A microchip with lights

Due to a global shortage in core componentry, NBN Co has halted all new connections via the nbn™ HFC network.

Chipsets in short supply
Most types of NBN connections require a Network Termination Device (NTD), sometimes called a network termination unit, Network Connection Device (NCD) or a NBN connection box, which acts as a connection point between the NBN network and your home devices.

Thanks to a global increase in demand and manufacturing delays brought on by COVID-19, factories around the world have been scrambling to keep up, with the specific chipset required for the HFC (NTD) one of the casualties.

Who will this affect?
This will affect customers looking to switch from an ADSL or cable connection over to the NBN in areas where HFC is the primary mode of connection. According to the ACCC’s 2020 NBN Wholesale Market Indicators Report, that’s around 10% of the Australian population.

Until the global equipment shortage is rectified, these customers will be unable to switch over to the NBN. (Hot Tip: Pentanet’s Fixed Wireless service isn’t affected!)

While Perth is primarily connected to the NBN via Fibre to the Node, there are still some pockets that are connected via HFC. These pockets are focused around coastal suburbs, with some northern suburbs including Mullaloo, Craigie, Greenwood, Kingsley & Woodvale. There is also a heavy concentration in the western suburbs, including Applecross, Cottesloe, Subiaco and Wembley.

Number of Internet Services in Operation in Australia

Number of internet services in operation in Australia*

Does this affect customers already connected via HFC?
This will only affect customers who are looking for a new HFC connection, as they require a new NTD. This will not affect those already connected, or with a connection confirmed to be underway.

If a new NTD is required at your premises, this embargo will apply. This may be the case for a new build, subdivision, or if your home has never been connected to the NBN.

When will this shortage end?
According to NBN Co, this shortage is to continue for the “next several months”. We’ve been told there is “an existing supply to lean on for vulnerable customers or as replacements as faults arise.”

Is there an alternative to the NBN? Absolutely - Pentanet Fixed Wireless.
Completely independent from NBN, Pentanet Fixed Wireless has become the go-to alternative for thousands of Perth internet users. Whereby NBN uses ‘cables in the ground’, Pentanet’s ‘fibre through the air’ point-to-point technology flies direct to you, quick as a flash.

To see if Fixed Wireless is available at your home, head to our Fixed Wireless address checker.

For more information, read the full NBN announcement.

*Source: ACCC Measuring Broadband Australia Report, May 2020.