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Hard and Fast

Back to the future - now here's a thought

By Antonios Karantze, in , posted: 20-Nov-2006 19:55

A few years ago Saturn Communications got pole access rights to string up cable around Auckland, but after having seen the outcry from Wellington and Christchurch residents - who hated the sight of the HFC cable on the poles - Auckland Council made a choice to not allow cable to be strung up.

A kick in the teeth for Saturn, a win for Telecom, and too bad for all those Aucklanders who were'nt quite so precious about the view from their bedroom.

Mind you, back in 2001 (when this decision was made) broadband barely existed, so most people wouldn't have known what they were missing out on.

Roll on 2006, and the great broadband debacle of NZ - also known as Full Speed, Unleashed or whatever else is next - and I wonder if Auckland residents are ready to revisit the choice of 5 years ago.After all, if the government can look at their 2003 decision to not unbundle, then change their mind, why not the Auckland councils?

Of course, this is the consultative age now, where every man and his dog can object to anybody doing anything (goodness only knows what will happen here if the equivalent of the British ASBO - Anti-Social Behavioural Order - is introduced), so it will take people power to get anything done.

Auckland is a tough market. A lot of the territory is volcanic, which makes it expensive to dig and hide wiring. It's also dense, meaning lots of people in a small area all wanting good service (which is a contributing factor to why DSL is so slow compared to rest of country).

So revisit the choice. With the benefit of hindsight. In light of new information. Having considered the alternatives. And it doesn't have to be TelstraClear (which now owns Saturn) - what about VodaHug, Callplus, Vector or anyone else?

If Auckland residents want decent broadband, then approach your telco, approach your council, organise and let your thoughts be known!

- November 2006

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antoniosk's profile

Antonios Karantze
New Zealand

I'm a born and bred Wellingtonian, and have chosen IT and Telecommunications as my industry, as a Commercial Manager.

Credits include but are not limited to:
- The O2 Xda smartphone range, and O2's range of 3G Mobile Internet services
- Numerous TelstraClear Mobile and IP voice products

In my journey through the industry I have worked at
- Bellsouth NZ
- Telecom NZ
- ICO Global
- T-Mobile International (formerly One2One Communications)
- O2 Plc
- TelstraClear
- Vodafone NZ

I'm a fan of technology, and what it can do for people and business... and I enjoy bringing new things to market and seeing them grow. Enjoy the blog, take the time to think about what I write - it's not technology heavy, and is my reflection on life and the people around me.