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4 posts

Wannabe Geek

  Reply # 1847247 15-Aug-2017 19:30
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Yep, and it sounds like my anecdotal experiences are far from representative!





Given it is not a competition can we get back to the point in the original post.


Unless you live in Foxton you can't really give the guy the answer he requires.


Both Spark and VF offer similar services and have similar 4G coverage. Some of the lower priced plans require you to pay a fee for accessing your voice mail, others don't.  Best to read the small print for that. Depending on your budget you might want to consider 2 degrees, Warehouse Mobile, or Skinny as these all provide other pricing options.







Thanks for the understanding. I was hoping for this to be an opinion of the two networks and not the usual "bitching". Had that with Vader Vault, Genesis Customs Saber and "Saferforge". Im a Nerd not a geek ( see Mayim Bialik, Grok nation and "Are you a Geek or a Nerd") and therefore I'm more uncomfortable with people (and increasing over time but I feel safer and comfortable with it) and would prefer to ask the internet people than "Live" people. My concerns with switching is that I don't want to sacrifice the reception I have but I do like the Free Spotify premium and the possibility of having a better service. As to checking the small print before getting into anything, my sim is not tied to a contract so I can leave whenever I wish. Coming from Australia I took for granted the service for mobile phones: $30/calendar month (Not 28 days), 3Gig data, Unlimited texting (Including pictures and anything the iPhone does) and I cant remember how much the calls were (I never used it all and it included international). But with home broadband thats where Australia was a Chocolate Tea Cup. It was so poor and they don't understand about fibre optic (they're logic and understanding is just a joke). 




I live in Feilding (Not sure where Foxton came from) and the nearest Sparks shop is in Palmerston North (Somewhere where I go only if I have to). I will travel there some time soon and consider a change 🤔 Or may be phone them...




Thank you for the help. 🖖🏻

908 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1847332 16-Aug-2017 05:27
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Oh whoops! I'm sorry. I don't know where I got Foxton from. Looking at the maps for VF and spark for Feilding it looks as though VF is covered by 4g but Spark is only covered by 4g 700 extended. So it is really hard to know what your real experience may be. I guess you could always trial a prepaid Sim for a month each, as you say you are not tied to any contract.




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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1847333 16-Aug-2017 05:48
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@Linux seems like you know a bit about Vodafone ;)

My 2c - I am on both Spark (via Skinny Direct) and Vodafone and have done a craptonne of travelling over the last week around NZ. Spark in many cases had usable data where Vodafone didn't. I also find that Spark often "just works".

However until just recently there was no Vodafone coverage out at my parents house (only Spark). I am at the moment getting 5 bars of LTE coverage on Spark where Vodafone is currently stuck on 3G at 3 bars. Both towers are in the same location.

This is my personal preference. If I had to pick between the two it'll be Spark all the way for coverage. Vodafone have come a long way but they still don't beat Spark for coverage in many many places. There has however been a few (but not as many) ocassions where there was Vodafone coverage but no Spark coverage.

Having a handset that does not support all of the band 28 700Mhz 4G (restricted) would cause the handset not to get 4G in many locations on VodafoneNZ so not really a fare comparison


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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1847365 16-Aug-2017 08:23
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Its "Spark", not "Sparks", pedantic I know, but it makes me cringe every time I see you post it.




I work a bit in Feilding, and Spark's 4G (band 28 700mhz) coverage its pretty good, however voice calls don't go over 4G so its fairly common to have a voice call drop because 3G is lacklustre.


I'm not so sure about Vodafone. I had one of their 3G RBI connections in Feilding about 6 months ago, and it would drop fairly often too.


I.e. They both had 'bad' 3G coverage.





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Biddle Corp

  Reply # 1847366 16-Aug-2017 08:25
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Having a handset that does not support all of the band 28 700Mhz 4G (restricted) would cause the handset not to get 4G in many locations on VodafoneNZ so not really a fare comparison



Is there a list anywhere of handsets that don't have full band 28 support? I know it's an issue most people won't be aware of.



375 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1847665 16-Aug-2017 16:39
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To the OP:


It will only cost you $5 to try the Spark (or 2 Degrees) network for your self if you care to buy a prepaid SIM and give it a whirl. It is the only way you will get a concrete answer, and you'll be confident that what ever you decide will be the right decision for you. The fact is that the company that has the best service where I work and play may not be the company that gives the best where you work and play.


Since you are new to N.Z. you may not know that there are 3 independent networks you have a choice of.


1) Spark


2) Vodafone


3) 2 Degrees.


Skinny uses the Spark network and Warehouse uses the 2 Degrees network.


2 Degrees has a roaming agreement with Vodafone - where 2 Degrees does not have it's own towers, 2 Degrees customers will roam on the Vodafone 2G and 3G networks but not 4G networks. Where 2 degrees has it's own network their customers are blocked from using the Vodafone network.


Vodafone and 2 Degrees have 2G & 3G in the traditional European bands 900/2100 MHz


Spark does not have 2G and their 3G uses a mixture of US and European bands 850/2100 Mhz, so you need to check you phones compatibility when bringing a phone on or off their network. Typically symptoms of a mismatched phone are that you get OK-ish urban coverage but no rural coverage.


Generally speaking they all use 1800 Mhz as their primary & urban 4G frequency, 700 MHz and a secondary and rural (B28 not B17 if you have a foreign phone), and Spark/Vodafone have a sprinkling of 2300/2600 Mhz urban infill coverage.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1847682 16-Aug-2017 17:07
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B1 2100Mhz LTE is also getting pushed out by VodafoneNZ at quite a quick rate refarming of the 3G 2100Mhz


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