The Internet Group (Ihug) has almost halved the cost of the equipment required for its high-speed wireless StarNet service.
From today, the PC card and satellite dish for StarNet access will cost $399 plus GST, down from $759 plus GST. The cost of the service itself has also been cut, to $69 plus GST per month.
Ihug director Nick Wood says the company is subsidising the cost of the hardware “for a limited time” to attract customers put off by the initial cost of entry which, including a $99 setup fee, ran to around $1000. “We’re taking the extra cost out of our profit to build the market, the same way the set-top box people have in the States - and the same way cellphones have been marketed here,” says Wood.
Meanwhile, at press time Ihug had still not confirmed its joint venture with an Australian company to take a stake in the new Southern Cross fibre-optic cable project. Wood said the company was in dispute over “some contract details” and if these were not settled it would not go ahead.