Microsoft’s eagerly anticipated Windows 10 upgrade has caused UFB congestion across New Zealand to increase by an average of 40 percent since its global launch on July 29.
A new study of over 2,000 Kiwi businesses, conducted by local telecommunications company Digital Island, claims that the four gigabyte sized, free upgrade to the operating system, has caused a daily average increase to UFB traffic of around 40 percent - with peak network traffic increasing by over 100 percent at times.
Digital Island CEO Blair Stewart, says although the upgrade has been progressively released to users, the increase in traffic volume has been “significant” over the past week, and is set to continue as hundreds of thousands of computers throughout the country download the new operating system.
Consequently, Stewart says each upgrade will take around half an hour at peak UFB speed.
“Although it's not known how many computers in New Zealand are eligible for the free operating system update, we can estimate that for every million computers, 4000 terabytes of data will be transferred,” he says.
“In addition to the Windows 10 upgrade, there are a number of events which could impact on the consistency of UFB speeds given the current state of broadband infrastructure.
“These include a virus outbreak, widespread hacking events such as denial of service attacks (DDoS), and the ongoing increase in popularity of video on demand services.”
Stewart says as Kiwi businesses rapidly build their reliance around UFB for their audio and video communications it becomes increasingly important for the country’s broadband infrastructure to offer stability.
“One of the key selling points of UFB for businesses was to improve video conferencing and VoIP call capacity and quality, but these are the first things to be affected when there is a high number of users all downloading and streaming at the same time,” he adds.
At present however, Stewart says UFB speeds in some areas are dipping as low as 2mbps, “a far cry” from the advertised “up to 100mbps” touted by many telcos.
“We believe this issue is only going to get worse as the uptake of UFB accelerates,” he forecasts. “Currently just 14 percent of the country is connected, but the congestion is set to increase and affect performance more as this number grows.”
Government figures for the first quarter of this year show a 23 percent increase in the number of end users connecting to UFB, with over 618,000 homes, workplaces and schools now able to connect.