New Zealand telco Spark has announced that half of its broadband user base has moved from copper networks onto newer, ‘future-proofed’ technology platforms such as fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) and fixed-wireless access (FWA) LTE. As per a company press release, 34% of the telco’s 700,000-strong broadband customer base are now connected via fibre, with 16% using LTE-based solutions.
Grant McBeath, interim CEO of Spark Home, Mobile and Business, commented: ‘This marks a critical tipping point for New Zealand households, who see the need for upgraded broadband as things like video streaming move into the mainstream. We are now in a world where households on copper are fast becoming the minority. Two years ago Spark had just 16% of customers on these new technologies. We subsequently set ourselves an ambitious target of upgrading the vast majority of our customers – 85% or more – to wireless or fibre technologies by 2020. Today’s announcement shows we’re well on track to reaching that goal.’
According to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) a total of 1.301 million New Zealand households were passed by the country’s open-access Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) network as of 31 March 2018, with some 550,134 subscribers connected to fibre at that date.