Distance is the biggest challenge we face in delivering better broadband to all New Zealanders. On our copper network, a broadband signal can be delivered within a 6km radius, but its performance degrades the further your connection is from the exchange or cabinet.
Where possible, we have used fibre to extend the reach of our copper network by rolling out fibre-fed cabinets to rural areas. The fibre essentially powers up the broadband services at each cabinet meaning the speed and broadband performance is improved, so much so, that if you are located within 800m of a cabinet you can potentially access a VDSL service with speeds up to 70Mbps.
As we install more cabinets we are also making more broadband ports available. Older rural cabinets only have about half the number of broadband ports, so in some areas there has been a waiting list for broadband. Our new cabinets have a port for each phone line and many are now future proofed to cater for increased demand.