nbn™ Sky Muster™ Plus to provide unmetered data for internet essentials
NBN Co today announced the launch of its Sky Muster™ Plus wholesale product, designed to help provide peace of mind by allowing homes and small businesses in the nbn™ satellite footprint to access unmetered data for essential online activities.*
Insights from a Sky Muster™ Plus trial, which ran from 7 June until 8 August 2019, revealed four out of five existing Sky Muster™ customers reported an improvement in their online experience during the trial, with many reporting the unmetered data was particularly helpful when it came to managing their overall data usage.
The ability to stream entertainment with the confidence it will not affect day-to-day activities such as internet banking and email was an important factor for residential customers. People who use the internet for business or work, whether regularly or from time-to-time, made up two-thirds of the survey sample, and were particularly satisfied with Sky Muster™ Plus compared to their previous service.
Activities including select web browsing, email, and PC and smartphone operating system updates*^
do not count towards the plan’s monthly data allowance. All other online activities such as video and audio streaming remain subject to monthly peak and off-peak metered data allowances, with wholesale speeds being slowed if data limits are exceeded.
Three wholesale plans with different metered data allowances will be available to participating retail service providers based on a wholesale speed tier of 25/5 Mbps. Sky Muster™ Plus customers will from time-to-time experience wholesale speed bursts above 25/5Mbps, subject to available network capacity.**
First announced in November 2018, Sky Muster™ Plus was developed in consultation with NBN Co’s industry partners and existing Sky Muster™ customers, and is part of NBN Co’s ongoing commitment to help meet the broadband needs of regional and remote Australians.
Research released by NBN Co last year forecast the availability of the nbn™ broadband access network will drive an additional $5.3 billion in gross domestic product (GDP) and help create up to 20,000 additional jobs in regional Australia by FY21.
The research also shows people living in regional nbn™ connected areas are 40 per cent more likely than people living in regional non-nbn™ connected areas to use the internet to keep in touch with loved ones. By comparison, people living in metropolitan nbn™ connected areas are 30 per cent more likely to use their home broadband to socialise compared to people living in metropolitan non-nbn™ connected areas.
NBN Co’s CEO Stephen Rue said:
“The nbn™ access network was designed to help lift the digital capability of Australia, and to champion social and economic progress through connectivity. Our Sky Muster™ satellite services are a critical part of that, and I’m delighted to officially announce the launch of our new Sky Muster™ Plus product.
“I’m proud to see the team at NBN Co working together with our key stakeholders and industry partners to continue to ambitiously explore new ways to provide essential broadband services to rural and remote Australians.
“Early insights show that around one third of the total data used in July was unmetered. This not only frees up more data for metered activities such as video streaming or accessing cloud storage but will also provide comfort to customers who can continue to access essential internet services such as online banking any time. We know this is particularly important for small businesses, which are critical to local communities.”*
Customers and stakeholder groups who made the switch from Sky Muster™ to Sky Muster™ Plus plans during the trial have welcomed the product.
Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association, Queensland Vice President, Louise Martin said:
“It is so great to see that Sky Muster™ Plus delivered on its promise. We often have five teenagers at home over the holidays which means we use more data than usual. It’s comforting to know I can continue running our business without any interruptions, even if we use up our metered data.”
Residents and small business owners in the Sky Muster™ satellite footprint can order a plan from participating retail service providers.
Visit www.nbn.com.au/skymuster-plus for more information.
Notes to editors
* Unmetered activity includes static image and text web browsing, select email, and select PC and smartphone operating system updates. Exclusions and fair use conditions apply. If you’re accessing your connection via a Virtual Private Network (VPN), or applications that do not use HTTP/HTTPS (TLS and SSL) protocols, all activities will be metered, even those specified above as ‘unmetered activities’. For more information on which internet activities are unmetered and exclusions visit www.nbn.com.au/skymuster-plus or speak to your internet service provider. For details on fair use conditions, contact your internet service provider.
^ Excludes application, gaming console and non-system software updates. From 7pm – 11pm, PC and smartphone operating system software updates may be shaped at NBN Co’s discretion, to wholesale speeds of 256kbps. Unfair use would include an end user downloading, or knowingly allowing the downloading of, software updates for more than 20 unique devices. For details on fair use conditions, please contact your internet service provider.
# Note that an end user’s experience, including the speeds actually achieved over the nbn™ broadband access network, depends on the nbn™ access network technology and configuration over which services are delivered to their premises, whether they are using the internet during the busy period, and some factors outside of NBN Co’s control (like their equipment quality, software or signal reception). Wholesale speeds may be reduced if metered allowance is exceeded. Satellite end users may also experience latency.
The new Sky Muster™ Plus product will exist alongside NBN Co’s current Sky Muster™ satellite service offerings, both of which will continue to have in place Fair Use Policies to ensure the finite satellite capacity is responsibly shared among users. For details of fair use policies, users should contact their internet service provider.
Sky Muster™ Plus is a Layer 3 service allowing NBN Co the ability to differentiate between applications in order to provide unmetered data for selected applications without compromising the network.
The Connecting Australia report was commissioned by NBN Co in 2017 through independent research agency AlphaBeta. It combines national census data with an Ipsos survey of 3500 individuals across 1700 postcodes in metropolitan, regional and remote areas, including those connected to the nbn™ access network and those not connected. nbn™ connected areas and non-nbn™ connected are inferred based on the percentage rollout of the individual’s residential area. People in areas with >90% rollout at the time of analysis were assumed to be nbn™ users, while those in areas with <10% rollout were regarded non-nbn™ users.