IT Brief NZ - Need for speed: 100,000th customer signs on for UFB

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Need for speed: 100,000th customer signs on for UFB

The ultrafast broadband rollout has clocked up another milestone, with the 100,000th customer signed up.

Last week the nine-year project, which began in Whangarei in December 2010, hit its halfway mark.

Communications Minister Amy Adams says the signing of the 100,000th customer -  Christchurch outdoor media provider Go Media – is ‘a huge achievement’ and puts the project ahead of international competition.

She cites the example of Singapore, which had very low uptake of just 2% when it hit the halfway mark in its build in late 2010.

In March uptake in New Zealand was 13.8%.

“To have reached this milestone just four-and-a-half after the rollout began highlights the success of the programme and the thirst that New Zealanders have to connect to faster, more reliable internet,” Adams says of the 100,000th connection.

“With around one-in-seven customers in coverage areas now connected, the Government’s uptake expectations have been exceeded.

“I’m delighted to see that UFB connections have grown 10-fold in the last two years to the highest growth rate in the OECD,” Adams says.

Go Media connected to Enable’s network in Christchurch and Adams notes Enable’s network has more than one in three customers connected in some locations, something Adams lauded as ‘a fantastic outcome’.

The UFB build is now complete in 11 towns and cities, while more than 2200 schools have fibre installed and ready for service.

The first stage of the build, due to be completed in 2019, will enable at least 75% of New Zealanders to access fibre to the premise, with stage two expanding that to 80% of the population.

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