Tuesday, 29 November 2016 11:22

Spark, Chorus combine to spread fibre further in NZ

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New Zealand’s largest telco Spark and telecommunications infrastructure provider Chorus are to pilot a process aimed at making it easier for homeowners to install fibre for their broadband service.

The so-called “street in a week” initiative involves upgrading all Spark customers in the same street who want Spark fibre broadband, in just one week – with customers able to select a specific day within that week for their fibre installation.

The trial will take place in Whakatane in the week commencing 12 December and will offer up to 400 households with Spark copper broadband the opportunity to be upgraded to fibre in a shortened timeframe.

The trial follows a similar pilot recently between Spark and Ultrafast Fibre to upgrade customers in Hamilton.

According to Spark, nationwide, more than 28% of New Zealanders who have fibre laid in their street have so far chosen to upgrade from copper, and the two companies say they are making it easier for more New Zealanders to sign up for fibre.

According to Spark, the current process for laying fibre usually involves three site visits, for two of which the customer needs to be at home, typically on different days.

But, the telco says that by concentrating teams and resources within a small geographic area for the week of the trial, Chorus will be able to deliver an accelerated installation process as teams work collaboratively – and the customer should only need to be at home for a day.

“Chorus is responsible for around 70% of the UFB roll out, supplying fibre to areas where hundreds of thousands of our customers live. We have a great opportunity here, to collaborate with them and learn more about ways of making it easier for our customers to get ultra-fast fibre into our customers’ homes,” says Jason Paris, chief executive of Spark Home, Mobile and Business,

Tim Harris, Chorus chief commercial officer, says Chorus is “open to working with all other retail service providers in a similar manner, to explore options and learnings that could increase efficiency and further improve the installation experience for customers, as the industry continues to build on the enormous success of ultra fast fibre”.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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