Another twist in NBN road to nowhere

It seems the NBN saga shows no signs of slowing down. Or ever being over for that matter.

Already well behind schedule, and showered in controversy following Telstra's exclusion from the bidding process late last year, the latest twist from the government seems to indicate that it may possibly ask bidders to form a consortium to build the network.

Currently, the bids under consideration are from Optus, Acacia and Axia. Of the three, only Optus currently offers broadband services in Australia. It was previously expected that a single one of these companies would win the right to build the NBN.

Telstra is still putting pressure on the government to play some part in the bid, despite being officially excluded from the process late in 2008.

Since the snub, Telstra has been hammering home a message about its clearly superior broadband services in Australia, with a number of press releases criticising the government, competitors and the entire NBN bidding process.

In many instances, the concerns raised and questions asked are completely valid. Then again, the bitterness on missing out on the NBN is apparent. Not having the country's leading broadband network involved in a national broadband network is a loss.

Today the government received a report on the NBN from an "expert panel".

The government intends to select the winning bid for the NBN before the end of March. But would anyone be surprised if we get to March and the government announces the road just got a little longer?

Question or comment? Email ross_catanzariti at idg.com.au or use the comment box below.

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Ross Catanzariti

Ross Catanzariti

PC World
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