Telecom VDSL arrives, small town users biggest winners

Telecom is now selling VDSL in New Zealand. The company says the service will reach about two in three homes delivering a substantially faster internet experience than ADSL.

Prices are higher than ADSL, $10 more than comparable plans. In addition there are installation charges $99 for home users willing to commit to a year’s contract and $299 for those who don’t. A 500GB plan is $129. Businesses will pay the same as for existing ADSL plans but there’s a $199 installation fee.

VDSL speeds depend on how far a building is from an exchange or roadside cabinet. In most cases they are comparable with low-end fibre speeds on the UFB network. And for most users represent a big jump from ADSL speeds. In my case I live around 600m from a cabinet and testing shows I should be able to see 40Mbps down and 10Mbps up. With ADSL I typically get 12 to 14Mbps down and less than 1Mbps up.

In a media statement Telecom Retail CEO said VDSL gives users a taste of fibre ahead of the nationwide UFB roll-out. That’s true, low-end fibre speeds are similar to VDSL, but the UFB network will be more reliable and have lower latency. The biggest winners will be users in small towns that are not scheduled to join the UFB network but are already on the Chorus cabinet network.