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Topic # 157704 10-Dec-2014 09:25
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From Spark:


Spark said today it will change the price of selected homephone and broadband plans from 1 February 2015, following last week’s Commerce Commission draft decision on the amount that Chorus can charge Spark and other Retail Service Providers (RSPs) for access to the Chorus copper wholesale network.

Last week’s draft decision signalled:

 

  • A $5.40 increase (incl.GST) in the wholesale charges for homephone lines that have been in place for the past two years; and
  • A $4.54 increase (incl. GST) in the broadband lines charges that took effect on 1 December, 2014
Chorus has argued that an increase in charges to Spark and other RSPs must be backdated, and the Commerce Commission has yet to give a view on this matter.

Spark price changes from 1 February, 2015
The price of Spark’s homephone-only plans and the 40GB and 80GB broadband plans (ADSL and VDSL, excluding Ultra Fibre plans) will go up by between $2.50 and $4.25 a month from 1 February 2015.  A summary of key price changes is in the table below. There will be similar increases in the price of business copper broadband plans, with full details available at spark.co.nz/pricechanges   

While these increases will affect lower-end plans, Spark will continue delivering more value to its customers by lowering the price of Unlimited Broadband Data and homephone packages  – also from 1 February.

These price changes affect Spark Home, Mobile and Business services.  Spark Digital will be contacting its medium-to-large business and government customers to discuss any increases for Spark Digital services.

Spark Home, Mobile and Business Chief Executive Chris Quin said: “Over the past two years we have been competing hard in the broadband market on the basis that there would be a $10 reduction in the monthly charge we pay Chorus for providing copper broadband access.

“Market competition has brought great value for customers and the expected wholesale cost reduction for Spark and other ISPs has been built into current broadband prices. For example, Spark’s basic $75 broadband package today would have cost customers $105 two years ago.

“Now it’s indicated that wholesale broadband access charges will go down by almost $5, rather than $10, and homephone access changes will go up by more than $5.  We understand this is how the process works, but we do have to react accordingly.

Mr Quin said the monthly price increases of between $2.50 and $4.25 meant that Spark would only partially recover increases in wholesale charges.

He acknowledged that the Commission’s decision on the new charges was a draft and was unlikely to be finalised until sometime next year.  However, he noted that Chorus was arguing for the new wholesale charges to be backdated.

“Given this negative uncertainty, Spark has no choice but to change its prices now,” Mr Quin said.

“If the Commerce Commission confirms these charges and decides to backdate its final decision, then the price increases we’re announcing today will not  fully cover our increased wholesale costs.  Once we have a clearer view on the final decision on wholesale charges and whether these charges will be backdated, we will review the situation – and we will do the right thing by our customers.”

Unlimited Broadband Data price reduction, traffic management clause removed
Mr Quin said Spark was also taking this opportunity to simplify and streamline its broadband plans – and to continue delivering more value to its customers.  From 1 February, Spark will drop the price of its Unlimited Broadband Data and homephone packages by $10, and remove the sale of the 150GB and 500GB data plans to new customers (since these would be priced on par with or above the Unlimited plan).

“The Unlimited data plans have been a great success and we want to make them even more attractive to customers. As we haven’t yet used traffic management on this plan, and will not be doing so in the near future, we have also decided to remove the traffic management policy from the Unlimited Broadband Data plans,” Mr Quin said.


 





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  Reply # 1192656 10-Dec-2014 09:25
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Dammit - you beat me to it... I was just writing something a little less Marketingspeak for here :-)

Cheers - N

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  Reply # 1192658 10-Dec-2014 09:28
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lower price for unlimited #winning.




 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1192680 10-Dec-2014 09:40
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and Chorus aren't expected to confirm wholesale price increases until April?

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  Reply # 1192687 10-Dec-2014 09:41
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Why the price increase? These things should be going down with all the competition we have...



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  Reply # 1192688 10-Dec-2014 09:43
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  Reply # 1192689 10-Dec-2014 09:44
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Do the government want to increase prices consumers pay?

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  Reply # 1192700 10-Dec-2014 10:01
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So they are doing traffic shaping for unlimited and will now abandon it, or they never were? Notable speed differences between port 563 and 443 to\from the same IPs currently.

Given the somewhat questionable situation around the whole Chorus scenario, the price changes aren't too bad, especially given the recent-ish increases in data allocations and the fact they're now doing unlimited for the same price as 150GB.

A static-IP not being available on the unlimited plan is a bit of an annoyance, not sure if it's worth $10-$20 month more just for that benefit however.




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  Reply # 1192701 10-Dec-2014 10:05
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stevenz: So they are doing traffic shaping for unlimited and will now abandon it, or they never were? Notable speed differences between port 563 and 443 to\from the same IPs currently.[snip]


Never were.

The shaping terms and conditions were there in case everyone decided to download the internet at the same time. Fortunately there are enough RSPs doing unlimited now that the ultra-heavy users are spread enough that it's a feasible plan type now.

Cheers - N



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  Reply # 1192707 10-Dec-2014 10:07
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stevenz: So they are doing traffic shaping for unlimited and will now abandon it, or they never were? 


As per the press release they never did it.






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  Reply # 1194832 10-Dec-2014 12:54
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mattbush: and Chorus aren't expected to confirm wholesale price increases until April?


The Commerce Commission are currently reviewing whether they should backdate the price increase.

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  Reply # 1194856 10-Dec-2014 13:30
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Spark's competitors will surely enjoy using this to their own advantage for as long as they can

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  Reply # 1194907 10-Dec-2014 14:19
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steve98: Spark's competitors will surely enjoy using this to their own advantage for as long as they can


NBR said that Vodafone, and Callplus were also confirming increases (paid article, so haven't read it, but that was implication of tweet), so that is 4 (well could be 5 depending on how you see Vodafone/TelstraClear these days) major brands covered.  Leaves the tiny ones to fight over the rest.

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  Reply # 1195159 10-Dec-2014 19:14
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Just to confirm prices are from 1 Feb next year? So if i change from the 150gb plan to unlimited today ill have to pay the full $119 per month until Feb?

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  Reply # 1195196 10-Dec-2014 20:32
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My understanding was the actual overall price form Chorus has gone down?? So why the increase??





Chorus has spent $1.4 billion on making their xDSL broadband network faster. If your still stuck on ADSL or VDSL, why not spend from $150 on a master filter install to make sure you are getting the most out of your connection?
I install - Naked DSL, DSL Master Splitters, VoIP, data cabling and general computer support for home and small business.
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  Reply # 1195199 10-Dec-2014 20:35
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coffeebaron: My understanding was the actual overall price form Chorus has gone down?? So why the increase??



Because it seems everyone was running at a loss/absorbing extra costs thinking it'd go down more and be backdated is my take.

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