Super-fast NBN internet has been switched on in Glen Innes

NBN co workers installing modern super-fast technology last year.
NBN co workers installing modern super-fast technology last year.

Glen Innes today became the last town in the New England region to get access to the NBN.

The completion of the NBN was initially scheduled for Septemberbut was delayed to the end of January, with NBN co blaming "complexity of the works, in particular issues with the aerial build required in the area" for the delay.

Mayor Carol Sparks said she welcomed improved internet speeds that will come as residents switch over to the National Broadband Network.

"We will at last be able to access quickly all those important areas that we need to run our businesses, to run our schools, to run our hospitals and all the other important businesses we have in town," she said.

"Its extremely important for our town and for all rural towns to have fast internet service."

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Residents of both Glen Innes and Werris Creek can sign up from today. Fibre to the node technology switched on this morning.

Armidale was the first mainland city to get the NBN, when in In 2013 their fibre to the premises technology was switched on. Tenterfield was hooked up by September 2018, with Moree linked up in May.

Fibre to the node technology is slower, because it often still relies on copper cables to the house. It was supposed to be cheaper and quicker to install.

But Mayor Sparks said Glen Innes feels a little left behind.

"We eagerly await the day the regions get the modern quality of services of the city at the same time as the city."

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Business in Glen President Peter Teschner, ironically, has had access to rural satellite internet for about three years.

"From a business perspective I would think that for those businesses that are computer savvy and know how to use and the benefits of the NBN it will be a great asset for sure," he said.

"I think the coming of 5G will even be an even greater asset - how far away that is obviously we don't know."

He said Business in Glen could consider studying the use of the NBN by local businesses in the future.

Local MP Barnaby Joyce said the switch on was a milestone.

Local MP Barnaby Joyce said the switch on was a milestone.

Local MP Barnaby Joyce described the switch on was a milestone, with 96 per cent of his electorate of New England now having access to modern internet.

"Over the coming months, an additional 3,400 premises in Glen Innes and Werris Creek will be able to access the fixed line network, which will not only help people stay better connected to friends and family near and far, but also promote better business outcomes," he said.

"There are a range of NBN plans available through retail service providers. When the NBN becomes available at your home or business, I encourage you to consider the number of internet connected devices people in your home typically use at the same time, then speak to a provider to find a plan that best suits your needs."

He said more local residents and businesses will be able to take advantage of the benefits of fast broadband such as working from home and access to online education and entertainment services.

An NBN spokesperson last year said residents will have an 18 month grace period to switch to a new plan. By March 2021 existing landline phone and internet services will be switched off. The switch over is not automatic - you need to contact your retailer to keep your phone service working.