Is the NZ broadband consumer getting a good deal?
6 March 2006
Is the New Zealand broadband
consumer really getting a good deal?
The evidence from this new report is 'no'! This recently completed study examines DSL-based broadband products in the UK and New Zealand. Prices are levelled by applying The Economist's Big Mac Index and factors such as download speed, upload speed, contention ratios and data caps are compared.
New Zealand appears price competitive but customers receive relatively poor levels of service.
UK consumers get a wide choice of speeds (up and down), can pay more for lower contention ratios and the majority aren't affected by data caps. Conversely, New Zealand consumers are presented with a narrow range of repackaged products, have little choice over performance. They can't even find out how overloaded the network is. Data caps are the norm and all to often result in throttled back speeds if exceeded.
New Zealand consumers pay less to get less!
The network monopoly limits variety in the market, making price a significant discriminating factor. The research suggests that New Zealanders could benefit from greater competition at an infrastructure level and that greater transparency of network standards and service levels is required.
A copy of the report is attached