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OECD broadband statistics show New Zealand improving

OECD broadband statistics show New Zealand improving but still could do better

Media release – 10 January 2014

Today’s release of OECD broadband statistics shows that New Zealand’s is slowly climbing the ranking table, but that there is still a lot of room for improvement, InternetNZ (Internet New Zealand Inc) says.

The headline statistic is that New Zealand is in the middle of the pack for broadband penetration, ranking 15th out of 34 countries with 29.5 subscriptions per 100 residents. This is marginally above the international average of 26.7.

While this is an improvement on last year’s placing of 17th, New Zealand is still part of a very small chasing pack of countries suffering usage or data caps on their broadband plans.

As of September 2012, the OECD reports that only three countries offered no plans free from data caps; New Zealand, Australia and Iceland.  Even then, Australia’s average plan was for 310gb compared to New Zealand’s 65gb.

InternetNZ CEO Jordan Carter says these two statistics are linked. “Service quality is an important driver of broadband take-up.  As improved content is delivered to New Zealand, these caps should become the anachronistic relic they are. The demise of data caps offers more options for broadband users, and will help encourage take-up.

“Already we are seeing some of the smaller retailers offer uncapped broadband plans, but we need the bigger players to step-up and deliver better service. It’s not 1999 anymore,” Mr Carter says.

New Zealand also performed badly on price, with the cheapest plans being the 7th most expensive and the most expensive plans being among the highest in the world.

“Fixing this will also drive broadband uptake,” says Mr Carter. “We expect that when prices for wholesale copper broadband services drop in December this year, those still not using broadband are more likely to come on-board.”

ENDS

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