New Zealand’s Commerce Commission has released its latest annual monitoring report, covering the twelve months to 30 June 2014, showing that the retail broadband sector saw subscriptions rise 5.3% year-on-year to 1.39 million, while the average data use per connection climbed from 26GB to 32GB. Although fixed line minutes dropped from 8.98 billion minutes in 2012/13 to 8.26 billion a year later, mobile usage rose from 4.77 billion minutes to a record 5.3 billion over the same period. Meanwhile, total revenue from retail telecoms services dropped to NZD5.17 billion (USD3.66 billion) in 2013/14, from NZD5.21 billion the year before. The average fixed broadband speed rose to 7.3Mbps, from 5.3Mbps a year earlier.
Separately, Vodafone New Zealand has announced plans to expand its 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) mobile network to a further 20 rural markets this year as part of the government-backed Rural Broadband Initiative. Vodafone has until now been concentrating on expanding rural coverage using 3G wireless technology, but now plans to use 700MHz LTE equipment to provide connectivity at up to 30Mbps for users in certain communities.