Residential UFB plans, October 2013

After a slow start, New Zealand’s fibre network is gathering momentum.

Crown Fibre Holdings reports 300,000 end users were able to connect to the network in June 2013.

Meanwhile the June quarter saw a sharp rise in the number of actual connections from around 6,000 to 10,000. With the nation’s two largest service providers, Telecom NZ and Vodafone now selling UFB and a backlog of customers waiting for connection that number looks set to climb.

Speaking at the launch of his company’s residential UFB offering earlier this month, Vodafone consumer director, Matt Williams said he was confident his company’s TV package will deliver more customers.

Vodafone is the main new entrant to digital’s list of residential UFB plans.

There are few other tweaks. Our table just lists the faster 100/50 Mbps fibre plans because, in our view, these are the ones that matter. The slower 30/10 Mbps fibre speed isn’t much of a step up from copper.

We’ve deliberately kept the list simple. Two things to watch for: first many service providers have limited coverage areas; second, some of the more expensive services include extras that may or may not be valuable to you. It pays to check for more information, that’s why we’ve provided a link to each service provider.

Service provider Data GB Monthly charge $ $ per extra GB
Actrix 1000 250 2
Inspire 1000 265 $10 /10GB
Lightwire 600 159 Note a
Now 350 145 2
Orcon unlimited 134 Note c
Primowireless 500 299 1
Snap 150 110 Note b
Telecom 500 159 0.5
The Cloud unlimited 155
Vibe Communications 20 96 0.8
Vodaphone 250 119 1
Voyager 1000 195
Worldnet 1100 179 2

a) Lightwire has soft caps. If you habitually run over you’ll be asked to move to a higher plan
b) Snap sells more 100GB data blocks for $15.
c) Orcon’s unlimited plan has fair use limits and the company pools available data. Read that as “if you’re a huge user you may run up against the limits of unlimited”.
d) Vodafone fibre costs $30 less with some mobile accounts. Sky TV packages cost extra, prices start at $45 a month.