What is the difference between the copper and NBN fibre networks?

Today, most Australians connect to fixed-line home phone and ADSL service through a copper wire network. That's changing with the NBN.

NBN fibre is a fixed-line internet that is capable of supporting high bandwidth for multiple users. It’s made from glass and uses light to transmit data over long distances. Pretty cool stuff!

NBN fibre reaches you via fibre-optic cable laid either in the ground or coming to your home via overhead lines. This is known as Fibre to the Premise (FttP) or "fibre to the home". Another type of NBN fibre your home might be connected to is Fibre to the Node (FttN). NBN Co is trialing it and it could connect lots of homes as part of the future rollout. If your home is connected via FttN, copper wires from your home will connect up to the new fibre cable network in your street.

Why are we upgrading the copper network?

Remember when we moved from analogue to digital TV? Well think of NBN as an upgrade to the old phone and broadband networks (some of those have been around for over 50 years, so it’s about time for an upgrade). The new fibre-optic cables are better suited to the Australian environment, as data speeds aren’t affected by rain and extreme heat the way some other networks are. That means you’ll get reliable, fast and future-proof broadband.

How NBN fibre will connect to your home or business

NBN comes in different forms depending on where you live – it’s called the ‘multi-technology mix’. It includes FTTP and FTTN. Some homes and businesses are already connected to the NBN using FTTP technology that reaches you via fibre-optic cable laid either in the ground or coming to your home via overhead lines.

Many Australians will be connected to the NBN using FTTN technology. In this instance, the main network will be composed of new fibre optic cables, and will connect to a premises’ existing copper wiring from a node. A node is a box that usually sits at the end of the street and contains network equipment. The combination of fibre and copper will generally offer much faster and more reliable internet and fixed-line phone connections than the current copper network.

What can NBN fibre do for me?

There are lots of reasons why you’ll love an NBN fibre connection. The most obvious benefits are faster internet speeds. With Optus NBN you can select just how fast you want your internet to go. If you’re a gamer, or a TV addict who streams the latest shows, you’ll probably want a very fast connection. If you only want basic web browsing and to check emails, having a standard connection will probably suit you just fine. Pick what’s right for you by checking out our range of Optus NBN speed packs to add to your NBN plan.

When can I connect to NBN fibre?

First things first: check what’s available at your address right now. If the NBN rollout has not yet started in your area, you can pre-register with Optus to receive notification when the rollout will begin for you.

Once the rollout has started in your area, you’ll have 18 months to switch to the new network before your old copper connection is switched off. NBN Co technicians will be working hard to connect everyone in your area so get in quick to avoid connection wait times, or risk being without home phone and internet while you’re waiting to be connected.

Optus makes connecting to the NBN super simple!

Getting connected to Optus NBN is as easy as 1,2,3! First off, order the plan that best suits your needs. Once that’s sorted we’ll send you out everything you need to get connected. Step 3 is simple: enjoy your superfast broadband!

Some people may need a technician to help install their Optus modem. If so, we can send a professional out to get you connected! Professional installation assistance, on site, at your place, costs just $140.

Ready to get started? Find out when your home or business will be connected right now.