Residential internet users’ “growing appetite for speed” has encouraged TelstraClear to re-release a 100 Mbit/s down/10 Mbit/s up service over cable that it first trialled in the residential market 18 months ago.
“In 2010 we trialled 100Mbps broadband for cable-connected residential customers and it worked extremely well, and some of those people are still connected at that speed,” says CEO Allan Freeth. “We decided to postpone the commercial launch as there was little market for it at the time. In the last few years, things have changed and the appetite for speed is now there so we now offer next generation WarpSpeed broadband to residential customers.” The price for the service starts at $115.95 per month for 100Gb of data. TelstraClear says the 100 Mbit/s speed is equal to the fastest that will be provided under the government-backed ultra-fast broadband (UFB) project. The user base for the service as at last week numbered two – trial customers who have had the service since the 2010 launch - but it has now been released to all cable users. The cable service is available in Wellington, Kapiti and Christchurch. One of these customers, Geekzone’s Mauricio Freitas, says the service has been reliable and offers good speed for bulk downloads, providing the user has good infrastructure and is dealing with a local server; He can download a movie in 10-15 minutes, as opposed to about an hour, providing it is hosted at the local node of a service such as Akamai. A download manager capable of running multiple streams will help make full use of the link’s capacity, he says. Even file backup, at 10 Mbit/s, is a considerable improvement on the 2-3 Mbit/s usually possible, Freitas says. He predicts TelstraClear will get good custom for the service from small businesses that commonly download and upload large files. For routine web-surfing – particularly if it involves overseas sites, he says the user will see no difference compared with the cable speeds previously available from TelstraClear. Some of TelstraClear’s business users are already getting 50-100 Mbit/s, but only over fibre, says spokesman Gary Bowering. In a separate development today, Orcon announced three new broadband plans – including one with a 1000GB per month data cap.
The new plans, which will be available from Monday, cost $89 for 60GB, $99 for 200GB and $199 for 1000GB a month.