WhaleTech: When will uncapped Broadband come to NZ?


The Telegraph reports

The UK’s most popular broadband now comes without any usage limits, and BT claims it is also free from traffic management. Packages start from £16 [NZD 30] a month for 16Mbps copper broadband, rising to £23 [NZD 43] for 38Mbps Infinity or £26[NZD 48]  for 76Mbps Infinity.*  

Previously, the cheapest BT option for unlimited broadband cost £26 [NZD 48] per month.

… “BT’s decision to make all their unlimited packages ‘truly unlimited’ – ie free from any download limits, fair usage policy or traffic management – is pivotal for the broadband industry. O2, Sky and most recently Plusnet all have ‘truly unlimited’ broadband deals already, but BT is the biggest broadband provider in the UK in terms of market share and where they lead, others follow.”

All the major providers have increasingly engaged in a war of words over what ‘unlimited’ and ‘traffic management’ mean.

“Customers are now much more aware of the terms of their broadband service, and are questioning why limits are in place,” said Baliszewski. Download limits and fair usage policies, etc, are becoming unpopular, especially as household data consumption is growing all the time. A truly unlimited broadband package is the only option for customers who want to fully enjoy the wide variety of content available to them over the internet.”

As you can see, the amount paid in the UK is now related to the bandwidth you want to access, and not the amount of data you transfer over it.

With the increase of on-demand movies, video and TV content, it does indeed make sense to remove data caps altogether.

In New Zealand, Unlimited Internet access has been tried before, starting with the (then) infamous IHUG offering unlimited dial-up packages.  But as ISPs have offered “unlimited” over the years, there have always been traffic management and “fair use” provisions to ensure the 0.5% of customers savvy enough to create more than 50% of the load could be brought into line.

Over the last 12 months, New Zealand broadband allowances have been generously doubled by the major players, but we are still paying over and above what other countries are shelling out for what is essentially a much better service.  Our global remoteness and low-density population can only account for some of it.

Unlimited Broadband will come to New Zealand eventually, but don’t expect it any time soon.


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