How we’re building the fibre network of the future

As we edge further into a digital century, it’s clear that data is king. How much data you have; how fast it moves, and how much you can send are the currency of the digital realm.
Brendon Riley · 02 February 2022 · 3 minute read

There’s more demand than ever for fast and capable networks to shuttle around huge amounts of data as the world digitises at an astronomical pace.

Our hyper-connected age now needs a hyper-connected network so Aussies can stay on the cutting edge of the global digital economy. That’s why we’re spending up big on a new state-of-the-art fibre network.

We’ll be building all new inter-city dual fibre paths to make sure Australia has the network it deserves.

Here’s what it all means.

Bolstering our fibre network

Over the next five years we will be bolstering our national fibre network, adding 20,000 new route kilometres. The ambition is to improve the size, reach and bandwidth of our already extensive optical fibre network.

The new fibre paths will boost capacity, speed and meet the needs of a burgeoning digital nation, and this project will deliver tomorrow’s connectivity today.

The new fibre technology will enable ultrafast connectivity between capital cities as well as into regional and remote communities. This will support remote working and education needs, health services, high-definition entertainment consumption and online gaming and IoT use cases such as mining and agriculture.

The new fibre technology we’re deploying will build upon the existing fibre network we have today, as well as our substantial sub-sea routes, with which we can provide end to end solutions on a global scale.

The new inter city, dual path ultra-high capacity, low-latency fibre will enable whopping transmission rates of 650Gbps (over six times today’s common rate of 100Gbps). It will enable express connectivity between capital cities up to 55Tbps per fibre pair capacity (over six times today’s typical capacity of 8.8Tbps per fibre pair) on routes such as Sydney – Melbourne; Sydney-Brisbane; and Perth-Sydney.

Translation: it’s fast. Really fast. Fast enough to drive Australia into the next three decades of connectivity and into a top spot on the world stage.

We’re working with our industry-leading optical fibre and cable providers, Corning Incorporated and Prysmian to get this project done. Prysmian’s cable has been developed to Australia’s unique environmental conditions and will be completely designed and manufactured locally on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. Corning’s SMF-28® ULL fibre with advanced bend enables a compact cable design while providing greater transmission capacity and lower latency over this new long-haul network.

We’ll be kicking off this project in late FY22, and together with our Viasat project, we will invest an additional ~$350 million of capex per year outside of our BAU capex envelope over the next three years to get both projects done.

It forms part of our ambitious T25 transformation goal for InfraCo, to deliver profitable growth and value by improving access, utilisation and scale of our infrastructure.

This is a massive milestone for us at InfraCo and for Telstra as we continue to operate and improve the networks of the future.


By Brendon Riley

CEO of Telstra InfraCo

Brendon Riley became the CEO of Telstra InfraCo on 1 October 2018. In this role Brendon is responsible for efficiently leveraging Telstra’s significant portfolio of assets, ensuring it maintains and monetises these assets and meets its obligations to wholesale customers. Brendon also continues to be responsible for the Telstra Health business. Prior to becoming the CEO of Telstra InfraCo, Brendon was Telstra’s Chief Operating Officer and the Group Executive for Telstra Enterprise.

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