HORSHAM’S National Broadband Network connection is switched on.
About 3000 homes and businesses in the city’s central and western areas are now able to access fast broadband via fibre to the node technology after the network was activated on Friday.
NBNCo’s Victorian spokeswoman Kasey Ellison said construction of the NBN fixed line network was nearly complete in Horsham.
The city’s remaining 4800 homes and businesses will be able to make the switch to the network by the end of next month.
The northern parts of the city will switch this month, while the remaining southern areas will be switched on in October.
About 3000 premises on the outskirts of the city have been able to access the network’s fixed wireless technology since 2014.
People in other areas have been able to connect to Sky Muster satellite services since last year.
Ms Ellison said people in Horsham could now connect to network services through their phone or internet provider.
“The community will join more than 5.8 million other premises across Australia that are able to enjoy the benefits of the NBN network,” she said.
“Access to fast broadband is designed to provide a range of benefits such as improved opportunities to work from home, better access to online education tools and more options for on-demand entertainment.
“Businesses will be able to improve their productivity through cloud-based sharing with staff and customers, as well as have increased opportunities to access new markets through e-commerce.”
Ms Ellison said the change meant people had a choice of internet speeds for the first time.
“When selecting a plan from a retail service provider, people should keep in mind that a 25Mbps download speed is considered where ‘fast’ broadband starts,” she said.
“Retail plans based on NBN’s wholesale 12/1 speed tier are not considered superfast and might be similar to what many people currently experience on ADSL2.”
Telstra area general manager Steve Tinker said the ability for Horsham people to connect to superfast broadband was exciting.
“It helps to keep locals at the forefront of technology in Australia,” he said.
Mr Tinker said he expected the network’s Horsham activation would lead to more people using connected devices to help turn their households into smart homes.