Whanganui already a ‘gigatown’

Press Release – Wanganui District Council

Mayor Annette Main and the Whanganui Digital Leaders Forum have congratulated Dunedin on its win in the Chorus #Gigatown competition.Media release – 28 November 2014

Whanganui already a ‘gigatown’

Mayor Annette Main and the Whanganui Digital Leaders Forum have congratulated Dunedin on its win in the Chorus #Gigatown competition.

The competition, run by telecommunications company Chorus, encouraged New Zealand towns to boost their community’s understanding of how ultrafast broadband works, through a series of challenges involving social media and quizzes.

Chorus will give Dunedin residents the chance to access 1 gigabit (a billion bits per second) of ultrafast broadband speed for the price of entry level broadband, as well as $700,000 worth of ultrafast broadband initiatives.

Mayor Main said Whanganui was not eligible to enter the Chorus #Gigatown competition because our ultrafast broadband network is being built by Ultrafast Fibre, not by Chorus.

However, she said Whanganui didn’t need to wait to be named a ‘gigatown’ because Ultrafast Fibre’s network already has the capacity to offer 1 gigabit speeds to retail service providers.

“I congratulate Dunedin on their achievement and I know the city will benefit from the publicity as well as the prizes from Chorus. I am sure that if we had been able to participate, we would have done very well in the competition. We have been steadily working toward 100% connectivity for all our community and 94 per cent of our network has already been built with the remainder to be completed early next year.

“The availability of the 1 gigabit is the future and it will be interesting to see the range of services and projects that can develop with this kind of speed.

“It is fantastic that Whanganui and now Dunedin are at the forefront when it comes to having the infrastructure for 1 gigabit, but as a nation that wants to improve our position in the OECD we also need to address our international connectivity. A high capacity, open access international cable would make this country an even more desirable place to invest and do business.

“Because our district is New Zealand’s only finalist in the Intelligent Community Forum’s Smart21 awards, we know the benefits that the digital revolution brings for the whole country and we are regularly assisting other communities around New Zealand who are also looking to develop strong digital strategies.”

For more information about what is happening in the digital arena, follow the Whanganui Digital Leaders Forum on Facebook (facebook.com/WhanganuiDLF) or Twitter @WhanganuiDLF.

ENDS

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