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Toowoomba's copper countdown

30 May 2014

Silver surfers urged to jump on the broadband bandwagon

The three-month countdown is on for the first homes and businesses living within parts of Toowoomba to make the switch from the existing copper network to the National Broadband Network (NBN).

An estimated 1,250 home and business owners have under three months  before the NBN is scheduled to permanently replace most existing landline phone, ADSL internet and Telstra cable internet services when they are officially switched off from 28 August 2014 (locations outlined in below map).*

NBN Co urges home and business owners in the affected areas to contact their preferred phone company and internet service provider to get their order for services over the NBN in as soon as possible.

NBN Co spokesperson, Ryan Williams said:

“The move to the NBN is not automatic and may take some planning and coordination. Residents and businesses in the area need to move their home or business phone and internet services over to the NBN if they wish to continue using them. They have a choice whether to switch across to the NBN or to make do with mobile or other wireless solutions.

“We particularly want to reach out to anyone currently using a medical alarm. We encourage them to contact their preferred phone company or internet provider along with their alarm provider to put in an order for services over the NBN. 

“Residents using a medical alarm should also sign up to the NBN Co Medical Alarm Register so that we can take additional steps to ensure they have a smooth migration to the NBN.”**

Nan Bosler, President of the Australian Seniors Computer Clubs Association also encouraged Toowoomba residents to make the switch.

“It’s particularly important for older Australians living in these areas to still contact their telephone service provider and connect their new landline phone service even if they don’t use the internet. I would also advise seniors to use this as an opportunity to get themselves online and experience the benefits of fast broadband. Using the internet can help to reduce social isolation for older Australians by keeping them in  touch with family and friends, whether they are across the road or across the world,” she said.

The move to the NBN is not automatic – home and business owners need to take the following steps to connect:

1. Contact your preferred internet service provider or phone company: 

a. If you have a medical alarm or alert (or a family member, carer or friend) you are encouraged to register your details with NBN Co’s Medical Alarm Register by calling 1800 227 300 or complete the online form at:

b. If you have an EFTPOS terminal, fax or alarm system, call the provider of that service (for example your bank) to ask what internet or landline phone services over the NBN will support the device.

c. If your building has an emergency lift phone and/or a fire indicator panel you are encouraged to register your details with NBN Co so these services can be identified by calling 1800 687 626.***

d. Contact your preferred phone company or internet service provider and discuss your requirements.

2. Choose: a plan that suits your needs.

3. Order: your service over the NBN as soon as possible.

NBN Co is currently undertaking a comprehensive communication campaign including local advertising, community information sessions and direct mail to residents in area of Toowoomba set to make the switch to the NBN from 28 August 2014. 

From 28 May 2014, NBN Co will begin making service calls within affected areas of Toowoomba to raise community awareness, help older Australians and inform households and businesses on the steps required to connect to the NBN.****

More information about the steps residents and businesses need to take to connect to the NBN as well as a list of service providers can be found at:


Media enquiries:

Frances Kearey

02 9927 4200 


Media materials:

Supporting video, audio and image files can be downloaded from the below link:

Notes to editors:

• As part of the Statement of Expectations released in April 2014, NBN Co is working to ensure all Australians have access to very fast broadband as soon as possible, at affordable prices, and at the least cost to taxpayers. The Statement allows for the NBN to be built in the most cost-effective way using the technology best matched to each area of Australia. 

• Areas within suburbs will have different switch over dates depending on when the NBN becomes available to their premises.

• Home and business owners who are scheduled to have their landline phone, ADSL internet and Telstra cable internet services disconnected have been sent letters from NBN Co with details about how to switch to the NBN.

• Homes and businesses that have an existing medical or security alarm systems should contact their alarm provider and phone company to enquire about their current system and how it will work over the NBN.

• NBN Co has also established a register to help support people who have medical alarm devices migrate successfully across to services over the National Broadband Network (NBN). Individuals using a medical alarm or alert (or a family member, carer or friend) can list a medical alarm on the NBN Co Medical Alarm Register by calling 1800 227 300 or completing the online form at:

* The NBN is replacing most of the traditional landline networks for phone and internet services, including copper and the vast majority of HFC networks.  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 us on 1800 687 626.

**Residents and businesses who have special equipment that operates using a landline connection , such as a monitored security or fire alarm, EFTPOS machine, lift phone or medical monitoring device, should contact the supplier of the device or monitoring service for further advice on what needs to be done for it to work over the NBN. For more information visit     

***Due to specific in-building cabling requirements NBN Co is working closely with industry to develop solutions to migrate emergency lift phones and fire indicator panels. These services should not be connected to the NBN until solutions are available. A register has been set up to identify where these services are located and to support continuity of service for both lift phones and fire indicator panels.

****The NBN Co Ambassadors will be wearing clearly identifiable branded uniforms and carrying photo identification. They will also be requesting information about homes or businesses to help them understand what existing services may require migration before the copper disconnection. Residents and businesses can expect visits during 28 May – 14 June 2014, between the hours of 12pm-7pm weekdays and 9am-5pm on weekends. If no one is available it is planned that clearly marked information will be left under the door or in the mailbox.


Toowoomba’s copper countdown

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