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498 posts

Ultimate Geek
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Topic # 27322 22-Oct-2008 07:37
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Hi All

I'm a kiwi who's been living in London for over 6 years and returning home next year.

High speed broadband is bog standard here and dialup or anything below 2mb lines are virtually unheard of.
For the last 4 years I have been on a 8Mbps fully uncapped,unlimited connection and I was downloading around 100GB per month give or take.
The ISPs never seem to care how much you use the line and I was hammering it for years.

We have now moved to a virgin media tv package that comes with 20Mbps fibre optic broadband and is unlimited (downloaded 35GB in the last 2 days).

Anyway now you have the background are their providers back in NZ similar to this?
From the reading I have done the internet and mobile phone call plans seem very restrictive compared to the UK!

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 172702 22-Oct-2008 09:56
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Are you sure you were on 8Mb/s 4 years ago?

My memory is a litle fuzzy, but when I left the UK 4 years ago 8Mb/s speeds were very rare, if available at all, for most consumers.

I seem to remember most plans were 256k or 512k with a few 1Mb and 2Mb plans.


Trying to find something on the web that gives speeds from then is pretty hard.  This is all I could find, just a quote from an article about cat5 cable in 2004:

http://www.hiddenwires.co.uk/resourcesarticles2004/articles20040802-01.html

"Your home Internet connection, if you're on ADSL, is 512kb/s - a twentieth to a two hundredth of that speed. The fastest is ADSL might be 2Mb/s, and that's still an order of magnitude slower than existing Cat5 wiring can comfortably handle."

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  Reply # 172723 22-Oct-2008 11:08
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Back in NZ you will be able to get fullspeed (whatever speed your line can sync at) ADSL1 or ADSL2+ what speed you sync at depends on your distance from the exchange or cabinet.  Something like 56% of lines are able to get ADSL2+ currently.

First thing to note is sync speed doesn't mean alot if your ISP isn't provisioning enough international bandwidth per user during peak time.

I'm going to generalize a bit and say all ISP's in NZ face the problem of the vast majority of their traffic being international and that international transit is expensive because the Southern Cross Cable is the only major connection between the NZ > AU > US.

Almost every ISP will give you a plan which costs a base amount for the connection, generally they will give you some small base amount of usage most around the 5GB per month.  From there usage is charged at anywhere from $1 per GB and upwards (some ISP's charge $1 some charge $10 per gb some let you buy blocks of data and some let you buy individual gb's).

Only 2 ISP's offer near unlimited usage and only off peak (after 12 before 8am etc) both of these ISP's are oversubscribed and experiencing very poor performance due to lack of traffic management and quality of service.

If you are heading back to Wellington or ChristChurch it's possible you will be able to get Cable via TelstraClear rather than DSL.  If you are coming back to Auckland you might want to consider Wireless via Gasp.

Here's a summary of the options and prices:
http://www.nzconnection.net/Internet_Plan_and_Pricing_Comparisons

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 173112 23-Oct-2008 16:49
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webup: Hi All

I'm a kiwi who's been living in London for over 6 years and returning home next year.

High speed broadband is bog standard here and dialup or anything below 2mb lines are virtually unheard of.
For the last 4 years I have been on a 8Mbps fully uncapped,unlimited connection and I was downloading around 100GB per month give or take.
The ISPs never seem to care how much you use the line and I was hammering it for years.

We have now moved to a virgin media tv package that comes with 20Mbps fibre optic broadband and is unlimited (downloaded 35GB in the last 2 days).

Anyway now you have the background are their providers back in NZ similar to this?
From the reading I have done the internet and mobile phone call plans seem very restrictive compared to the UK!



The biggest thing you will notice is the download limits, quickly followed by price of the plans.

Phone line rental is $42+
Decent broadband is $60+ but data will cost extra
Mobile on account starts at $20 but stuff all txt's and mins each month.

You could and will more than likely be spending anything from $120to $250 a month.

Cheers
db
I am sure 8mb was available 4 years ago in the UK, it did cost a bomb though. I had 2mb in 2003/04 and it was pricey.




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Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 173311 24-Oct-2008 11:30
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This BBC article paints a different picture of broadband in the UK:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7684322.stm

Usage limits seem to be applied in the UK by stealth rather than advertised limits.  Even so, the undisclosed caps in the UK seem to be extremely generous by NZ standards.  So expect a lot more defined, restrictive caps in NZ.

Interesting tidbits from the article:

As a result, uSwitch found that 80% of UK broadband customers either wrongly thought that they had an unlimited broadband package or did not know what their limit was.

Usage levels overall are still relatively low. Data published at the beginning of 2008 by broadband provider TalkTalk showed that half of its customers used less than 1GB (gigabyte) per month.

Virgin Media - unlimited but traffic of heavy users is shaped at busy times


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Master Geek
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  Reply # 174311 29-Oct-2008 09:58
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webup: Hi All

I'm a kiwi who's been living in London for over 6 years and returning home next year.

... brag, brag, brag ...

Anyway now you have the background are their providers back in NZ similar to this?
From the reading I have done the internet and mobile phone call plans seem very restrictive compared to the UK!
NO! I moved back to Chch after 7 years in London in January. It's like a time warp to 5 years ago in the UK.

Data caps and sub-par speeds are the norm. As a former high volume user I did shop around but the datacaps were all too low for my liking. In the end I went with Xnet and pay per megabyte. During peak hours international speeds are less than 2Mbps and it seems to be generally accepted that this is the norm. Be prepared for plenty of buffering on YouTube... National speeds are okay, but is there really that much local content worth browsing? ADSL2+ and LLU is on the uptake so at some stage things should improve... but NZ has a big handicap with the 1 international pipe shared by all the ISPs. Until there's some serious investment, don't expect anything like the performance you've been getting recently.

But then, one doesn't move back to NZ for the high performance technology and salaries... it's a lifestyle choice baby!



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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 174316 29-Oct-2008 10:21
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I left my PC on and downloaded 12GB while I was at work.

Anyway thanks for all the replies, interesting stuff indeed.

Whats the job market like in chch at the mo?

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 174327 29-Oct-2008 11:03
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Whats the job market like in chch at the mo?


I had no problems finding work in the IT sector 9 months ago - I had 2 offers within 2 weeks of looking. Can't say I've been paying attention recently, but there probebly isn't as much available now given the current state of the economy. I know that the company who I turned down laid off about 100 Chch based staff a couple of months ago....

Seek.co.nz and Google were my most useful tools in the search for work.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 174387 29-Oct-2008 16:53
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..

Usage levels overall are still relatively low. Data published at the beginning of 2008 by broadband provider TalkTalk showed that half of its customers used less than 1GB (gigabyte) per month.



If you carry this idea over to the NZ market you can see why Telstra and Telecom can afford surplus peak bandwidth... they have a large number low usage users who are effectively subsidizing the heavy users. 

Xnet and Slingshot with their plans have attracted a large number of leechers and never really had the base of low usage users hence their problems offering the expected performance.

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