NBN Co will boost the number of broadband connections for Australians who cannot access an existing commercial broadband service through a new initiative, NBN Co Satellite Support (NSS) Scheme. The scheme can be applied for now. It will connect to up to 9000 additional premises in remote and regional mainland Australia and Tasmania, until the expected launch of NBN Co's Long Term Satellite Service (LTSS)[i] in late 2015. The scheme will be delivered by wholesaler, IP Star[ii] and participating Internet Service Providers[iii] (ISPs), not by NBN Co.

NBN Co Chief Customer Officer, John Simon said, "Bringing broadband to the most remote communities across Australia is one of NBN Co's highest priorities. It gives residents access to e-health, distance education and internet banking, while businesses can benefit from increased productivity, reduced costs and access to new markets.

"With high demand for broadband in regional areas, this initiative is essential to providing a reliable service to families and businesses that cannot access a commercial broadband service today," he said.

Federal President of the Isolated Children's Parents' Association, Judy Newton, said, "This is great news from NBN Co. These are common sense measures that will mean a great deal for families in the bush especially for students and teachers who need broadband for lessons. We are very pleased with this announcement."

Eligibility criteria

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Only one commercial service per eligible home or business can be ordered under the NSS Scheme[iv]. Residents who have not previously connected to a subsidised satellite service under the Australian Broadband Guarantee or the NBN Co's ISS program will be eligible to apply.

Those residents eligible for NBN Co's LTSS will be able to connect to the service[v] following its launch.

There are five basic steps to applying for the scheme:

  • Visit www.nbnco.com.au/satellite and click on the Broadband Service Locator (BSL).
  • Input your address and a few other details into the BSL.
  • If you are eligible, contact NBN Co to provide you with a registration number.
  • You will then be sent an information pack including your registration number and a declaration form.
  • Complete the application and declaration form and send these plus the registration number to your chosen participating internet service provider and choose a plan.

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