South Brisbane Fibre

Just a quick rant because I've been trying since October to get myself set up with fibre Internet in South Brisbane.

A little background for those of us who don't know: South Brisbane fibre is wholly owned by Telstra, and isn't part of the NBN. The plans are different, a lot of ISPs don't seem to bother competing here and everything has to go through Telstra's wholesale division.

The unit I moved into has never had a landline connected so I got hit with a ~$300 connection fee straight up. Initially Telstra thought there was a connection at this address and disconnected my landlady next door, taking out her phone and Internet for the better part of a week which was a massive pain. After that it took about a month for them to get around to installing the network stuff in my unit and another month for me to convince them it wasn't working and come out to actually plug the fibre in at the comms room.

It literally took four hours for the poor tech to unravel the network here and get it connected. In the process I think he unplugged the line into another unit where the tenants were trying to get their own Internet connected, so they'll probably be hit with the $300 connection fee as well.

The tech was a funny guy. Reasonable enough, although he asked me to fix his computer while he was working which was a bit awkward. When he finally got the line connected he confirmed with me that it was 30 mbit, at which point I mentioned I was trying to get 100 mbit and that something must be wrong. Before telling me that 30 mbit should be more than enough for my needs he mentioned that Telstra Wholesale only goes up to 30/1 mbit and that I'd have to sign up for a Telstra plan if I wanted to go higher.

I was pretty mad at this point, but hey, I had Internet for the moment.

Since then I've spent another month chasing iiNet trying to get the bottom of the 100 mbit situation. iiNet themselves have never heard of the 30 mbit limit, they've verified on their end that I should be getting 100 mbit, and have been super reluctant to chase it up for me. I've complained by phone, email, Twitter, all the while being told that someone would chase it up for me and give me a call back, or email me, or follow it up internally somehow.

I just called up now and they have no record of any of the email or phone correspondence I've had, the guy has reiterated that “it should be fine, have you tried power cycling your modem?” and asked me to plug my PC directly into the wall. (I've already done this when I initially reported the problem, I even had to borrow a laptop with Ethernet from a friend to do so.)

Meanwhile my practical speeds with two separate modems are fluctuating between the full 30 mbit and 0.5 mbit/second depending on the stars. I actually had a 700 millisecond ping to Speedtest.net this morning.

To Be Continued…