NZ Broadband

Fibre is fast but what's around the corner

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May 20, 2020

We’re getting hungrier for bytes. Over the last few weeks, we’ve begun to enjoy the taste of a little more freedom. The joy of take out coffee. And escaping the kitchen, which resulted in 300,000 McDonald’s burgers being devoured in one day and ingredients running out at some branches.

It’s all a far cry from alert level 4 lockdown, where the only thing we could consume endlessly - without fear of shortages - was data.

During this period, average daily network traffic increased by around 30%. That’s still comfortably well within the network’s capacity and usage is now moving back towards pre-lockdown levels.

However, it’s been a reminder that New Zealand homes and businesses need an ultra fast fibre network that can evolve to satisfy our appetite for increasing numbers of devices and the data-hungry applications they use.


Gearing up for the future

The technology used by routers in most households – known as WiFi 5 – is fine but it can struggle as more devices fight for the same signal. This leads to the potential for slower speeds and interruptions as we become more reliant on the internet for data hungry tasks such as streaming, gaming and the growth of smart appliances and infrastructure in our cities.

The latest router technology, WiFi 6, is a game changer because it encodes data more efficiently, packs more data into the same radio wave, and then makes it easier for individual devices to receive the specific information they’ve requested. This means it doesn’t suffer from the same interference and speed issues as previous WiFi technologies.  In fact, it’s so effective that the days of struggling for WiFi at busy bars, the airport or even sports stadiums will become a thing of the past.

It may be a while before internet service providers supply WiFi 6 routers with their broadband packages. However, they can be purchased from the high street or online, with prices starting from around $300. WiFi 6 enabled smartphones such as iPhone and Samsung are available, however, a WiFi 6 router will also increase the speed of many older devices.


Hyperfibre – broadband that’s 40 times faster

Also paving the way for our increasingly connected world is Hyperfibre. It’s the next generation of fibre technology on the Chorus fibre network, offering lightning fast download and upload speeds of up to 4,000 mbps second. That’s around 40 times faster than New Zealand’s average fixed broadband connection.

This is achieved using our existing fibre network, so there’s no need to dig up roads. However, Chorus’ latest ONT boxes (optical network terminals), similar to the one you may have connected to your router at home, will help to vastly increase the line rate, which means far more data can be delivered to devices.  

Hyperfibre is perfect for businesses who consume and create large amounts of data simultaneously. It will also be welcomed by those in data-hungry homes who want to explore the exciting possibilities that ultra-smooth, high-capacity and low-latency broadband offers. 2,000 and 4,000 mbps Hyperfibre plans are already being enjoyed by businesses and households where the roll out has begun. If you want to find out when it will be available in your area, you can register your interest here.

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