Quarterly figures from Communications Minister Amy Adams show a sizeable jump in the numbers of people with faster, government-sponsored broadband connections.
In the three months to September 30, the number of users able to connect the UFB climbed by 21,000 to a total of 320,000 across New Zealand.
The government reports a 42 percent increase in the number of customers signing up for UFB services. This takes the total number connected to the network to more than 14,000.
This represents an uptake rate of 4.4 percent. While the number is still fairly low, the large jump during the quarter shows sales ramped up once, New Zealand’s largest ISP, Telecom NZ, began selling fibre services. Numbers are likely to tick up again in the current quarter with Vodafone also beginning to sell UFB. Now all the main ISPs offer UFB services.
According to the government, these numbers are in-line with planned progress.
The Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI) reports more 137,000 rural homes and businesses now have fast wireless broadband. A further 56,000 rural homes and businesses have access to improved copper broadband services. Most of these are on lines connected to a fibre to the node network.
Vodafone has installed 15 new towers and upgraded 33.
Almost 1900 schools are now able to connect to fibre. In addition, 38 of the most remote rural schools in New Zealand now have access to broadband capable of peak speeds of at least 10 Mbps. More than 75 of the target for schools getting faster connections has now been reached.