More New Zealand households, businesses have Ultra Fast Broadband coverage

The latest Quarterly Connectivity Report shows more than 90,000 New Zealand households and businesses gained access to Ultra Fast Broadband (UFB) in the three months from April to June this year.

That’s an increase in UFB coverage equivalent to a city the size of Wellington and brings the total number of households and businesses able to connect to UFB to nearly 1.58 million, the Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister Kris Faafoi said in a statement on Tuesday.

“With 110 UFB cities and towns now complete, the build is now 85 percent finished and still ahead of schedule,” Faafoi said, adding on completion of the program in 2022, there will be over 1.8 million homes and businesses in New Zealand with access to UFB.

In the latest quarter, there were 55,336 new connections to UFB, lifting overall uptake to 52 percent, statistics showed.

“There are also an impressive number of towns with uptake over 60 percent,” Faafoi said.

Broadband coverage in rural areas has also increased. There are now approximately 38,000 households and businesses in hard to reach regions of New Zealand which now have access to improved broadband, the minister said.

“Rural New Zealand needs better and more widespread mobile coverage to support rural business growth, the farming and tourism sectors and rural safety,” he said, adding the government works to close the digital divide to ensure all New Zealanders have connectivity.

There are now 26 tourism sites and 238km of state highway which have improved coverage from all three mobile operators, he said.