Need to get internet connection ‘match-fit’ before 2019 world cup

New Zealand All Blacks perform a haka after winning the Rugby World Cup Final, between New Zealand All Blacks and Australia, held at Twickenham Stadium, at the Rugby World Cup 2015, London. File picture

About 60 percent of Gisborne households risk having a disappointing Rugby World Cup viewing experience because they have not upgraded their internet connections, research shows.

Chorus, which has been involved in the Government’s ultra-fast broadband roll-out, is encouraging Gisborne and Wairoa households to ensure they are on the best possible broadband ahead of Rugby World Cup 2019.

Spark has the rights to bring New Zealanders the RWC and will stream all the games online. The matches will not be aired on Sky TV.

With the opening game of the RWC just months away, Chorus is encouraging households to make sure their broadband connections, home networks and streaming devices are all “match-fit”.

“With the majority of matches for this year’s Rugby World Cup only available online, we’re eager to see as many Gisborne and Wairoa families as possible connected to the best possible broadband,” Chorus’ chief customer officer Ed Hyde said.

“We know demand is going to be high for fibre installations in the lead-up to the event and we want to make sure New Zealand’s most ardent supporters don’t miss out.

“Simply put, fibre is the best, most reliable and fastest broadband available.

“It handles online video traffic with ease and its dedicated capacity means it’s made to cope with multiple devices without any loss of quality or buffering — important for families where watching the match isn’t the only online priority.”

Chorus is expecting online viewing of the tournament to result in a significant spike in data use, particularly where matches are not available free-to-air.

To ensure a superb experience, whatever the time of day, the company will be augmenting network capacity to keep the network congestion-free and working with the broadband providers to help their preparations.

A Chorus spokesman said the Gisborne fibre build was now finished, along with the broadband installation in Makaraka as part of the UFB2 work programme.

However, fibre uptake in Gisborne was only at 40 percent — “well behind the national average of 51 percent”.

The fibre build in Wairoa was completed two weeks ago, so no uptake figures were available.

As part of raising awareness about being on the best available broadband, Chorus has launched a fibre installation tracking tool.

The tool, available on the Chorus homepage, tracks the number of fibre installations likely available in Chorus areas until the opening game of the tournament on September 20.

The number of available installations, which reduces at the rate of approximately one every three minutes, is based on Chorus’ average completion rate of 3400 fibre installations each week.

For areas currently without fibre, fast VDSL broadband is available throughout the region on Chorus’ copper network.

Chorus has made it easier for people to work with their broadband provider to upgrade to VDSL. If VDSL is available at an address, Chorus may be able to carry out the upgrade without a technician needing to visit.

VDSL was a great alternative to where fibre was not an option, the spokesman said.

Internet provider Spark pointed out most people would be able to enjoy coverage without a fibre connection.

"You do need a decent broadband connection to watch streaming services like Spark Sport – but this can be any kind of broadband technology (fibre, copper or wireless broadband)," a spokeswoman said.

"The general rule of thumb is that if you can watch streamed content (such as a YouTube video or Lightbox) on the device that you want to watch Spark Sport on during peak hours (8-9pm in the evening), and are happy with the viewing experience, you should be ok to watch the Rugby World Cup.

"If you want to watch Spark Sport on a Smart TV, we recommend a minimum download speed of 15Mbps. If you want to watch Spark Sport directly on a mobile or tablet, we recommend a minimum download speed of 6Mbps. You might be able to stream with a slower connection than this, but the quality of the image will be diminished.

"The vast majority of New Zealanders have a broadband connection that will allow them to stream the Rugby World Cup.

"There will be a small minority of customers (across all broadband providers) who won’t have good enough broadband to watch Spark Sport – and they should contact their internet service provider to see if there are any options to improve their broadband. If they are in this bucket and fibre is available, we would certainly encourage them to upgrade."

About 60 percent of Gisborne households risk having a disappointing Rugby World Cup viewing experience because they have not upgraded their internet connections, research shows.

Chorus, which has been involved in the Government’s ultra-fast broadband roll-out, is encouraging Gisborne and Wairoa households to ensure they are on the best possible broadband ahead of Rugby World Cup 2019.

Spark has the rights to bring New Zealanders the RWC and will stream all the games online. The matches will not be aired on Sky TV.

With the opening game of the RWC just months away, Chorus is encouraging households to make sure their broadband connections, home networks and streaming devices are all “match-fit”.

“With the majority of matches for this year’s Rugby World Cup only available online, we’re eager to see as many Gisborne and Wairoa families as possible connected to the best possible broadband,” Chorus’ chief customer officer Ed Hyde said.

“We know demand is going to be high for fibre installations in the lead-up to the event and we want to make sure New Zealand’s most ardent supporters don’t miss out.

“Simply put, fibre is the best, most reliable and fastest broadband available.

“It handles online video traffic with ease and its dedicated capacity means it’s made to cope with multiple devices without any loss of quality or buffering — important for families where watching the match isn’t the only online priority.”

Chorus is expecting online viewing of the tournament to result in a significant spike in data use, particularly where matches are not available free-to-air.

To ensure a superb experience, whatever the time of day, the company will be augmenting network capacity to keep the network congestion-free and working with the broadband providers to help their preparations.

A Chorus spokesman said the Gisborne fibre build was now finished, along with the broadband installation in Makaraka as part of the UFB2 work programme.

However, fibre uptake in Gisborne was only at 40 percent — “well behind the national average of 51 percent”.

The fibre build in Wairoa was completed two weeks ago, so no uptake figures were available.

As part of raising awareness about being on the best available broadband, Chorus has launched a fibre installation tracking tool.

The tool, available on the Chorus homepage, tracks the number of fibre installations likely available in Chorus areas until the opening game of the tournament on September 20.

The number of available installations, which reduces at the rate of approximately one every three minutes, is based on Chorus’ average completion rate of 3400 fibre installations each week.

For areas currently without fibre, fast VDSL broadband is available throughout the region on Chorus’ copper network.

Chorus has made it easier for people to work with their broadband provider to upgrade to VDSL. If VDSL is available at an address, Chorus may be able to carry out the upgrade without a technician needing to visit.

VDSL was a great alternative to where fibre was not an option, the spokesman said.

Internet provider Spark pointed out most people would be able to enjoy coverage without a fibre connection.

"You do need a decent broadband connection to watch streaming services like Spark Sport – but this can be any kind of broadband technology (fibre, copper or wireless broadband)," a spokeswoman said.

"The general rule of thumb is that if you can watch streamed content (such as a YouTube video or Lightbox) on the device that you want to watch Spark Sport on during peak hours (8-9pm in the evening), and are happy with the viewing experience, you should be ok to watch the Rugby World Cup.

"If you want to watch Spark Sport on a Smart TV, we recommend a minimum download speed of 15Mbps. If you want to watch Spark Sport directly on a mobile or tablet, we recommend a minimum download speed of 6Mbps. You might be able to stream with a slower connection than this, but the quality of the image will be diminished.

"The vast majority of New Zealanders have a broadband connection that will allow them to stream the Rugby World Cup.

"There will be a small minority of customers (across all broadband providers) who won’t have good enough broadband to watch Spark Sport – and they should contact their internet service provider to see if there are any options to improve their broadband. If they are in this bucket and fibre is available, we would certainly encourage them to upgrade."

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