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Spark network upgrade increases resiliency

Media Release

18 July 2017

Spark lower South Island network upgrade increases resiliency

Spark has recently put the finishing touches on an upgrade of its core Optical Transport Network (OTN) in the South Island with the completion of the lower South Island loop from Invercargill, via Queenstown to Christchurch. This upgrade provides an additional route on the Spark network, in case of a natural disaster or emergency.

Spark New Zealand’s Optical Transport Network (OTN), is one of the largest, most resilient and efficient core data transport networks in the country. The OTN provides the backbone and core connectivity between all the main cities in New Zealand, transporting all customers’ mobile, broadband, landline, and managed and unmanaged enterprise traffic.

The completion of the network provides towns and cities south of Christchurch with fully diverse connectivity between them.

In December 2016, Spark announced that it, in conjunction with Nokia, deployed New Zealand’s first 200 Gbit/s fibre link into its OTN between the Spark Global Gateway in Takapuna in the north of Auckland, and a core router in Papakura in South Auckland, which connects to the Southern Cross cable. The 200 Gbit/s technology has been successfully deployed on the new Invercargill to Christchurch section of the network.

Spark Chief Operating Officer, Mark Beder, says the upgrade delivers benefits to New Zealanders.

“This upgrade massively improves the resiliency of our network in the South Island. Having more high speed, high capacity links gives us more options for routing traffic and keeping people connected, especially during emergency situations.

“This upgrade also significantly increases our network’s core capacity, ensuring we can keep up with New Zealanders’ huge appetite for data and helping to deliver a congestion-free experience for our customers,” Beder says.

Beder also praised the work, which was completed with the assistance of Spark’s partners Transworks, Downer, and NEC. “All our partners were extremely involved, taking months to plan and execute this upgrade,” Beder adds.

These upgrades underline Spark’s commitment to building a world-class wireless data network for all New Zealanders.


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