It seems many Australians still aren't aware the NBN isn't always the only game in town for broadband - nor for phone services.
While many Australians have moved to exclusively using mobile phones, some still need or prefer a landline-type arrangement.
Generally speaking, 18 months after the NBN is available in an area, ADSL and landline telephone services are disconnected. However, it doesn't always mean you need to sign on to the NBN in order to continue having the functionality of a landline or a broadband connection.
Unfortunately, it appears some NBN-based ISPs may still be giving this impression.
"We are hearing from some of our customers instances of NBN retailers/resellers/sales agents saying if these customers don’t switch to NBN, their phone line will be cut off," says Lightning Broadband CEO, Jeremy Rich. "This is not true, and if this is what is being said, then it's very misleading."
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) clearly states:
"Some homes and businesses get their internet and phone services from companies that use networks that compete with the NBN. If you’re with one of these companies you don’t have to move to the NBN and your services won’t be disconnected. "
Lightning Broadband is one such ISP that competes with the NBN - not just on broadband, but phone services too.
Lightning Broadband offers what's called Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), available as an option with its internet connectivity plans. The cost is significantly less in comparison to a normal telephone service over the switched telephone network, with pricing from as little as $10 a month.
To use VoIP services, a VoIP enabled modem and phone handset is required, which the company can provide if required.
Lightning Broadband's VoIP service operates just like a normal phone - people can call in and the customer can call out using the handset.
"We can even port customers' existing phone numbers across to our platform - meaning they can retain their existing landline number if they desire," says Mr. Rich.
For business customers, Lightning Broadband can offer various additional services, including establishing a 13, 1300 or 1800 service or a business/commercial virtual PABX.
Further information on Lightning Broadband's VoIP service can be found here.