Take-up of NZ's UFB network hits 44%


By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Friday, 21 September, 2018


Take-up of NZ's UFB network hits 44%

Take-up of New Zealand’s Ultra-fast Broadband (UFB) has reached 44%, far exceeding the initial expectations for the fibre broadband network, the New Zealand Government has announced.

There are now more than 605,000 people connected to the UFB from a possible 1.37 million, Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister Kris Faafoi said.

When the government commenced the project in 2009, initial projections were that take-up would reach 30% by the end of this year.

Meanwhile, more than 70% of New Zealanders have access to the network, and this is on track to increase to 87% by the end of 2022, by which time the fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) network will cover more than 390 cities and towns.

“The UFB program is one of the largest infrastructure programs in our history, with the aim of connecting more New Zealanders to fast broadband,” Faafoi said.

“Being connected has become an essential part of our everyday lives. Customers are connecting on higher speed plans with 91% taking 100 Mbps and 10% taking 1 Gbps in the last 12 months. These high speeds can make a huge difference, whether for urban schools connecting for educational resources or for businesses across our regions.”

The UFB network is being operated by wholesale telecoms operator Chorus on behalf of the government. Chorus separated from the former Telecom NZ to clinch the project. Rural areas of New Zealand are being served with the concurrent Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI).

Image credit: ©iStockphoto.com/au/Henrik Jonsson

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