100,000 reasons to love nbn™ Sky Muster™ satellite service

5-minute read
With 100,000 premises now connected to nbn™ Sky Muster™, we reflect on the difference the satellite service is making in regional, rural and remote Australia.

Since 2015, the nbn™ Sky Muster™ satellite service has been helping Australians living in regional, rural and remote areas to connect to the world around them.

In many cases, it was the first time ever that fast broadband was available. So, understandably, its arrival made a significant difference to the way they lived, worked and relaxed.

Today, in these COVID-19 times, the rest of us can better appreciate just what a difference access to fast broadband can mean.

Work, school and homelife have largely converged and – for a great number of Australians – their livelihoods, learning and leisure time have come to rely heavily on connectivity.

It seems a fitting time then, to have recently welcomed our 100,000th customer on the nbn™ Sky Muster satellite service.  

Data demand and supply

And it’s not just connections to the nbn™ network that have increased over time – and with help from COVID-19 – but data demand too.

Since data download limits on our standard nbn™ Sky Muster™ service were temporarily increased in response to social distancing measures, data consumption on the service has increased by close to 50 per cent on average.

Similarly, the long-term increase in the range of unmetered applications on our nbn™ Sky Muster™ Plus services from 1 April 2020 has seen 70 per cent of customer internet usage so far being unmetered.

Bourke, New South Wales.

This has led average nbn™ Sky Muster™ Plus data consumption, on a weekly basis, to almost double.

Says Gavin Williams, Chief Development Officer, Regional and Remote at nbn, “People have responded positively to the increase to data limits on standard Sky Muster™ plans and the enhanced nbn™ Sky Muster™ Plus plans, with 100,000 rural and remote Australians now taking advantage of the economic and social benefits that the nbn™ network helps to enable.”

Connecting therapy through nbn™ Sky Muster™

Just one of the 100,000 connections on the nbn™ Sky Muster™ satellite network is at Simone Dudley’s place.

And it’s not just those living and working at Simone’s Deniliquin farm in regional New South Wales that are making the most of it – hundreds of people with disabilities across Australia and in Asia are benefiting, too.

That’s because Simone is co-founder of Therapy Connect, a telehealth company that provides allied health services completely online.

From her home on the farm, Simone uses connectivity via the nbn™ Sky Muster™ satellite service to help run the flourishing business alongside fellow founder, Sue Cameron – who’s also located on a farm interstate in regional Victoria.

This access to fast broadband also enables Simone to connect with their team of more than 30 practitioners, who all work remotely in locations across Australia, and to conduct occupational therapy, speech pathology, psychology, physiotherapy or dietetics sessions with clients.

“People need to be able to access quality health services when they need them and at the frequency they need – regardless of their postcode,” says Simone.

Simone Dudley from Therapy Connect.

“We’ve been researching, developing and building our model for six years, leading the way to support rural and remote families.

“We are extremely proud of the high-quality service we deliver, especially during COVID-19, where it is largely business as usual for Therapy Connect, thanks to our online business model.”

And it’s not only Simone benefiting from the Sky Muster™ connection at home.

Back from boarding school and university due to the COVID-19-related ‘lockdown’, her three children have been tapping into Sky Muster™ to reach teachers, peers, lectures and tutorials.

“So, between this and the kids being home, accessing the Sky Muster™ service has never been more important to our family or my business.”

Being able to maintain the rural life she loves, while supporting people with disabilities across Australia with quality telehealth was made possible with the help of the nbn™ Sky Muster™ satellite service.  

Simone conducting a telehealth session with one of her clients.

The connectivity has changed her life, says Simone.

"Our business is underpinned by the digital infrastructure enabled by nbn™ Sky Muster™.

“Before I connected to Sky Muster™, I would commute 36 kilometres into town to access [an] internet connection to deliver telehealth therapy sessions, and to support our team and business activities.

“This came at significant personal cost in terms of time and expense for travel, and limitations around scheduling business meetings and activities.

“Now, I have complete control and flexibility.

“I can walk 10 metres into my home office at any moment of the day or night for the same activities, meaning my productivity is significantly increased.

“In my opinion, nbn™ Sky Muster™ provides access and equity to essential digital infrastructure for regional businesses, and Therapy Connect is a great example.”

Simone (on screen) and her client during a telehealth session.

With more than 98 per cent of homes and businesses in regional Australia now able to order a service over the nbn™ network, it’s never been a better time to take advantage of the benefits of connectivity.

Whether it’s competing in the global economy, enjoying some well-deserved screen-downtime after a long day in the virtual office or classroom, or catching up with loved ones, nbn is here for you.

* nbn is very happy with Simone and Therapy Connect’s experience with the nbn™ broadband access network. Of course, end customer experiences may vary. Your experience, including the speeds actually achieved over the nbn™ network, depends on the nbn™ access network technology and configuration over which services are delivered to your premises, whether you are using the internet during the busy period, and some factors outside nbn’s control (like your equipment quality, software, broadband plan, signal reception and how your service provider designs its network). Satellite end customers may also experience latency.