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The national broadband network (NBN) seems to be an ever-present in the media spotlight thanks to its penchant for riling public debate. The development of the NBN has caught the national interest as it drags us kicking and screaming into a future unknown.

The cost of this future is not small either. In fact, according to sources, the bill for implementing the NBN could easily topple $40 billion. And that’s considered a reserved estimate by many.

Part of the justification for such heavy investment in the NBN is the benefits it will have on our businesses. The predicted increase in efficiency and productivity will offset some of the huge expenditure and help drive the Australian economy. So what will some of these benefits be exactly?

Let’s take a closer look at some of the expected highlights we’ll see as the NBN roll-out gathers pace:

Faster internet speeds: The NBN will be able to produce internet speeds of up to 1Gb/s. To put that into context, that’s around 50 times faster than is achievable on a current ADSL2+ connection.

This increase in speed and the quality of service assurances will make it much easier for businesses to migrate into the cloud and enjoy the benefits of a hosted system. Online communication will become more efficient as managing email, video-conferencing, VoIP applications and online files will reap the rewards of the faster speeds.
Advantages for retailers: The NBN will provide retailers with a fantastic opportunity to grow their business through increasing their online presence by tapping into the fast-growing online shopping trend.

Retailers will also have the opportunity to explore new and interactive ways to attract customers online thanks to the increased bandwidth generated by the NBN.
Rural revolution: Perhaps the group set to benefit most are rural businesses. They will enjoy cheaper pricing, improved access and a profound improvement in service speeds.

On the international stage: Australian business will be strengthened in a global context as we bring our broadband network up to date with the rest of the developed world.

International communication will be made easier and cheaper, international file sharing will become more efficient and Australian websites will become more accessible for overseas customers.

While the details of the roll-out are still being finalised, and despite one or two pending questions over how it will be installed, Australian businesses have every reason to be optimistic about the arrival of the NBN.

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