Friday, August 20, 2010

Australia - ALP leader declines to give a figure for the homes to be reached by the NBN

[smh] Prime Minister Julia Gillard has twice failed to put a number on how many homes will be connected to the national broadband network during the next three years.

Ms Gillard was campaigning in Townsville, north Queensland, on Tuesday, where she marked the start of the $43 billion network's construction on mainland Australia.

Construction in Townsville will take about 12 weeks and the city will be one of five sites around Australia to get first access to the network.

Ms Gillard boasted the superfast network would be capable of speeds 1000 times faster than many people experience today.

But she twice referred reporters to the NBN Co website when asked how many homes would be connected to the network in the next three years.

"My simple point is, I mean, look today, it's happening today," she said.

The prime minister also could not say how much it would cost the average family to hook up to the network.

"It depends what you want," Ms Gillard said, adding the beauty of network was that it "super fast".

Different service providers, spruiking their products, would compete on price.

"Obviously you will pick what you want in your home based on those price comparisons," Ms Gillard said.

Gillard defers NBN questions

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