Skip to the article content

Getting connected to services over the nbn™ network: FTTN

A guide for homes and businesses that have or are set to order a service over the Fibre-to-the-Node (FTTN) nbn™ network.

Fibre-to-the-Node (FTTN) is a Fixed Line technology that’s part of the nbn™ Multi-Technology Mix, which helps homes and businesses connect to services over the nbn™ network.

Services over the FTTN network use fibre cabling to street cabinets or ‘nodes’. These nodes then connect to Australian homes and businesses via existing copper cabling – around two thirds of end users connected to services over the FTTN network are within 400 metres of their FTTN cabinet.

Switching over to services over the nbn™ network

To begin, note that nbn is a wholesaler, which means we sell directly to Retail Service Providers (RSPs) and not to the end user.

Once an area is ready for service (RFS), whether it is an FTTN area or not, switching is not automatic. Here’s how to get going:

Getting your house made ready for service is charge free for standard nbn installations.

Once your home or business is RFS, providing you do have current copper services such as home phone or ADSL2+, you contact your preferred RSP to transition them across to the nbn™ network. Speak to your RSP to see if any other charges apply, such as set up or activation fees.

If your area is RFS and you would like to see what RSPs are available for services over the nbn™ network, you can visit the nbn™ website here.

Once a preferred service provider has been selected, you can contact your chosen provider to discuss the plan that will best suit your needs.

Your RSP can help select a plan, arrange the date your RFS premises will be connected to services over the nbn™ network, and provide other advice you might need.

You can speak with your preferred RSP to discuss any additional fees related to wiring, cabling, appointments or connection.

For example, if you would like to continue to use all phone sockets in your home for landline use, or use more than one phone line, requirements of additional installation activities should be discussed with a preferred RSP. This may require additional cabling to be installed by a registered technician.

You can also speak with a preferred RSP to discuss keeping an existing landline phone number, which should be possible over the nbn™ network.

Does anyone have to be home to meet an installer?

Because of the nature of FTTN technology, there’s usually no need for an end user to be at home to meet an approved nbn™ installer for equipment installation.

The technology utilises some of the pre-existing copper network that already leads in to the premises, meaning that (in most cases) no new internal or external hardware needs to be installed by an nbn™ installer.

Will an existing modem work?

It’s possible that an end-user’s existing modem will work for an FTTN connection, but it must be both VDSL2 compatible and nbn-approved to connect to services over the nbn™ network via FTTN in RFS areas.

An ADSL modem will not work, unless it is also nbn™ network and VDSL2 compatible.

End users should speak with their preferred RSP to discuss FTTN modem requirements, as some RSPs may require end users to use a specific device in order for the service to work, or receive full support.

Does nbn supply a new modem?

nbn does not supply modems for FTTN.

Instead, your preferred RSP should provide a VDSL2-compatible, nbn-approved modem.

At-home networking requirements

Inbuilt Ethernet cable support is a standard feature found on a VDSL2-compatible nbn-approved modem that connects an end-user premises to services over the nbn™ network via FTTN.

If an end user in a ready for service FTTN area has ordered a service over the nbn™ network and wishes to connect devices wirelessly (via wi-fi) to their home or business network, wi-fi is also a standard feature built in to most VDSL2-compatible nbn-approved modems.

However, it is also possible to purchase a wi-fi router separately and connect it to an nbn-approved VDSL2 modem, should anyone wish to do that.

Deadline for signing up to the nbn™ network for affected services in an RFS area

Once an FTTN area is RFS, affected homes and businesses inside that area will be notified of the timeframe they have to switch over to a service via the nbn™ network through a preferred RSP.*

This timeframe is generally 18 months, but can vary, and reminders will be provided during this period.

Switching to a plan for services over the nbn™ network is not instantaneous; for affected services, it’s advisable to sign up for a plan with a preferred RSP well in advance of the 18-month switch-off date.

After the switch-off date

Once an FTTN area is RFS, services provided over the nbn™ network will be replacing landline phone and internet services provided over most of the existing landline networks within the fixed line footprint.*

This means that once an area is RFS and the 18-month switch-off date has passed, pre-existing landline phone and internet connections (that have not switched to services over the nbn™ network) will no longer work.

Landline phone services over the new nbn™ network use Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services, which must be plugged in to the VDSL2-compatible nbn-approved modem. A preferred RSP will advise you on how to connect a landline phone to the relevant modem port.

If you wish to continue using your landline sockets throughout the home for connecting landline devices, you can discuss this with your selected RSP or a licenced technician.

Foxtel Pay TV via satellite or Telstra cable will not be disconnected as part of the nbn™ rollout.

Certain services provided over existing fibre networks, such as health, education and in-building networks, may not be affected.

For homes or businesses with autodiallers, medical alarms# or emergency call buttons; monitored fire or security alarms; lift emergency phones; and/or fax machines or TTY devices, these may be impacted by the switch-off.End users who use these devices should contact the equipment provider in advance of switching to services over the nbn™ network to discuss compatibility and alternatives.

End users with fire alarms or lift emergency phones can call 1800 227 300, or visit this link to register these devices.

Those with medical alarms# can also call 1800 227 300, or visit this link to register these devices.

Registering these devices will help nbn identify support requirements and, if your services are affected, help avoid a break in services once the existing network is switched off.*

You can also can speak with your preferred RSP for more information on services that will be affected and for the scheduled switch-off date in specific areas.

Check your address to see if you can connect to the nbn™ network.

* Services provided over the nbn™ network will be replacing phone and internet services provided over most of the existing landline networks, including copper and the majority of HFC networks within the fixed line footprint. Services provided over existing fibre networks (including in-building, health and education networks) and some special and business services may not be affected. To find out if your services will be affected, please contact your current phone or internet provider. For more information, visit or call 1800 687 626.

# The nbn™ network will replace most of the existing landline phone and internet networks. It also involves new technologies, which some existing devices may not be compatible with. That means, if you have a medical alarm it's important that you register it with nbn and call your medical alarm provider for advice and to find out if your service will work on the nbn™ network. Make sure you do this well before your existing landline phone network is disconnected. Registering your alarm with nbn is free and helps us identify homes where support may be needed to help minimise a break in services. To register, visit: or call 1800 227 300, 9am to 5pm, AEST Monday to Friday.

You might also like