TelstraClear increases data caps and lowers usage charges on its cable network

, posted: 28-Mar-2006 09:53

I see that TelstraClear has bumped up data caps and lowered excess usage charges on its cable service in Wellington and Christchurch.

Here are the new plans:

HighSpeed 1G    2 Mb/s  2 Mb/s  1G      *       $2.95 per 250MB
HighSpeed 5G    2 Mb/s  2 Mb/s  5GB    *       $2.95 per 500MB

HighSpeed 10G
   2 Mb/s  2 Mb/s  10GB    $49.95  $2.95 per 1G   
HighSpeed 20G   2 Mb/s  2 Mb/s  20GB    $69.95  $2.95 per 1G   
LightSpeed 40G  10 Mb/s 2 Mb/s  40GB    $99.95  $2.95 per 2G   
LightSpeed 80G  10 Mb/s 2 Mb/s  80GB    $139.95 $2.95 per 2G 

The two first ones are available as part of TCL's home phone line package only, apparently. As for the rest... yeah, nice. I don't know how congested the cable network is, but a 10M/2M plan with either 40 or 80GB allowance would be just dandy. The pricing isn't outrageous either, nor is the "overage" charge.

TelstraClear isn't of course Saturn, the cable network provider they bought some years ago, and has its own very peculiar telco foibles. Like, refusing to peer with rest of the NZ internet, even though Clear Communications, another provider they bought, was a pioneer in that area and helped set up the Auckland Peering Exchange (APE).

Nevertheless, back in 2002 TelstraClear was planning to spend NZ$1.2 billion (yes, one point two billion dollars) on building a fibre network in Auckland. That move came to nothing, mainly due to a concerted campaign by the New Zealand Herald against it. Thick black cables blighting the Auckland skyline! Good grief. As if in-fill housing and a total lack of architectural aesthetics haven't already done so, to a much greater extent.

The Auckland councils bought into the FUD and soon TelstraClear had to ditch the plan, after realising they would never get Resource Management Consent for it. The councils were too afraid of NIMBY voters who didn't know better, and despite calls from organisations like the Telecommunications Users' Association of New Zealand for reason in the debate, that was it.

We could've had first-world network access, competition for phone services and video on demand in the country's biggest city already, in other words. Instead, we have poor, high-priced DSL, with low speeds and low data caps.

I wonder who were really behind the FUD campaign in the Herald?

Other related posts:
The problem with VDSL2, part 2
The problem with VDSL2
The mysterious Dynamic Line Management on VDSL2

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