibre is then connected from this PCD to the NTD which is usually installed inside the user's premises.


PCD (Premises Connection Device)

A PCD, or an NBN Utility Box, is a device located on the exterior of an NBN Fibre premises. It is the connection point for the external fibre from the street to the edge of the NBN Fibre premises. An internal fibre is then connected from this PCD to the NTD which is usually installed inside the user's premises.


Technology / Rollout Types


Brownfields Rollout

These are rollouts that happen in existing built-up areas.


Greenfields Rollout

These are rollouts that happen in new developments or estates. Generally, if these premises are within the fixed-line footprint, they will have access to Fibre to the Premises technology.


Fibre to the Premises

Fibre to the Premises is one of the many technologies in the Multi-Technology Mix that nbn™ will utilise. Under this technology, premises will be connected directly with fibre using GPON (Gigabit Passive Optical Network).Customers in this footprint will have an NBN utility box (or PCD) and an NBN connection box (NTD) installed at the premises to access the network. Access speeds achievable on this network range from 12/1 Mbps to 1000/400 Mbps.


Fibre to the Basement

Fibre to the Basement is one of the many technologies in the Multi-Technology Mix that nbn™ will utilise. Under this technology, fibre will enter an apartment block or complex where nbn™ installs active equipment (DSLAM) to deliver the final connection over the copper network using vectored VDSL2 technology.Customers in this footprint will need to purchase their own VDSL2 modem or will use one supplied by their service provider. Access speeds achievable on this network range from 12/1 Mbps and up to 100/40 Mbps depending on many factors such as the quality of the copper wiring in the building, distance from the active equipment and any signal interference.


Fibre to the Node

Fibre to the Node is one of the many technologies in the Multi-Technology Mix that nbn™ will utilise. Under this technology, fibre will enter a distribution area where nbn™ installs an NBN Node to deliver the final connection over the copper network using vectored VDSL2 technology.


Hybrid-Fibre Coaxial (HFC)

HFC is one of the many technologies in the Multi-Technology Mix that nbn™ will utilise. Under this technology, fibre will enter a distribution area where nbn™ installs an NBN Optical Node to deliver the final connection over cable TV / coaxial network using DOCSIS 3.0 technology.Customers in this footprint will need to purchase their own DOCSIS cable modem. Access speeds achievable on this network range from 12/1 Mbps and up to 100/40 Mbps depending on many factors such as the number of customers connected to the same node (congestion) and any signal interference.


Fixed Wireless

Premises in the Fixed Wireless footprint will utilise nbn™'s 4G LTE network to access high-speed broadband. A rooftop antenna and a Network Termination Device will be installed at the customer's premises to access the network.The benefit of nbn™'s wireless network versus traditional carrier networks is low cost (nbn™ charges the RSP the same charges as the fixed-line footprint), high speeds (customers can access speed tiers of 12/1 Mbps, 25/5 Mbps and up to 50/20 Mbps) and stable speeds. Only premises within the set Fixed Wireless footprint can access the network, meaning it is less likely to be congested compared with traditional mobile phone networks.


Service Classes

Service Classes are numbers used to represent the serviceability status of a particular location in the NBN network.

Service ClassService Class Definition
Service Class 0The location is planned to be serviceable by fibre
Service Class 1The location is serviceable by fibre, no PCD or NTD in place
Service Class 2The location is serviceable by fibre, PCD installed, no NTD in place
Service Class 3The location is serviceable by fibre, PCD and NTD in place
Service Class 4The location is planned to be serviceable by fixed wireless
Service Class 5The location is serviceable by fixed wireless, no antenna and NTD in place
Service Class 6The location is serviceable by fixed wireless, antenna and NTD in place
Service Class 7The location is planned to be serviceable by satellite
Service Class 8The location is serviceable by satellite but no satellite dish / NTD yet in place
Service Class 9The location is serviced by satellite (dish and NTD in place)
Service Class 10The location is planned to be serviceable by copper
Service Class 11The location is serviceable by copper, copper lead-in required
Service Class 12The location is serviceable by copper, jumpering is required
Service Class 13The location is serviceable by copper, infrastructure in place
Service Class 20The location is serviceable by cable (HFC)
Service Class 21The location is within the HFC footprint, no drop, wall plate or NTD
Service Class 22The location is within the HFC footprint, drop in place, no wall plate or NTD
Service Class 23The location is within the HFC footprint, drop and wall plate in place, no NTD
Service Class 24The location is within the HFC footprint, drop, wall plate and NTD in place

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