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Communication in Australia through electronic means using devices such as telephone, television, radio or computer, and services such as the telephony and broadband networks have always been important in Australia given the 'tyranny of distance' with a dispersed population. Governments have driven telecommunication development and have a key role in regulation.
Communication is the act of conveying meanings from one entity or group to another through the use of mutually understood signs, symbols, and semiotic rules.
A telephone, or phone, is a telecommunications device that permits two or more users to conduct a conversation when they are too far apart to be heard directly. A telephone converts sound, typically and most efficiently the human voice, into electronic signals that are transmitted via cables and other communication channels to another telephone which reproduces the sound to the receiving user.
Television (TV), sometimes shortened to tele or telly, is a telecommunication medium used for transmitting moving images in monochrome, or in color, and in two or three dimensions and sound. The term can refer to a television set, a television program, or the medium of television transmission. Television is a mass medium for advertising, entertainment and news.
Each of the six Australian colonies had their own telephony communications network prior to Federation of Australia in 1901. The Australian networks were government assets operating under colonial legislation modelled on that of Britain. The UK Telegraph Act 1868 for example empowered the Postmaster-General to 'acquire, maintain and work electric telegraphs' and foreshadowed the 1870 nationalisation of competing British telegraph companies.
The Federation of Australia was the process by which the six separate British self-governing colonies of Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia, and Western Australia agreed to unite and form the Commonwealth of Australia, establishing a system of federalism in Australia. Fiji and New Zealand were originally part of this process, but they decided not to join the federation. Following federation, the six colonies that united to form the Commonwealth of Australia as states kept the systems of government that they had developed as separate colonies, but they also agreed to have a federal government that was responsible for matters concerning the whole nation. When the Constitution of Australia came into force, on 1 January 1901, the colonies collectively became states of the Commonwealth of Australia.
The Telegraph Act 1868 was an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. It paved the way for the British state to take over telegraph companies and/or their operations.
Australia's first telephone service (connecting the Melbourne and South Melbourne offices of Robinson Brothers) was launched in 1879. The private Melbourne Telephone Exchange Company opened Australia's first telephone exchange in August 1880. Around 7,757 calls were handled in 1884.
Melbourne is the capital and most populous city of the Australian state of Victoria, and the second most populous city in Australia and Oceania. Its name refers to an urban agglomeration of 9,992.5 km2 (3,858.1 sq mi), comprising a metropolitan area with 31 municipalities, and is also the common name for its city centre. The city occupies much of the coastline of Port Phillip bay and spreads into the hinterlands towards the Dandenong and Macedon ranges, Mornington Peninsula and Yarra Valley. It has a population of approximately 5 million, and its inhabitants are referred to as "Melburnians".
South Melbourne is an inner suburb of Melbourne, Australia, 2 km south of Melbourne's Central Business District (CBD). It is in the local government area of the City of Port Phillip. At the 2011 Census, South Melbourne had a population of 9,317.
The Melbourne Telephone Exchange Company operated Australia's first telephone exchange. The exchange was located at 367 Collins Street. It commenced operation in August 1880. H.B.Moore was the first manager. W.H. Masters and T.T. Draper were the owners of the company. It later became the Victorian Telephone Exchange Company. Private ownership continued until 1887, when it was bought out by the Victorian Colonial Government. In the first year it had 23 subscribers but by 1887 it had 887 subscribers
The nature of the networks meant that regulation in Australia was undemanding: network personnel were government employees or agents, legislation was enhanced on an incremental basis and restrictions could be achieved through infrastructure. All the colonies ran their telegraph networks at a deficit through investment in infrastructure and subsidisation of regional access, generally with bipartisan support.
Government-operated post office and telegraph networks - the largest parts of the bureaucracy - were combined into a single department in each colony on the model of the UK Post Office: South Australia in 1869, Victoria in 1870, Queensland in 1880 and New South Wales in 1893.
At Federation, the colonial networks (staff, switches, wires, handsets, buildings etc.) were transferred to the Commonwealth Postmaster-General's Department responsible for domestic postal, telephone and, telegraph services becoming the responsibility of the first Postmaster-General (PMG), a federal. With 16,000 staff (and assets of over £6 million) the PMG accounted for 80% of the new federal bureaucracy.
In Australia, the Postmaster-General's Department (PMG) was an Australian Government department, established at Australia's Federation in 1901, whose responsibilities included the provision of postal and telegraphic services throughout Australia. It was abolished in December 1975, and in its place two separate legal entities were established: Telecom and Australia Post.
Public phones were available in a handful of post offices. Subscriber telephones were initially restricted to major businesses, government agencies, institutions and wealthier residences. Eight million telegrams were sent that year over 43,000 miles of line.
A payphone is typically a coin-operated public telephone, often located in a telephone booth or in high-traffic outdoor areas, with pre-payment by inserting money or by billing a credit or debit card, or a telephone card. Prepaid calling cards also facilitate establishing a call by first calling the provided toll-free telephone number, entering the card account number and PIN, then the desired connection telephone number. An equipment usage fee may be charged as additional units, minutes or tariff fee to the collect/third-party, debit, credit, telephone or prepaid calling card when used at payphones. By agreement with the landlord, either the phone company pays rent for the location and keeps the revenue, or the landlord pays rent for the phone and shares the revenue.
There were around 33,000 phones across Australia, with 7,502 telephone subscribers in inner Sydney and 4,800 in the Melbourne central business district.
Sydney is the state capital of New South Wales and the most populous city in Australia and Oceania. Located on Australia's east coast, the metropolis surrounds Port Jackson and extends about 70 km (43.5 mi) on its periphery towards the Blue Mountains to the west, Hawkesbury to the north, the Royal National Park to the south and Macarthur to the south-west. Sydney is made up of 658 suburbs, 40 local government areas and 15 contiguous regions. Residents of the city are known as "Sydneysiders". As of June 2017, Sydney's estimated metropolitan population was 5,230,330 and is home to approximately 65% of the state's population.
Overseas cable links to Australia remained in private hands, reflecting the realities of imperial politics, demands on the new government's resources, and perceptions of its responsibilities.
A trunk line between Melbourne (headquarters of the PMG Department) and Sydney was established in 1907, with extension to Adelaide in 1914, Brisbane in 1923, Perth in 1930 and Hobart in 1935.
On 12 July 1906 the first Australian wireless overseas messages were sent between Point Lonsdale, Victoria and Devonport, Tasmania.Australia and New Zealand ratified the 1906 Berlin Radio-telegraph Convention in 1907. The PMG department became responsible for some international shortwave services - particularly from the 1920s - and for a new Coastal Radio Service in 1911, with the first of a network of stations operational in February 1912.
The Sydney–Melbourne co-axial cable was officially opened on 9 April 1962.The coaxial cable infrastructure supported the introduction of subscriber trunk dialling between the cities and live television link-ups. After its commissioning in April 1962 the cable carried telegraph and telephone traffic. It also provided the first inter-city television transmission in Australia, allowing simultaneous television broadcasting in Melbourne and Sydney for the first time.
Optus was formed as AUSSAT a government owned on 1981. It was later privatized under the Bob hawke 1980s government. Telstra another government owned asset was also privatized on 1997 under the John Howard liberal government.
Australia developed its own radio broadcasting system, through its own engineers, manufacturers, retailers, newspapers, entertainment services, and news agencies. Initially hobbyists and amateurs were dominant, however with the Commonwealth Government setting up the first radio system, and business interests becoming increasingly involved, hobbyists and amateurs were marginalised. The Australian Labor Party was especially interested in radio because it allowed them to bypass the newspapers, which were mostly controlled by their opposition. Both parties agreed on the need for a national system, and in 1932 set up the Australian Broadcasting Commission was set up as a government agency largely separate from political interference.
The first commercial broadcasters, originally known as 'B' class stations were on the air as early as 1925. Many were sponsored by newspapers in Australia,by theatrical interests, by amateur radio enthusiasts and radio retailers, and by retailers generally. Almost all Australians were within reach of a station by the 1930s, and the number of stations remained relatively stable through the post-war era. However, in the 1970s, the Labor government under Prime Minister Gough Whitlam commenced a broadcasting renaissance so that by the 1990s there were 50 different radio services available for groups based on tastes, languages, religion, or geography. The broadcasting system was largely deregulated in 1992, except that there were limits on foreign ownership and on monopolistic control. By 2000, 99 percent of Australians owned at least one television set, and averaged 20 hours a week watching it.
As early as 1929, two Melbourne commercial radio stations, 3UZ and 3DB were conducting experimental mechanical television broadcasts – these were conducted in the early hours of the morning, after the radio stations had officially closed down. In 1934 Dr Val McDowallat amateur station 4CM Brisbane conducted experiments in electronic television.
Television broadcasting officially began in Sydney and Melbourne just prior to the Melbourne Olympic Games in November/December 1956 and then phased in at other capital cities, and then into rural markets. Many forms of entertainment, particularly drama and variety, proved more suited to television than radio, so the actors and producers migrated there.
It now includes a broad range of public, commercial, community, subscription, narrowcast, and amateur stations across the country. Colour television in the PAL 625-line format went to a full-time basis in 1975. Subscription television, on the Galaxy platform, began in 1995. Digital terrestrial television was introduced in 2001.
Australia moved from PAL 625 to DVB-T on 10 December 2013.
Subscription television, whether Foxtel or Netflix type services, has become more important and is one factor driving demand for the National Broadband Network.
Prior to the government opening telecommunications to multi player competition the PMG (and later Telecom Australia) operated a vertically integrated system, providing the Core network, backhaul, ancillary networks and a range of services to end users.
With opening telecommunications to multi provider competition the government required Telstra to sell wholesale access to its core facilities and networks.
In the 2000s, larger ISPs began taking over more of the delivery infrastructure themselves by taking advantage of regulated access to the unconditioned local loop. As well as significantly reducing costs, it gave the service providers complete control of their own service networks, other than the copper pair (phone line from the exchange to the customer).
Telstra in 2006 proposed replacing its copper network with an optical fibre node network with the drop connection into end user premises being the existing copper cable. They abandoned this as under competition policy they would be required to open their network to competing carriers on a wholesale basis.
Further options were explored with the first Rudd government deciding to set up a National Broadband Network using Fibre To The Premises as the main carrier network, supported by satellite and wireless to remote areas.
After the election of the Abbott government in 2013 a Multi Technological Mix was implemented, replacing FTTP where development was yet to start with Fibre To The Node and also repurposing the Telstra and Optus hybrid fibre-coaxial networks.
In the late 1990s, Telstra and Optus rolled-out separate cable Internet services, focusing on the east coast.
The Overseas Telecommunications Commission (OTC) was established by Australia in August 1946 with responsibility for all international telecommunications services into, through and out of Australia.
In 1981 Aussat Pty Ltd was established as a GBE to operate domestic satellite telecommunication and broadcasting services. Aussat's charter restricted it from acting as a competitor to Telecom, including a prohibition on interconnecting public switched traffic with Telecom's network.
Proposals for a merger of Aussat and OTC (thereby permitting national delivery of telecommunication services in competition with Telecom) were rejected in favor of disposal of the satellite operator to a non-government entity that would be allowed to compete with Telecom.
Satellites are used to provide telecommunications services in very remote areas. These are primarily the Optus satellites C1 D1 and D2.
There are also a number of satellite earth stations, which provide access points into the Australian networks:
Due to Australia's large size, sparse population, and relative remoteness to other countries, a significant amount of infrastructure is required for Internet communications. The vast majority of Australia's international telecommunications transit capacity is sourced from undersea several fibre-optic cables to Asia and the US:
The Postmaster-General's Department regulated telecommunications and operated telephone and related communications within Australia over the copper telephony network from federation up to 22 December 1975,replaced by the Postal and Telecommunications Department.
In mid-1975 the department was disaggregated by the Fraser Government into the two Government Business Enterprises: the Australian Telecommunications Commission (trading as Telecom Australia) and the Australian Postal Commission (trading as Australia Post) with a new Postal and Telecommunications Department.The change was intended to take account of the increase in the functions of the department to include all electronic media matters which had previously been the responsibility of the Department of the Media.
The 1982 Davidson Inquiry regarding private sector involvement in delivery of existing/proposed telecommunications services recommended ending Telecom Australia's monopoly.
In June 1991, legislation was passed allowing duopoly competition with Telstra, Optus Communications became Australia's second general telecommunications carrier.It was guaranteed access to Telecom's existing infrastructure on reasonable terms - meant to ensure its viability. Other players were prevented from entering the general telephone market until 1997.
Telecom Australia changed its name to Telstra in 1995 and has since been privatised. It faced growing competition in market niches such as long distance corporate voice and data services. Telstra was progressively privatised (33.3% 1997, 16.6% 1999, 33.3% 2006, with 17% transferred to the Future Fund.)
Numbers of licensed telecommunications carriers grew from: ~20 controlling facilities in Australia at 1998 (with several hundred entities providing services using those facilities to end users); to 99 at 2002.
The Postmaster-General's Department regulated telecommunications and operated telephone and related communications within Australia over the copper telephony network from federation up to 22 December 1975,replaced by the Postal and Telecommunications Department.
On 1 July 2005, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) brought together the Australian Broadcasting Authority (ABA) and the Australian Communications Authority (ACA).
On 31 December 2007, Stephen Conroy announced the federal government's intention to censor 'inappropriate material' from the Internet.Under the proposed system any Australian who subscribes to an ISP would receive a 'clean' version of the Internet. The Federal Government's stated aim is to protect children from accessing violent and pornographic websites. This plan was later abandoned and the Australian government continues to only block websites that violate online laws.
Permanent Internet access was first available in Australia to universities via AARNet in 1989.The first commercial dial-up Internet Service Provider (ISP) appeared in capital cities soon after, and by the mid-1990s almost the entire country had a range of choices of dial-up ISPs. Today, Internet access is available through a range of technologies, i.e. hybrid fibre coaxial cable, Digital Subscriber Line (DSL), Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) and satellite Internet. The Australian Government, in partnership with the industrial sector, began rolling out a nationwide FTTP broadband network in July 2009.
The .au domain (ccTLD) was delegated to Robert Elz of the Australian Computing Science Network (ACSNet) in March 1986.From then, universities connected one at a time to allow for the sending and receiving of email and for use newsgroup facilities. An earlier restricted IP-based network, linking academic institutions within Australia, known as ACSNet, used the .oz domain. This domain was subsumed under .au to become .oz.au.
A permanent connection between AARNet and ARPANet was established in May 1989 by a satellite connection.
In 1992 there were two competing commercial ISPs expanding to excess of 100 by June 1995 [Internet Australasia Magazine], attributing some fifth of all AARNet traffic.
The Vice Chancellors' Committee sold all commercial customers with Telstra leading the commercial push of the Internet into Australia.
Broadband internet access is available in Australia using predominantly ADSL, plus cable, fibre, satellite and wireless technologies. Since July 2008 almost two thirds of Australian households have had internet access, with broadband connections outnumbering dial-up two to one.According to the recent ABS statistics the non-dial-up services outnumber dial up services 3.6 to 1.
In 2000, the first consumer ADSL services were made available via Telstra Bigpond, at speeds of 256/64 kbit/s (downstream/upstream), 512/128 kbit/s, and 1500/256 kbit/s. Telstra chose to artificially limit all ADSL speeds to a maximum of 1500/256 kbit/s. As ADSL required access to the telephone exchange and the copper line — which only Telstra had — this allowed Telstra to be dominant due to the expense of roll-out for other companies and Telstra's established customer base. Other ISPs followed suit soon after; reselling connections purchased wholesale from Telstra.
In response to Telstra's monopolisation of ADSL provision other carriers installed their own DSLAMs.Internode
The presence of non-Telstra DSLAMs allowed the service providers to control the speed of connection, and most offered 'uncapped' speeds, allowing the customers to connect at whatever speed their copper pair would allow, up to 8 Mbit/s. Ratification of ADSL2 and ADSL2+ increased the maximum to 12 Mbit/s, then 24 Mbit/s. [ citation needed ]
In November 2007 the first Naked DSL product was announced by iiNet.Shortly after this other internet providers also started to provide DSL products without telephony service over copper, reducing line rental fees.
Telstra proposed to upgrade to Fibre to the Node (FTTN) in 2006 but did not pursue the development because it would be required to share the network.
Wireless broadband in Australia is widespread, with many point-to-point fixed wireless broadband providers serving broadband-poor regional and rural areas, predominantly with Motorola Canopy and WiMAX technologies. Telstra's 2006 introduction of the 'Next G' HSPA network (which reportedly covers 99% of the Australian population as of September 2008) with speeds advertised of being up to 14 Mbit/sstimulated investment in wireless broadband by competitors Optus, Vodafone and Hutchison Telecommunications, who are presently expanding their HSPA networks to cover 96–98% of the Australian population.
Delivering competitive telecommunications services to regional and rural areas is a major issue, with Telstra having a Universal Service Obligation regarding telephony services. Government monies have been made available on a competitive basis to carriers to address broadband and mobile telephone blackspots and gaps in service provision.
The National Broadband Network was initially a fibre to the home (FTTH) open-access network in planning and trial operation in Australia by the federal government. The national broadband network aimed to provide up to 1000 Mbit/s speeds and to connect to 93% of Australian households and businesses.This has since been revised under a Coalition government to a Mixed-Technology system relying largely on Australia's existing and largely depreciated copper networks. This revision aims for 50 Mbit/s to 100 Mbit/s, with consumer reports ranging from 1 Mbit/s to 100 Mbit/s. The government will hold a majority share (51%) in the network company, with the remainder being held by private firms. The Australian government had previously called for proposals to build a Fibre to the Node (FTTN) broadband network providing download speeds up to 100 and upload speeds up to 40Megabits per second. The government also utilises fixed wireless technology and satellite technology to provide fast broadband connection in rural area and very remote area. Fixed wireless provides speeds up to 50/20 Mbit/s. Satellite technology uses two Sky Muster communication satellites launched in 2015 and 2016 to provide fast broadband in very remote areas and offshore. It provides speeds up to 25/5 Mbit/s.
The network will be the largest single infrastructure investment in Australia's history.
Communications in Hong Kong includes a wide-ranging and sophisticated network of radio, television, telephone, Internet, and related online services, reflecting Hong Kong's thriving commerce and international importance.
This article concerns the systems of communication in Lebanon. Lebanon possesses a number of systems of telecommunicationm. The country code and top-level domain for Lebanon is ".lb".
The telecommunication infrastructure of Singapore spans the entire city-state. Its development level is high, with close accessibility to the infrastructure from nearly all inhabited parts of the island and for all of the population, with exceptions. Today, the country is considered an international telecommunications hub, an achievement that was driven by Singapore's view that high-quality telecommunications is one of the critical factors that support its economic growth.
Telstra Corporation Limited is Australia's largest telecommunications company which builds and operates telecommunications networks and markets voice, mobile, internet access, pay television and other products and services.
This article concerns the systems of telecommunications in Portugal. Portugal has a modern and flexible telecommunications market and a wide range of varied media organisations. The regulatory body overseeing communications is called ANACOM.
Singtel Optus Pty Limited d/b/a Optus is the second largest telecommunications company in Australia. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of Singtel since 2001. The company primarily trades under the Optus brand, while maintaining several wholly owned subsidiary brands, such as Virgin Mobile Australia in the mobile telephony market, Uecomm in the network services market and Alphawest in the ICT services sector.
AARNet provides Internet services to the Australian education and research communities and their research partners.
Internode Pty Ltd is an Australian Internet service provider (ISP) that provides ADSL and NBN broadband Internet access, business-class access, web hosting, co-location, Voice over IP, and a variety of related services.
Telstra Media is an Australian Internet service provider and a product of Telstra. It is Australia's largest ISP and is based in Melbourne. The BigPond brand has been in the process of being phased out in favour of full Telstra branding since 2013. As of May 2016, BigPond Movies is the only remaining service using BigPond branding.
ITU G.992.5 is an International Telecommunication Union standard for asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL) broadband Internet access. The standard has a maximum theoretical download speed of 24 Mbit/s. Utilizing G.992.5 Annex M upload speeds of 3.3 Mbit/s can be achieved.
TransACT is the trading name of TransACT Capital Communications, an Australian telecommunications company based in Canberra which provides broadband internet access, fixed telephony, cable television services, and mobile phone services in Canberra and a subset of these services in Queanbeyan, throughout South-east New South Wales and in Victoria.
TelstraClear Limited was New Zealand's third-largest telecommunications company before being acquired by Vodafone New Zealand in October 2012.
In telecommunications, cable Internet access, shortened to cable Internet, is a form of broadband Internet access which uses the same infrastructure as a cable television. Like digital subscriber line and fiber to the premises services, cable Internet access provides network edge connectivity from the Internet service provider to an end user. It is integrated into the cable television infrastructure analogously to DSL which uses the existing telephone network. Cable TV networks and telecommunications networks are the two predominant forms of residential Internet access. Recently, both have seen increased competition from fiber deployments, wireless, and mobile networks.
Permanent Internet access was first available in Australia to universities via AARNet in 1989. Pegasus Networks pioneered public use in June 1989. The first commercial dial-up Internet Service Provider (ISP) appeared in capital cities soon after, and by the mid-1990s almost the entire country had a range of choices of dial-up ISPs. Today, Internet access is available through a range of technologies, i.e. hybrid fibre coaxial cable, Digital Subscriber Line (DSL), Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) and satellite Internet. The Australian Government, in partnership with the industrial sector, began rolling out a nationwide Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) and improved fixed wireless and satellite access through the National Broadband Network in July 2009. Subsequently, the roll out was down graded to a Multi-Technology Mix on the promise of it being less expensive with earlier completion.
Internet access is widely available in New Zealand. Like Australia, it first became accessible to university students in the country in 1989. As of October 2015, there are 1,926,000 broadband connections and 53,000 dialup connections in New Zealand, of which 1,661,000 are residential and 316,000 are business or government.
In Singapore, there are 11,512,900 broadband Internet subscribers. There are three major Internet service providers in Singapore, namely, Singtel, StarHub, and M1 and other growing providers like Pacific Internet, MyRepublic, Colt and ViewQwest. Over the years, the Singapore Government has been promoting the usage of broadband Internet access, as part of its Intelligent Nation 2015 (iN2015) initiative.
The United Kingdom has been involved with the Internet since it was created. The telecommunications infrastructure provides Internet access to businesses and home users in various forms, including cable, DSL, and wireless. The Internet country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for the United Kingdom is .uk and is sponsored by Nominet.
iPrimus is an Australian telecommunications company and wholly owned subsidiary of Vocus Communications.
The National Broadband Network (NBN) is an Australian national wholesale open-access data network project. It includes wired and radio communication components rolled out and operated by NBN Co Limited. Retail service providers (RSPs), typically Internet service providers, contract with NBN to access the network and sell fixed internet access to end users.
Chorus is a provider of telecommunications infrastructure throughout New Zealand. It is listed on the NZX stock exchange and is in the NZX 50 Index. It is the owner of the majority of telephone lines and exchange equipment in New Zealand. It is also responsible for building approximately 70% of the new fibre optic Ultra-Fast Broadband network. It has received a government subsidy of $929 million to build the new fibre network.