|This article relies on references to primary sources. (July 2010)|
|Key people||Ivan Slavich CEO
Wayne Bouffler (CTO)
John Mackay, Chairman
|Products||Direct broadcast satellite, Pay television, Pay-per-view, broadband internet, cable television, land-line and wireless services|
TransACT Capital Communications is 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. The company was part-owned by Actew Corporation a 50% joint venture partner in ActewAGL (the main energy and water utility company in the Australian Capital Territory) and since February 2004 TransACT has contracted many of their administrative and marketing functions to ActewAGL. TransACT was acquired by iiNet Limited in November 2011.
The development of TransACT's vision and business plan commenced in 1996, led by a small team comprising Robin Eckermann (Chief Architect), Joe Ceccato, Robert Clarke and Jane Taylor, working under the guidance of ACTEW Executive Neville Smith. One of the distinguishing features of the business model was the adoption of an Open Access Network or OAN philosophy – many years before that approach attracted widespread interest around the world. The National Broadband Network or NBN is also modelled on similar OAN philosophy, separating the wholesale and retail businesses.
TransACT operates the open network in collaboration with ten ISPs. These include a mix of large national organisations and smaller local operations. One of the ISPs (Grapevine) which was previously owned by both TransACT and ActewAGL was taken onboard by TransACT as a wholly owned subsidiary in March 2010.
The company has an extensive fibre network in the ACT. SDH, ATM and IP/MPLS Metro Ethernet technologies are used to deliver services via dedicated hubs or gateways that are built around the region. Services are delivered to various businesses, government departments and residential customers via a diverse range of access networks.
The first broadband platform rolled out known as Phase 1 network was based on FTTC (fibre to the curb) design with nodes being placed within 300 metres of premises. SDH backbone is used to transport voice, data and video whereas VDSL technology is used as the access network to get customers connected to TransACT's high-speed broadband and digital TV services. Coincidentally, TransACT also became the first telco in Australia to implement this particular high-speed broadband technology much superior to ADSL, which was prominent throughout the country at that time. TransACT remains as the only telco to support VDSL and the products are still actively sold with network reach-ability to over 55,000 homes in the ACT.
The Phase 2 rollout involved TransACT placing its own DSLAM equipment within Telstra exchanges and utilising their own fibre-optic backhaul to their main data centre in Dickson, ACT. TransACT completed their ADSL 2/2+ rollout on 1 March 2007. The Phase 2 network is available to anyone outside Phase 1 with a Telstra phone line in Canberra and Queanbeyan, as long as they are within sufficient distance of their telephone exchange – as with any ADSL service.
In 2009, TransACT again became one of the very first providers in the world to commence greenfield rollout and upgrade of existing VDSL access network to VDSL2, the most advanced and fastest digital subscriber line (DSL) broadband technology commercially available, commencing with a number of medium- to high-density developments in Canberra’s more established suburbs. The upgrade increases broadband speeds by up to four times, compared to the fastest existing ADSL2+ networks used by most carriers. As with the existing VDSL network, VDSL2 products also include triple-play services. By mid-2009, multiples sites including The Avenue on Northbourne Avenue, Skyplaza in Woden and The Gateway at Kingston Foreshore were upgraded to VDSL2 with more projects currently underway.
The telco is the first in the country to build a dedicated G.984 (GPON) based FTTH or FTTP gateway and also the first provider in Australia to offer broadband services at up to 100 Mbit/s download and 20 Mbit/s upload speeds which were made available on 4 September 2009. The gateway build in the suburb of Forde close to the Gungahlin township trunks back to TransACT's core network in Dickson via a high-bandwidth MPLS backbone. With such infrastructure in place, TransACT is able to offer triple-play services to customers via fibre without the need for any copper in the path, thus enabling higher bit-rates. Similar PON technology and network hierarchy has been chosen by NBNco Limited, the company established in 2009 to design, build and operate the National Broadband Network
As of end of 2009, five new greenfield suburbs, namely Forde, Franklin, Crace, Casey, Bonner, some parts of Kingston and the Flemington road corridor, were all wired up for this next-generation technology with many new suburbs expected to come on board in the ACT region. As of mid-2010, the total number of premises passed through had reached almost 11,000.
TransACT also offers a range of wholesale services to business and ISP customers, including Colocation, IP transit, peering, data centre services, VPN, managed services, point-to-point and point-to-multipoint services including VPWS and VPLS services of up to 1 Gbit/s for customers anywhere on their network.
In July 2010, they launched the 'eHub', Australia's first commercial IPTV product bundled with a feature-rich set-top box capable of handling high-definition video with an onboard personal video recorder.
TransACT is the naming rights sponsor of the TransACT Canberra Capitals, a Canberra team competing in the Women's National Basketball League (WNBL) from October to February each year. TransACT first sponsored the Capitals in 2000, when the new company was looking for a community partner.
Grapevine is an internet service provider based in Canberra, Australia, wholly owned by TransACT. It provides dial-up and broadband ISP services, delivered across the TransACT fibre-optic broadband network.
The company had its beginning in ActewAGL Net Connect, a wholly owned subsidiary of ActewAGL, that started in 2003. In April 2005, it was relaunced as Grapevine that was jointly owned by ActewAGL, the main utility company in the region, and TransACT until May 2010 when ActewAGL sold its share of Grapevine to TransACT.
- Downie, Graham (19 December 2007). "TransACT in Vic move". Canberra Times. p. 6.
- Stephen Withers (8 June 2011). "iTWire - Neighbourhood Cable rebrands as TransACT". itwire.com. Retrieved 26 December 2011.
- "About Grapevine". TransACT Capital Communications Pty Ltd. Retrieved 2011-03-16.
- TransACT homepage
- Neighbourhood Cable homepage
- Grapevine homepage
- ActewAGL homepage
- ISPs available through TransACT