Technology Dec 2011
Downloads driving demand
“Progress was made this year when Telecom doubled its data caps to 20Gb for many residential customers and Slingshot began offering uncapped plans to 5000 customers on 12 month contracts.”
Ultrafast enhancements to fixed line, mobile and undersea broadband can’t come soon enough to meet the insatiable appetite for on-demand TV, music, maps, games, social networking and doing business online.
While the average New Zealand connection currently staggers along at around 3Mbit/sec, by 2016 the broadband blues will be banished when fibre optic cabling and mega-mobile services will allegedly deliver a minimum of 50Mbit/sec to most homes and business.
According to a
recent poll by US-based Zigby International, high speed internet has had
the greatest impact of any technology over the past decade, and many
people claim they couldn’t live without it.
According to InternetNZ and StatisticsNZ, 1.5 million New Zealanders subscribed to broadband in the year to June 2011, up 14 percent on 2010.
holding us back
Some progress was made this year when Telecom doubled its data caps to 20Gb for many residential customers and Slingshot began offering uncapped plans to 5000 customers on 12 month contracts.
While the number of 20Gb plus data plans has increased overall, video on demand, replay TV and other rich content services continue to push the boundaries.
OECD broadband figures for the year to June 2010 rank New Zealand as
17th out of 31 nations, with 24.5 percent of the population on fixed
line broadband ahead of Australia at 18th place.
Telecom and Vodafone jointly won the $300 million rural broadband
contract with a mix of enhanced copper, mobile, fixed wireless and fibre,
promising a minimum of 28.8Mbit/sec to outlying areas by 2016. This will
quadruple when next generation cellular technology comes into play.
When completed, almost all households will be able to receive a minimum peak speed of 50Mbit/sec – although the majority should get at least 100Mbit/sec.
Crown Fibre Holdings is promising its fibre-to-the-premises network will reach 75 percent of New Zealand and be live by 2020. Work began mid-year and is expected to be completed within six years.
It’s been alleged the Southern Cross cable monopoly is a factor in internet providers maintaining low broadband data caps. The Telecommunications Users Association is investigating.
Southern Cross, in the process of upgrading our links to Australia and the US from 10Gbit/sec to 40Gbit/sec capacity, says it’s already dropped per gigabyte prices to ISPs. InternetNZ is now asking whether ISPs may be keeping data caps artificially high.
Welcome competition in the undersea cable business is expected from
Pacific Fibre’s proposed $505 million
international connections, with claims this will reduce costs to all New
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