There are many broadband providers in New Zealand that have widely expanded their offerings since they first introduced home broadband plans. Before, Kiwis could only choose from one to three plans – but now, you can select from dozens of different options from a growing number of broadband providers.
If you only have limited choices, it’s not that hard to distinguish which is the best for you. However, it can be difficult to choose the best one if you have plenty of options to choose from. If you’re having trouble picking the best broadband plan for you, fret not!
We’ve gathered together a list of the most common broadband plan types, according to speed, that you can purchase in New Zealand.
If you grew up with an internet at home during the 90s or early 2000s, this was probably the type of internet connection that you had. It’s an internet service that’s delivered to your home through copper cables. These lines use the same cables that are used to provide landline services to your home.
The speeds and reliability of your connection depends on how far away you are from the roadside cabinet. The closer your home is to the cabinet, the more consistent your connection will be. Consequently, the farther away your home is from the cabinet, the more inconsistent your connection will be.
Generally, there are two copper broadband plans available across New Zealand; these are ADSL and VDSL.
ADSL is the traditional type of broadband across New Zealand. As this is the oldest one, it has the most coverage across the country. Whether you’re in a busy urban area like Auckland CBD, or in a quiet rural community like the Chatham Islands, you can easily purchase an ADSL plan.
Average download speeds range from 7–24Mbps, while upload speeds range from 0.13–1Mbps. If you see ADSL1, it means that your line is in a rural area; if you see ADSL2+, it means that your line is in an urban area.
VDSL is the faster brother of ADSL. While it still uses copper cables, it uses more modern broadband technology, giving you an internet connection that’s almost twice as fast as ADSL. It’s not as widely available throughout New Zealand, but it still covers roughly 80% of the country.
Depending on how far away your home is from the cabinet, average download speeds can reach up to 50Mbps, and upload speeds can reach up to 10Mbps. This is more than enough for basic online tasks such as browsing social media sites, and even streaming music and videos.
Fibre broadband utilises all the latest internet technologies. As it uses modern fibre optic cables, it’s currently the fastest internet connection available. With fibre, download speeds averages between 30-1000Mbps, and upload speeds between 10-500Mbps.
While fibre is fast, it’s availability is limited across the country. Fibre broadband may not have rolled out in your area yet – so not everyone has the chance to take advantage of it. However, the great news is that the NZ government is committed to installing more fibre-fed cabinets throughout the country through the Rural Broadband Initiative.
There are plenty of fibre broadband plan types available, with the most common being Fibre 100 and Fibre+.
Fibre 100 – as the name suggests – is a fibre broadband plan with top speeds of up to 100Mbps. Orcon, MyRepublic, NOW, and Stuff Fibre have the best value Fibre 100 broadband plans. Slingshot, 2degrees, Vodafone, and Nova Energy also offer this type of plan.
Fibre+ simply means a fibre broadband plan with speeds faster than 100Mbps. The fastest top speeds of this plan is 900Mbps. MyRepublic, Orcon, Slingshot, 2degrees, and Vodafone are the top providers that offer this type of broadband plan in New Zealand.
As more and more Kiwis are living an on-the-go lifestyle, wireless broadband is becoming more popular. Wired broadband has been the standard in New Zealand for a while now, as it’s a faster and more stable connection. However, wireless internet technology has also been consistently improving across the country.
Even in rural areas, where getting a reception was a struggle, Kiwis can now access wireless services. As it still relies on signals, the connection may not be as fast and reliable – but it’s more than enough for keeping in touch with your friends and family, and streaming music and some TV shows.
The most common wireless broadband types currently on offer are mobile broadband and satellite broadband.
Mobile broadband enables your mobile phone to connect to the web. Generally, you’ll be connected via high-speed 4G cell towers across the country. In some urban districts, you may also get ultra-fast 5G signals. The download speeds of mobile broadband can reach up to 36Mbps, while upload speeds can reach up to 10Mbps.
Satellite broadband is mostly utilised in rural areas where there isn’t an established wired network. You can get its signals almost everywhere in New Zealand, but only a few ISPs offer this type of broadband plan. Unlike mobile broadband, this connection is much slower with 10Mbps download speeds and 5Mbps upload speeds.
While these are your options across NZ, it’s still advisable to get fibre broadband whenever possible. Fibre offers the fastest and most reliable speeds, and great value prices too.
To check if fibre is available in your area, use our broadband comparison tool at CompareBear.
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