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Kiwi broadband just doesn’t measure up

29 May 2006

Kiwi broadband just doesn’t measure up – research report released

“The research report we are releasing today shows that current Kiwi broadband offerings just don’t measure up,” said InternetNZ Executive Director Keith Davidson today.

Mr Davidson was commenting at the release of a research report commissioned by InternetNZ, called “Comparison of OECD Broadband Markets”, prepared by Wairua Consulting. The report analyses 2,586 broadband packages from 26 OECD countries, on a range of indicators including download and upload speeds, costs, data caps, variety of offerings, contention ratios and finally an overall ranking table.

“The top country in the sample is Sweden, and New Zealand is 5th to bottom at 22nd out of 26. This goes a long way towards explaining why New Zealand also has a similar ranking for uptake of broadband,” Keith Davidson said.

“New Zealand’s position can best be described as not paying much, and not getting much for its money.

“Most alarming from the report is the clearly out-of-step position of New Zealand in respect of data caps. Data caps are just not common practice across the OECD, and as outlined by an OECD official at the TUANZ Telecommunications Day on 24 May they create a real and serious constraint on the uses to which broadband internet connections can be put.

“Telecom and the rest of the industry need to give up data caps as soon as possible, just as they had to give up per hour dial-up charging years ago in favour of flat rate access.. This report gives a clear fail grade to the current offerings. Telecom has previously claimed that New Zealand incurs higher data costs due to the costs of transmitting data ’across the ocean’, yet makes no attempt to separately charge national traffic at reduced rates.

“Doing better does not have to wait for regulation – Telecom and other providers could make unilateral improvements to ameliorate the worst of the items noted in this report.

“InternetNZ will be writing to Theresa Gattung calling on Telecom to do just that,” concluded Keith Davidson.

ENDS

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