NZ's UFB uptake highest in regional areas

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Friday, 21 June, 2019

NZ's UFB uptake highest in regional areas

Regional areas of New Zealand are leading uptake of the nation's Ultrafast Broadband (UFB) high-speed broadband network, according to statistics from the Ministry of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media.

The data show that the UFB rollout is now 79% complete, passing nearly 1.5 million premises in 70 towns and cities nationwide — a population coverage of 75%.

Regional uptake of the technology is strong, with the top areas for UFB uptake including towns and smaller cities including Waiuku (62.1%), Nelson (61.3%), Hamilton (60.1%), Tauranga (60.1%) and Waipu (59.3%). By comparison, Auckland ranks a mere ninth place at 57.5%.

Construction of the UFB is expected to be complete by the end of 2022, by which time the network is expected to be extended to 390 towns and cities.

Meanwhile, a new report from New Zealand's Commerce Commission shows that most New Zealand broadband connections are capable of reliably streaming high definition video nearly all the time.

The second Measuring Broadband New Zealand report, based on speed tests conducted with broadband testing provider SamKnows, found that more than 99% of fibre connections on the UFB are capable of streaming ultra-high definition 4K video over Netflix, compared to 87.9% for VDSL and 62% for fixed wireless, but just 12.4% for ADSL.

But even ADSL is capable of streaming HD Netflix video nearly 90% of the time, the speed tests found.

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