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Rural Broadband now live in Riversdale Beach


Media Release

17 January 2013

Rural Broadband now live in Riversdale Beach

Vodafone has kick started the year by switching on a newly built cell site at Riversdale Beach, under the Governments Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI).

A 25 metre monopole tower provides service to over 410 households in the area. The service, with urban comparable pricing, delivers not only mobile coverage, but wireless broadband via a high performance modem, adding a WiFi network into the home. Phone calls can also be made through this service by plugging an existing landline phone directly into the modem, removing the need for a landline connection. Customers can port their existing landline number to this new service.

There are three new RBI sites in the area – along with Riversdale, as two new towers will be built at Castle Point and Opaki next year. Vodafone confirms two of the existing cell sites in the area have already been upgraded to deliver the wireless broadband service – Masterton and Masterton Straits. One remaining site at Otahoua will also be upgraded before 2015.

Vodafone’s Business Development Manager Stephen Hautler says the new cell site brings greater options to the community, with households and businesses now having choice in broadband service.

“Switching to wireless broadband can provide a consistent and reliable service to residents. It also offers the rural community the opportunity to increase production and monitoring through machine to machine automation,” he said.

An additional benefit of RBI for rural communities is the extension of mobile coverage to include 4,500km of rural New Zealand roads, which until now have been without.

“This is a massive benefit for rural communities in dealing with emergencies, transport logistics, road safety and other real life circumstances that have been hampered by limited coverage,” said Hautler.

Under the five year RBI plan, Vodafone will upgrade 387 existing cell towers and build a further 154 new towers in rural areas all over New Zealand. The government is funding the civil construction costs of these new sites which are designed to accommodate Vodafone equipment and that of other mobile and wireless operators. 26 new sites have been built so far, and an additional 131 have been upgraded.

Customers can find out if this service will be available at their address by checking online at

www.vodafone.co.nz/rural-broadband.

More imagery of example monopole towers is available if required, along with a proposed RBI coverage map of the wider area and a schematic diagram of how wireless broadband works.

ends

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