Chorus has finished building its Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) network in Queenstown, meaning more than 7000 households, businesses, schools and health facilities now have access to fibre.
“UFB has the potential to transform New Zealand’s economy, our communities, and the way we connect to the rest of the world, so we’re really looking forward to seeing how the Queenstown community can take advantage of having world-class connectivity right on their door step,” says Nick Woodward, Executive Member, Chorus.
Woodward says Queenstown residents are already large consumers of fibre broadband, with the average household using nearly 220GB last month, up from 130GB at the start of last year.
“There are changing consumer needs when it comes to broadband, both for households and businesses and the UFB initiative has been an integral part of meeting this change,” he says.
“Typically, homes now have several connected devices at any one time, so we are all using far more data and many of us are demanding faster and more reliable broadband speeds to stream or download high definition TV and video.
“More and more consumers also want the freedom of unlimited plans. These plans are competitively priced and take away the fear of chewing through a data allowance and being charged extra.”
According to Communications Minister Amy Adams, over 1200 connections have already been made to New Zealand’s growing fibre network.
“The UFB build is New Zealand’s biggest infrastructure build that’s being delivered on time and within budget,” Adams adds. “Queenstown is the nineteenth completed build and total investment is nearly $10 million.”
Adams says six schools in Queenstown are able to connect to UFB and N4L, including the new Wakatipu High Frankton Flats School, which is under construction.
“UFB helps amplify the tourist experience in Queenstown, as visitors can share their travels domestically or internationally. It also helps tourism businesses in remote locations to promote themselves and take advantage of New Zealand’s tourism industry,” Adams adds.
The UFB rollout in Queenstown began in September 2012 and since the start, Adams says the Government has allocated a further $360 million to extend faster broadband across New Zealand, and cover mobile black spots.
With the UFB build now complete in 19 towns and cities, Adams says the first stage of the initiative will enable at least 75 per cent of New Zealanders to access fibre to the premise by 2019, with UFB phase two extending reach by at least an additional five percent.