kingdragonfly: I'm not familiar with Auckland, but Google is showing a two hour commute from Waiheke Island.
Depends where in Auckland you work.
If you are central, then commute from home to work would be about 70 minutes. 10-15 minutes home on Waiheke to ferry (assume you drive, add another 15 minutes if you catch a bus on Waiheke). 40 minutes on ferry, 10-15 to walk to work from ferry buildings. Repeat in reverse on the way home.
(I live on Waiheke, I leave home at 0625, bus to ferry, ferry to town 0700-0740, drive to work using my own car which I keep in the Downtown car park, at my desk in the Wairau Park area on the shore just after 0800).
I noticed lots of cars seemingly living in the downtown park when I leased in there and wondered why!
It is a very easy commute though - no waiting in traffic, and no stress. You can read a book, catch up on work, have a wine, play cards etc.
Yes, a wine on the way to work is highly recommended! If only the ferries were a little slower, you could run out a lure and catch some kahawai to smoke up for tea.
Not saying it is for everyone, but it is an option (and you'd probably get more capital gain out of a house there than a city apartment).
Agree with others too - look south or west, and train to work.