Critics say ultrafast broadband delivery too slow
Wed, 25 Jul 2012 8:30a.m.
By Adrien Taylor
It's now been just over a year since Parliament voted to deliver ultrafast broadband.
But critics say the deployment progress is too slow, and not enough is being done to tell people when the ultrafast service will be available to them, and what benefits it will bring.
Gamers, schools, businesses and all heavy internet users have been waiting for the rollout – but depending on where you live, you shouldn't expect ultrafast broadband (UFB) to arrive ultra fast.
“It's a long time, nine years to get everything sorted - I'd much rather see it happen a lot sooner,” says Telecommunications Users Association CEO Paul Brislen.
Chorus - the largest provider of the fibre optic cable needed for UFB - has just entered its second year of an 8-year rollout.
It'll cover large parts of Auckland, Dunedin, Wellington and Nelson amongst others.
But chances are you don't even know when you'll be reached, or if you are already.
“We've got about 60,000 homes today that can get fibre and that's going to about 140,000 homes and businesses by the end of the year but less than 1000 today actually have it,” says Orcon chief executive Scott Bartlett.
Mr Brislen says there's a simple explanation for the slow UFB uptake.
“I put down the lack of uptake to a lack of communication. So even if they've come to your street and dug up your street and laid the fibre the odds are that you don't actually have anybody knocking at your door saying, ‘you do know that you have this fibre network at your doorstep’.”
He says good progress is being made in the Government's priority UFB list – schools, businesses, health care centres, and Government departments.
And the minister overseeing the rollout says the residential uptake will increase with time.
"In terms of residential uptake, it was always our expectation that uptake would build gradually over the period of the network build," says Minister for Communications and Information Technology Amy Adams.
And those, like Christchurch-based firm Trineo, who are already reaping the benefits of ultrafast broadband, do say it's worth the wait.
“A number of new services are going to come online which will make use of the ultrafast broadband and see that it is a valuable investment for the next 10-20 years,” says Trineo co-director Daniel Fowlie.
But that valuable investment doesn't come cheap. Trineo pays $650 a month for just 50 gigabytes of data.
UFB in your area
To find out when fibre optic cables will be installed at your home our work address, head to the following links depending on where you live.
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30/07/2012 9:51:48 p.m.
Its not slow it's just the telcos are up to their old dirty tricks. Expensive, data caps, selling capped services as something they are not, talking fines on the chin then continuing the behaviour. Then again the whole show is being run by one of the most heavily fined public companies in Australasia.
25/07/2012 6:02:28 p.m.
Either way when it does finally reach everyone we will still be behind the rest of the world just like in everything else
25/07/2012 5:24:00 p.m.
Cell phone towers need to be regulated as they are going up anywhere and everywhere against many peoples wishes and health concerns. These cell phone towers need to be installed well away from schools with vulnerable growing children and built up areas. NZers need to do their research on tests done re Cellphone towers in Europe and successful lawsuits in America etc very scary results re the affects of cellphone towers.
25/07/2012 3:13:35 p.m.
"But that valuable investment doesn't come cheap. Trineo pays $650 a month for just 50 gigabytes of data."Trineo it really doesn't look like you're on UFB. Looks like you're just on commercial fibre if you're paying that much for that little! If you're really on UFB, your $650 per month should be getting you a hell of a lot more than that
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