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Telcos - responsible for fulfilling Australia’s innovation vision

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Telecommunication network upgrades like the nbnTM and 5G are of paramount importance to our country realising its digital innovation and economic ambitions.


While these types of investments might not be as appealing as the rolling out the latest AI, IoT, or blockchain platform, the reality is that these projects are not possible without a solid and robust network infrastructure.


Modern and future technologies need networks that are able to manage huge volumes of data quickly and reliably. And with organisations increasingly looking to build and deploy these types of projects, most telecommunication networks require upgrading to handle the current and future demands being placed on them.


Essentially, it’s about telcos enabling the rapid and reliable delivery of richer and more engaging experiences – at both B2B and B2C levels.


This topic – business demand for larger network capacity and improved connectivity – was discussed extensively at International Telecoms Week in Chicago recently. I once again had the privilege of attending the wholesale industry’s flagship event on behalf of Optus, joining 7,000 delegates from almost 2,000 companies.


In my conversations with customers and partners I found myself getting excited about the prospects of Australia in this evolving landscape.


This is because financial investment in boosting network capabilities and capacity is hyperactive in Australia and the South East Asia region – with a number of exciting projects underway.


The most prominent is of course the nbnTM, which once the rollout is complete will give all Australians access to super-fast broadband at affordable rates.


Australia is also focussed on enhancing its connections to the rest of the world through improved subsea cable links that accelerate the delivery of services into and out of Australia.


The importance of these projects is best summed up by Southern Cross Cable Network President and CEO Anthony Briscoe:


For the overwhelming majority of internet delivery, our connections are made to various websites and apps … by a series of ‘pipes’ that rest on seabeds across the globe. People don’t realise that delivering a submarine cable is among the most critical infrastructure projects on the planet."


In the immediate future Optus is involved in two exciting subsea cable deployments – due for completion in 2019 – that will deliver bandwidth capable of satisfying demands for data-rich services and applications on our shores.


INDIGO is a major high-capacity cable connecting Singapore to Sydney via Perth, which will benefit the west and east coast of Australia. Once live, businesses across the country will have unparalleled access to one of the world’s largest economic hubs, while the capabilities it enables will create new jobs and opportunities in Western Australia’s flourishing business community.


Southern Cross NEXT will deliver the highest capacity and lowest latency (between Sydney to LA) internet connection accessing US-based web services and apps (connecting Sydney, Auckland and Los Angeles). It is expected to provide an additional 60 terabits per second of capacity for customers, which is the equivalent of roughly 1,875 HD movies per second.


This relentless focus in building network infrastructure and investing in increasing capacity will positively impact most Australians. Opportunities for telcos, business, customers and society are significant:


  • Australian businesses will develop and deploy new digital services based on technologies like artificial intelligence, blockchain and the Internet of Things
  • Telcos will create new and innovative products shaped by these new technologies
  • Greater connectivity to South East Asia, the South Pacific and the US presents a significant growth opportunity for businesses looking to expand their reach
  • The improving routes into Australia provide Australians with greater access to a range of services and content from overseas players
  • More innovations will be developed here in Australia, building new industries, creating more jobs and retaining the best talent


These promise to be exciting times for our industry as we are building for the future, not just for the next 5 years. We are shaping the next generation of networks that will deliver the interactive and engaging experiences that Australians want.


To find out more about Optus network investments and how they will help your business be more successful, click here or contact your account manager today.