Survey finds trans Tasman roaming costs prohibitive
The Minister for Communications and Information Technology, Steven Joyce, says four out of five New Zealand businesses surveyed say the costs of data roaming is prohibitive to their staff doing business in Australia.
The Minister has today released the results of a survey from the Ministry of Economic Development which asked New Zealanders and New Zealand businesses how they stay in touch when travelling across the Tasman.
The survey of 534 New Zealanders travelling to Australia was carried out between July 2010 and January 2011 and informed the decision of the New Zealand and Australian governments to conduct a joint investigation into whether regulatory intervention is required in the trans Tasman roaming market.
The limits placed on staff wanting to use their smartphones, tablets and laptops to access the Internet was one of the significant findings.
“I am concerned at the number of business respondents who indicated that, because of the cost, they encourage staff to use data roaming only if they really need to,” said Mr Joyce.
The majority of Kiwi businesses surveyed also encourage staff to minimise calling and texting when in Australia.
Mr Joyce says he is hopeful that improvements in data roaming prices announced by some operators in recent weeks will go some way to alleviating this problem, but that the joint investigation will proceed.
“The results of the survey will provide useful information that will help us determine whether roaming services are competitive.
“I would like to thank the people who took the time to respond.”
The results of the survey are available at www.med.govt.nz/ttr/survey