Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.

9 posts

Wannabe Geek

#257158 18-Sep-2019 15:58
Send private message

HOPEFULLY this post will be a warning to anyone considering Orcon and especially Orcon's Gigantic Fibre deal ...... AND hopefully some of you more learned folks might be able to answer the couple of QUESTIONS I have.

I set out a week ago to upgrade to Fibre. After doing a bit or research I decided to take a closer look at Spark but then discovered Orcon's Gigantic Fibre offer that includes an offer of free Google Wifi. 

We work from home and so currently have 2 broadband connections from other providers which I'd like to replace - one of whom I've been with for 12 years but they don't offer a reasonable Fibre option - and the current WiFi options offered by both are not cutting it in a 4 bedroom house. All I want is a reasonable deal that WORKS. (Stupid me .... and I thought this was not asking too much???!!!)

So I do take a look at the Orcon offer.... and start my research. A week later and over 6 hours on the phone to both sales and Tech support at Orcon, I am absolutely frustrated at what I've discovered.

First I discover that Orcon wants to provide the NetCom NF18 Modem ... but this product is a terrible option with a reputation for poor WiFi delivery ..... hardly surprising when it is now over 3 years old and does not even have a single antenna with which to improve WiFi delivery. Okay so I'm happy to spend $300+ and get a decent modem. But I want to at least be certain that if I spend that money that it is going to work on Orcon Fibre. (I hope that sounds reasonable)

Next I discover that Orcon does not have a modem upgrade that I can purchase .... but even worse they cannot even tell me what other modems can - or can't, work with the system they are providing. (I don't know if they lack the knowledge, are poorly trained or simply don't care????)

So here is a summary of the other disturbing issues I discovered with the Orcan "Gigantic Fibre" deal they offer, so that it serves as a WARNING to others.

(1) You must use their cheap Netcom NF18 modem otherwise your VOIP telephone connection will no longer work (or so they told me) - and NO, they will not allow or assist you to reprogram your modem OR to use a better modem. In fact there is at least one specific settings they refuse to provide and that relates to the VOIP capabilty.
(2) If unsurprisingly you find that your WiFi coverage is not giving you the coverage or speed it should, this prevents you from replacing it with a better modem - even at your own expense. So without having even some basic information from Orcon you take a huge risk trying to buy a better modem. In fact it's a $300+ gamble .... and looking at TradeMe I discover a bunch of people trying to sell some great modems because they will not work on Orcon Fibre. That gamble gets even more expensive, because after spending that $300, you are then faced with paying another $300 to break the 12 or 24 month supply Agreement that Orcon tries to hook you into ASAP.

(3) With the Gigantic Fibre Agreement, Orcon tells you they will supply you with a free Google WiFi to make this offer look appealing. But what they don't tell you is that they will not deliver the Google WiFi hardware to you till after you are locked into your contract, but of course by then it's too late and you are up for $299 to break your contract - meanwhile you are stuck with a service that does not function to reasonable expectations. When I asked why they won't deliver the Google Wifi hardware under the terms they advertise, the answer is "we want to see some usage going through first". So what sort of offer is that? ... either they say they will supply or they won't. Why promise something and then decide when they want to fulfill their obligations? When asked about this and the reason why, the answer is simply "oh well, that's just management policy ... we don't know how long it will be".....???? So what they are saying is you sign-up and then we'll supply when we feel like it. This is important to me because I would like to prevent weeks of messing around and one of the best ways to do this is to organise several hours at one time in which to complete all of the installation, the modem and the Google Wifi in one go. (I hope that sounds reasonable to you ... but it didn't when I tried to explain that to Orcon.)

(4) BUT WORSE IS STILL TO COME ......Orcon refuses to provide ANY tech support whatsoever for the installation of the Google WiFi they have supposedly supplied you. In other words, YOU take all the risk, Orcon takes none ... but you still pay. Surely you have to wonder about the intentions of any company that provides you with the hardware, but refuses to support the installation of it?" Oh and by the way, they don't disclose this to you in the sale ... you have to go hunt for that information in the small print on their website. Fortunately I believe in doing my research first.

(5) Unless you have any technical expertise you risk committing to a 12 - 24 months contract (and a $300 break payment) but you are given no assistance or assurances that you get any sort of acceptable Wi-Fi coverage. This has to particularly be a worry when the old modem they provide does not even have a single aerial on it, and they cannot provide or sell an upgrade .... or any guidance?

(6) None of this information is disclosed in their online advertising and sales offer ......or in conversations (sales pitches) with 2 different sales staff.

(7) Neither Orcon's Sales or Tech Support staff will provide any explanation whatsoever why the customer is treated in this manner, or what steps you can take to insure your service will work effectively. 

(8) Advertising this offer without providing all of the relevant information disclosed above is tantamount to misrepresentative advertising. 

Fortunately I had sufficient technical expertise to investigate and discover this before it was too late. I feel those that do not have this knowledge. Do not touch Orcon's Gigantic Fibre with a barge-pole ...... and this leaves me disgusted with Orcon as a service provider.

So after providing this WARNING, here's my THREE QUESTIONS

1: Bearing in mind that Vocus also own Orcon, Slingshot, Flip and Talk - can anyone recommend a service provider that can offer a Fibre installation in Auckland with a reasonably effective WiFi coverage for a 4 bed house, is reliable, can provide knowledgeable tech support that is happy to provide constructive advice .... and whose customers do matter to them? Your recommendations would be appreciated.

2: If you've used Orcon for a Fibre installation and had a problen with the limited WiFi capability of the NetCom NF18 Modem and then and bought a better modem which successfuly integrated with Gigantic Fibre without too much hassle, I'd be interested to know which Modem you bought and used, and how much hassle was involved in the installation?

3: If you have purchased Orcon's Gigantic Fibre Plan and received the Google WiFi hardware, I'd be interested to hear about your experience. How long did you have to wait for the Googfle WiFi hardware to arrive from Orcon? Was the installation reasonably effective and straight forward? And did you use another modem or just the cheapie NetCom NF18 that they supplied?

Thanks in advance for all thoughts, comments and answers.



Filter this topic showing only the reply marked as answer View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic
 1 | 2 | 3
6254 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

#2319874 18-Sep-2019 16:03
Send private message

@chordalgain Did not read the complete post as my eyes started to hurt but you want GB connection over Wi-Fi?

9 posts

Wannabe Geek

  #2319879 18-Sep-2019 16:12
Send private message

Hi Linux - thanks for the reply. Sorry for the lengths of my original post but I uncovered so many issues dealing with Orcon I wanted to provide a reasonable and detailed explanation of what I found ... simply because it points to a very low priority on customer service.


To answer your question... yes, ..... one of the 2 other ADSL broadband services we have at the moment has use NF18 modem and is completely inadequate and we need to connect to it by wire ... the whole purpose of this change is to ensure all computers here can get proper WiFi access ... hope that answers your question.






52 posts

Master Geek


  #2319883 18-Sep-2019 16:25
Send private message

Hey @chordalgain,




I'm sorry to hear that you've had such a frustrating time with us.


Let me help clear up a few things.




Firstly, we do only supply an NF18 but they aren't as terrible a modem as you're making them out to be - the Google Wifi will more than make up for any wireless issues you may have had.


There is no need to worry about setting up the Google Wifi, yes we do not help with this but, the box comes with all the instructions you need. I can vouch for how amazing the product is at my 4 bedroom place with 7 residents - no wireless speed issues and it couldn't be simpler to set up.


In regards to modem support, it is a security breach setting up our VoIP connection on a third party modem, which is why we recommend using ours if you'd like a phoneline. If that doesn't matter to you then you are more than welcome to use your own.


However, if you do use a third party modem, we simply can't support this as training an entire Contact Centre on the huge amount of other modems out there isn't logical.


Lastly, the reasoning for sending the Google Wifi out after your connection has been completed is to prevent people trying to game our system, get the product, and leave without ever paying us. They are a high end set of devices so we are careful with when they are sent.




Please do let me know if there was something else I could help clear up or sort out for you with your connection.







4631 posts

Uber Geek

  #2319891 18-Sep-2019 16:51
Send private message

Orcons response seems reasonable. 


Between the modem and google wifi , you're covered. 


And, they only support the official modem to keep your plan cost low. Imagine trying to support every modem on the is just impractical. 


If you really don't like the modem, just go across to 2degrees, who supply the excellent fritzbox. 



9 posts

Wannabe Geek

  #2319895 18-Sep-2019 17:04
Send private message



Thanks so much for the reply. In fact your reply may even save an order that I was in the process of cancelling after having the Chorus Techies here for there first visit yesterday. Look I don't want to seem unreasonable but as the owner of an online business myself I understand how Tech Support can make or break a business and that is why I am actively involved in the Tech Support of my own business so as to ensure we are seen positively.


My comments are largely because we currently use an NF18 on one of the 2 services we have here at present and we have to hard-wire it to 3 computers that should be able to operate on WiFi but cannot. So when I am confronted by another modem the same on what I hope will be a better service, it does not inspire confidence. But if I am happy to go and purchase another modem then it is important that I know what I am going to buy will work. Hope that sounds fair. But after a number of conversation with Orcon, I am none the wiser. So short of being able to find a solution, my only other alternative has appeared to go elsewhere.


I am prepared to sacrifice VOIP if necessary but Orcon does not appear to be able to point me in the right direction of an alternative that I know will work. Maybe I am naive but I hope Orcon would provide access to an upgrade modem even if I needed to purchase it, but it appears that Orcon does not carry any upgrade options? So the risk begins if I purchase it elsewhere without knowing if it will work.


Yes, I hoped the Google WiFi would provide a solution, but I was told it would not be provided with the Modem and I would have to wait an unspecified period of time to receive it which is hopeless if I am trying to reduce installation downtime to just one session rather than multiple sessions. I hope that makes sense.


I don't expect support on a third-party modem ... that would be unreasonable, however I do at least want to know that it will work if I go and purchase it prior to installation time. Hope that sounds reasonable?


I suspected the reasons for not sending out the Google WiFi would be for the reason you explained, however that does not help me. In the application process I know I am checked out to ensure I am a reliable party, so when I passed those checks I expected that this would provide some level of credibility. Similarly if I am prepared to buy a modem upgrade AND spend 6+ hours on the phone to Orcon and arrange Technicians visits I would have again given some level of credibility.


I have no doubts about the Google WiFi capabilities and effectiveness, but if I find that I have purchased a "wrong" upgrade modem that does not work on your Fibre connection, then Google WiFi capability is going to be literally rendered inoperable.


So all I need is the confidence that my selection of modem upgrade is going to be correct, and then we are half way to sorting the problem.


I am happy to explore any suggestions you have as how to remedy this. One question ... You have explained about how Google Wifi works well at your house and the size of your place...... are you using the NF18 with an Orcon Fibre connection? Or are you using another modem?

I appreciate your offer to help me work through this so maybe it can be saved.

9 posts

Wannabe Geek

  #2319896 18-Sep-2019 17:12
Send private message

@surfisup1000 - Thanks for the reply.

Yes I agree with you ... Orcon's response on here in regards to certain issues is reasonable ... hence the reason why I am now trying to identify a solution with his help. I just wish that I had been fortunate enough to speak to him when this "experience" first started. The guts of the issue here is simply knowing which modem to buy that will meet Orcom requirements ... even if it means sacrificing the VOIP capability.

Thanks for the words on 2Degrees ... I have taken a look at the fritzbox during my research and it has certainly received some good reviews.


If I can't sort a solution with MatteGreen on here than I will certainly take a look at that option. Thanks again.

219 posts

Master Geek

  #2319948 18-Sep-2019 17:41
Send private message

I’m on Orcon gigabit fibre and was provided the fritzbox, at one point they sent me a different modem, I think it was a NF18 which I had used previously before they told me I had to switch to fritzbox. It was very odd that they tried to switch me back to a modem they had previously told me to stop using. Also quite odd they aren’t offering you the fritzbox as that’s one of Orcon’s modems.


9 posts

Wannabe Geek

  #2319950 18-Sep-2019 17:54
Send private message



Thanks for the reply. I specifically asked about what other modems they could offer .... even if I had to purchase it, but they told me that there were no other modems they carried or could supply. I discovered the existence of the Fritzbox through my own research but could find no info showing that it have ever been related to - or used by Orcon.

I specifically read about the Fritz Box 7490 - which appeared to have some great reviews - but I could find nothing it linking it to Orcon.


So are you using the NF18 now? ... and how good are you finding it's WiFi capability? .... I have one here on another ADSL service and it's inadequate WiFi coverage and our desire to upgrade to Fibre is what has caused me to look for better.

219 posts

Master Geek

  #2319951 18-Sep-2019 18:01
Send private message

Nope I sent back the other modem they sent, I told them I’m not going back to the previous modem when they had forced the fritzbox on me in the first place. So I’m still using the fritzbox 7490. They definitely had them but possibly have them all assigned so only have the lesser NF18 for new signups? That’s just a guess though.

689 posts

Ultimate Geek

  #2319960 18-Sep-2019 18:31
Send private message

The Google wifi delay aside, I personally think you're being unrealistic.


The level of support you are after is unlikely to ever be offered at this price point. $100/month simply doesn't have the margin in it to get support staff that can cater to your requirements. If you want this level of support you will need to go with a business ISP that can deliver this which will cost significantly more.






Orcon cannot tell you what routers will work as that would leave them liable if they do not work, they would be silly to make any suggestions. I would recommend you talk to a IT person who has networking knowledge, they can advise you as to what routers will work.






Expecting wifi to go everywhere is not realistic, wifi is affected by many things and results will vary from customer to customer. If you want good wifi throughout your house this is again some thing you should talk to a networking technician about (ideally some one who specializes in wifi systems).


Gigabit over wifi is also unlikely to be achieved and due to the sharing nature of wifi you're far better off being wired in.






Again Orcon would be silly to support this on another device. The only realistic way for Orcon to deliver a high level of service is to only support this on their device. If I was them I would not do it any other way. You can easily move away from Orcon to voice if you choose, but keep in mind that setting up VoIP is not always simple.

2415 posts

Uber Geek


  #2320001 18-Sep-2019 21:41
Send private message

The OPs concerns sound perfectly legitimate to me. Who can honestly say they would be happy to receive a partial service/package and be happy with that for an undisclosed period of time until the remainder of the kit shows up.

Someone needs to do some customer journey mapping and really think about service design.

71 posts

Master Geek

  #2320027 18-Sep-2019 22:25
Send private message

We only have orcons 200mb offering and I ended up shutting off the WiFi on the stock router as I wasn't getting good speeds or reliability in our house (stupid internal cabling means awful router placement). I picked up a set of tenda MW6 off Ali express to take over the WiFi duties and it's a significant improvement over the old router that gets us the full 200 down all over the house. I couldn't swap out the orcon router for it so that still sits between the ont and MW6 but I'm happy with the end result, getting a router to replace the standard issue on most rsps is a minefield so this was a safe way to play it that solves all my problems.

4081 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  #2320088 19-Sep-2019 08:45
Send private message



.. giant wall of text..



Despite what you apparently think, ISP's (other than WISP's) are NOT in the business of selling WiFi. They are selling you a fiber connection, WiFi speed/coverage is largely out of their control. ISP supplied routers do an adequate job for most people, if you have advanced needs/wants the onus is on you to either understand the alternatives (or pay someone to do this for you). It's not like Orcon don't have a support article outlining exactly what settings a 3rd part router needs to connect and clearly stating that their phone service only operates via their supplied unit. 


The Google WiFi deal is clearly just a sales incentive, like some other ISP's give you free TV's etc. If you got a free TV would you expect help from your ISP setting it up? 







Information wants to be free. The Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around it.


613 posts

Ultimate Geek

  #2320162 19-Sep-2019 10:32
Send private message

I just want to throw it out there and say I think Orcon provide a quality service from my experiences with them

52 posts

Master Geek


  #2320184 19-Sep-2019 10:54
Send private message

Hey @chordalgain,




I absolutely understand where you are coming from but it sounds as if you need a business solution rather than a residential service given all of your concerns.




We don't offer a high-end modem option as we've configured our NF18 to service all of our connection types, rather than forcing a modem upgrade for changes in technology. The Fritzbox 7490 was our old gigabit option but it is no longer required with the one modem solution. It should work with our services but given it isn't provided by us anymore, I could never guarantee this.




In terms of my place, yes I am using the NF18 with the Google Wifi but I'm not running a business from there.







 1 | 2 | 3
Filter this topic showing only the reply marked as answer View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic

Twitter and LinkedIn »

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:

News »

Samsung Announces 2020 QLED TV Range
Posted 20-May-2020 16:29

D-Link A/NZ launches AI-Powered body temperature measuring system
Posted 20-May-2020 16:22

NortonLifeLock Online Banking Protection now available for New Zealand banks
Posted 20-May-2020 16:14

SD Express delivers new gigabyte speeds for SD memory cards
Posted 20-May-2020 15:00

D-Link A/NZ launches Nuclias cloud managed network solution hosted in Australia
Posted 11-May-2020 17:53

Logitech introduces new video streaming solution for home studios
Posted 11-May-2020 17:48

Next generation Volvo cars to be powered by Luminar LiDAR technology
Posted 7-May-2020 13:56

D-Link A/NZ launches Wi-Fi Certified EasyMesh system
Posted 7-May-2020 13:51

Spark teams up with Microsoft to bring Xbox All Access to New Zealand
Posted 7-May-2020 13:01

Microsoft plans to establish its first datacenter region in New Zealand
Posted 6-May-2020 11:35

Genesis School-gen has joined forces with Mind Lab Kids
Posted 1-May-2020 12:53

Malwarebytes expands into privacy with fast, frictionless VPN
Posted 30-Apr-2020 16:06

Kordia to donate TV airtime on Channel 200 to community groups
Posted 30-Apr-2020 16:00

OPPO A91 is a high specs mid-range smartphone
Posted 23-Apr-2020 16:44

NordVPN rolling out NordLynx new generation VPN protocol based on WireGuard
Posted 23-Apr-2020 16:37

Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.

Support Geekzone »

Our community of supporters help make Geekzone possible. Click the button below to join them.

Support Geezone on PressPatron

Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.