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The great New Zealand telecommunications battle

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Posted by humphreybc
Vodafone vs Telecom - The great New Zealand telecommunications battle

As all New Zealander's should know, Vodafone and Telecom are two, and the only two, rival cellphone companies in New Zealand.

Everyone will also remember back to the early 21st century, when $10 txt was announced by Telecom and started destroying Vodafone. Everyone can remember their friends slowly trading in their 021's for 027 phones so they can have 500 txts per month for a mere $10.00. Whereas, on Vodafone, at 20c per text, 500 txts would cost you $100!

Now, in 2007, we have things such as boost mobile, a branch of telecom, with great deals such as 2000 txts a month for only $10!

Unlike the rest of the world, txting in NZ is far superior over making phone calls due to the relative expensive price of phone calls compared to txting. In countries overseas, it is much easier and more cost effective to just ring your friends to chat. But because NZ is behind the world in all forms of telecommunications, we do not have the liberty and ease to do such a thing.

Many have wondered, including myself, why Vodafone as such a large international company, do not bring out a similar competitive plan to truly combat the overwhelming $10 txt plan. The simple answer is that New Zealand doesn't mean a thing to Vodafone international and they don't see the need to waste resources on such a small economy such as ours.

Why can't Vodafone at least lower the price of txts to any network to 10c?

What will happen in the future? Telecom is using old technology, whereas Vodafone are moving forward with the rest of the world offering 3G and better phones.

These are the types of questions I would like to discuss with fellow New Zealand esato users.

So, go ahead. Discuss. What do you think will happen in the future? Do we need a third cellphone network to lower prices?

edit: Topic renamed at the request of carkitter
[ This Message was edited by: masseur on 2009-05-12 09:54 ]

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
@humphreybc Nice thread! Some real arguments could start here, but I guess thats what you want! I am guessing most NZ people will be pro-vodafone when it comes to the Vodafone vs Telecom debate here on esato!

I completely agree with you, I have been a loyal Vodafone customer for about 6 years, only buying a Telecom as a (very limited use) back-up text phone last year. As soon as I find the majority of my friends are on Vodafone, I will drop my Telecom in an instant. I have always wondered where Vodafone's deal rivalling $10 text got to though...

What about the news that Telecom is upgrading its network in the next few years? Does this mean that we will be able to use GSM phones on Telecom? Will NZVF phones be locked to the Vodafone network and telecoms locked to the Telecom network? I think its going to get exciting!

BTW: Its good to see a fellow Chch esatonian! I'm glad I'm not the only one!

[ This Message was edited by: Oh-li on 2007-11-05 04:35 ]

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
It seems to have gone dead on the New Zealanders on Esato front...

Posted by humphreybc
All good points!


Posted by soane28
yeah telecom are going to bring in a gsm network, apparently mid next year sometime. So that means we will be able to get the great plans from telecom such as 10 dollar text but have decent phones.

Although i reckon telecom will lock us into their network and put bad branding all over the phone like vodafone does (hate network branding!)

But if you did parallel importing and got urself a generic phone (like i always have done due to my branding hate) would that mean you could switch between networks? It wouldnt have any locks cos it wont be a nz phone as such?

Will be interesting to know what vodafone will come up with to keep their customers from jumping ship to telecom.

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Yeah thats what i'm hoping will happen. I think theres going to be some sort of customer war between the two company.

Hopefully this means better deals!

I think i'm always going to be slightly anti-telecom though.

Posted by carkitter
I may be showing my age but I remember before Vodafone arrived, only Bellsouth were competing with TelecomNZ. Vodafone had the resources though to build a decent digital network and bought out Bellsouth to get a head start.

I got my first mobile, an analogue Ericsson DH618 on the Telecom 025 network in 1998. A mate of mine who worked for Telecom in telemarketing told me that if I signed up to a 24 month / 200 minute nights and weekends plan I'd get the phone for free! It was a good deal so I went for it.

Over time though, all my friends went to Vodafone because of this new -fangled text messaging thing ; my phone wasn't txt capable and neither was the 025 analogue network.

By 2000 when my plan expired, I couldn't wait to drop Telecom. I vowed I would never be caught out again with the wrong technology, and under Vodafone I haven't.

Telecom however, decided to update the 025 network to the 027 CDMA digital network against expert advice and spent the next few years denigrating Vodafone's GSM system. They've now got thier come-uppance with CDMA being exposed for the white elephant it always was dropped CDMA products early on, Nokia more recently, and Telstra Australia started building a GSM network leaving TelecomNZ no choice but to do likewise.

Seven years on and TelecomNZ still haven't learnt thier lesson.

VodafoneNZ don't do a $10 txt prepay plan because they're smart. They don't need to.
$10 txt is a sign of desperation on Telecom's part. Vodafone do TXT2000 which encourages people to ditch Telecom altogether.

TelecomNZ are stuck between a rock and a hard place. They have very few decent phones, a lack of Nokia models for business users, and are falling behind in technology such as HSDPA downloads, Mobile TV, etc. They need a GSM network and compatible phones and they need it now! And they know it!

I laugh every time they refer to thier new upcoming network as WCDMA and not GSM. It's all about saving face....

I disagree with comments about calls being prohibitivly expensive in NZ. I reckon call plans and Mobile Data plans ARE competitive here (at least on Vodafone). Plans will get cheaper still when Telecom get on equal terms with Vodafone - technology wise.

Posted by Muhammad-Oli

Nice post. it was interesting to hear your opinion (and quite funny considering you sound rather anti-Telecom as I am). So are you saying that WCDMA, as they call it, is really just GSM under a different name? If it is, then I am going to have a good laugh, because it really does make it obvious that Telecom are trying to hide their (HUGE) mistakes.

I was one of very few of my friends who did not make the switch to Telecom when they rolled out $10 TXT. This was in the middle of my high-school days and I am now just finished my second year at university. I was so against it because I have more technology knowledge than any one of my friends, and I could see at a glance how poor Telecom's phone line-up was and how behind in terms of design and features they were and still very much are. I have always liked Vodafone's approach to marketing but I always wondered about whether a rival deal to $10 TXT was coming. I guess not. But I am noticing a number of people making the switch back to red.

Every time I hear of Telecom releasing a new phone or something going wrong with CDMA, I have a bit of a laugh. For example, recently I heard (I think here on Esato) that Nokia had stopped developing CDMA phones. Which means all of Telecom's Nokia line-up are now run-out models. Any that are released now are likely to be ones Nokia are trying to get rid of. I laughed at that.

I did buy a Telecom phone, just to keep up with my Telecom friends, and because my girlfriend has both and her Vodafone phone died. When I first tried Telecom's service, I was appalled at the quality. There is no way to send a text for your balance, you have to make a call. And on this call, you will encounter the Telecom woman. She sounds like a complete b****. For example, I top up $10, she says "Ten. Dollars. Has been added to ya phone" ...This to me sounds very unprofessional and crappy.

Anyway, thats my rant.

Posted by carkitter
I've heard a few explanations for Telecom's 027 CDMA decision. The favourite one is "anti - Vodafone arrogance", but it's obvious that they take the cheap option and upgrade (thier network) only when necessary. This is in constrast to Vodafone who charge ahead, rolling out the latest network technology asap. Finally there is the "Telecom's major shareholders are American and Americans use CDMA" reason which I must say holds alot of water; when I was installing Nokia Carkit 126 for Telecoms business customers using Nokia 2286 there was controvercy over the lack of external antenna. TelecomNZ and thier hardware supplier were unaware that the Antenna Coupler which worked with the CK-126 and Vodafone-spec Nokia phones wouldn't physically fit the Telecom-spec Nokia models. After further investigation Telecom had to admit they'd got the 2286 from the US where CDMA reception doesn't need an external antenna. Doh! A case of some manager somewhere making a decision based on on-paper info and not checking with someone in the front line!

Have you seen that just recently Telecom have released a TXT2000 type prepay deal? Proves who was right doesn't it...

Edit: GSM means Global Standard for Mobile. Any phone that uses a SIM card is a GSM phone. CDMA uses an ESN (Electronic Serial Number).

With GSM, your phone account (Prepay or On-Account) is attached to your SIM card which you can move from phone to phone. With CDMA, your account is attached to your phone ESN and Telecom need to be notified if you want to switch phones. Most GSM and all CDMA mobile technology is developed and licenced by a US based company and thier latest GSM High-speed internet (HSDPA) network technology is known as WCDMA or Wideband CDMA. Telecom's product range will eventually be SIM card based just like Vodafone. Watch an see how they attempt to explain thier policy backflip in a positive manner. Should be fun.

When Telecom had no BT compatible phones, my mate said that it was a good thing as BT was a security risk for business customers.
The truth was they just couldn't get any decent specced phones on CDMA!
I V8 Supercars

New Zealand - Hosts of the 2011 Rugby World Cup

[ This Message was edited by: carkitter on 2007-11-26 23:31 ]

[ This Message was edited by: carkitter on 2007-11-26 23:35 ]

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Yeah it should be fun to see what happens to Telecom. I think it will be exciting to see what phones they roll out with the new network! Will they stick to their current brands that make GSM phones also? Like Samsung? Or will we see new Nokias and Sony Ericssons?

On 2007-11-27 00:14:48, carkitter wrote:

When Telecom had no BT compatible phones, my mate said that it was a good thing as BT was a security risk for business customers.
The truth was they just couldn't get any decent specced phones on CDMA!

Ha! I knew that was the reason! I remember reading about it and Telecom's excuse seemed to be that their customers didn't need it. LOL!

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Some pretty funny stuff happening in the latest MyMobile magazine:

They warn people that buying a current telecom phone may not be a great idea, as they are launching a new network next year. Annoying thing is that they say it nicely as if Telecom never screwed up and its the greatest thing ever.

It pisses me off how this magazine is so pro-telecom sometimes though. I guess they are trying to be unbiased, but because they feel like they had better be nice to Telecom, they overdo it a bit... Hahaha. Anyway, they are all over the OKTA Touch (A crappy looking iPhone copy also known as the HTC Touch elsewhere i believe.) God it looks terrible. But I counted 22(!!!!) images of the phone in the single (very small) magazine. I think they are being paid out!

Then they have a smart-phone feature where they fail to even mention any SEs. Oh well. SE needs to do some marketing here.

Heres a quote that made me laugh...

From David Craig, Telecom's general manager of Consumer Marketing on the new OKTA Touch:

"Most New Zealanders won't have seen anything like this before - from listening to music to checking a Facebook page, it's now all possible on the move with this device"

Yeah, right, anyone on Vodafone has been able to do that for a few years now. And it ain't at all new to most New Zealanders. Oh and from what I've seen, Facebook ain't all that popular here either.

In the magazine there is also a "How to" on getting Telecom sports updates. Suddenly I have realised that I've never seen a "How to" for any Vodafone features in this magazine. Hilarious, this magazine is biased! And I've been buying it since it began (and was more Voda orientated lol)!

Actually I have just thought: Maybe its because the Voda service is so good, it doesn't need an explanation! Yeah that must be it.

Anyways, Telecom sucks.

Posted by carkitter

MyMobile Magazine is not biased. It's just that the take a non-confrontational viewpoint of the industry. Other magazines have taken a similar view in the past such as the AA Directions magazine. Thier roadtests during the eighties and ninties were laughable! When the Automobile Association restructured itself as a Finance and Insurance company, Directions became a lifestyle magazine. In truth very little changed.

I've been concerned for sometime about the way MM is soft on Telecom and Vodafone. Teresa Gattung once said that 'all Telco's lie to thier customers'. MM just helps to keep the coverup in place... the recent 'review' of the Gold coloured Moto KRZR should have been labelled an advertorial. But I guess they need do something for MotorolaNZ after getting tickets to the celebrity-packed New Zealand launch of the RAZR Mk2.

I'd like to see pressure applied to the networks to release sales figures for individual models and how about testing the SAR to see if manufacturers are being honest. And decent explanations on why models like the W900 and K810 were'nt released here!

MM certainly won't bite the hand that feeds it though.

p.s. did you know that I wrote two articles featured in MyMobile in 2005? And provided info for thier spec list?

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Wow thats very cool! I might have read your reviews! What ones did you write?

Yeah, their specs sheet used to be great, but they really need to update it now. I mean, all but 2 or 3 phones on the NZ market have speakerphone now and almost every phone can download ringtones and games. I no longer think they are something that we need telling. Also, some of their info is misleading or wrong. Are you by any chance still able to contact the editor or anything to put forward a few suggestions?

Posted by carkitter
I've been thinking about that for a while now. The Carkit spec sheet I wrote for them needs updating to include A2DP and GPS functionality while the external antenna category could be dropped.

And you're right the phone spec sheet need updating too. I'd like to see A2DP and Wifi listed; and WAP, Ringtones and MMS dropped. And some of the info is wrong such as K800i listed as having no proprietary Carkit - it uses the HCA-60 and it compatible with BT carkits too.

The Editor I dealt with was David McNickel, but the current editor is Rob Bridgman. Rob published a photo I sent in response to an open request by former acting editor Vicki Bland, other than that I've had no contact with MM since 2005.

The address to email MyMobile is printed inside the front cover. Anything I send them will have to wait 'til my laptop is fixed. I have a replacement keyboard on it's way courtesy of trademe.

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Ah, so still using the library computers?

I think thats great that you had your efforts published in a nationwide magazine! I might contact them myself and possibly even offer to make changes for them, although I believe you would be better for the job with your knowledge of carkits, etc.

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Anyone eles getting thoroughly irritated by those Telecom ads???

That rabbit... I don't know how it has survived. If I was Telecom staff member, I would have taken it and burnt it by now. That voice... Aaaagh!

And that Terry... Oh I could go on for ages. I really hate those ads!

Vodafone on the other hand...

Posted by stunned
I have just moved to NZ from SA and am sorry to say that I am stunned at how primitive the Vodaphone network is here, especially when it comes to data usage for something as light on data as Opera Mini. On top of that, the company's business franchise system is a flop, with rude franchisees who do not honour any business ethic. The company could not care about customers and overcharges radically for data. I bought a simcard in Christchurch and only discovered in another town that it did not work, and took it to a Vodaphone shop. They washed their hands on my problem and said I had to courier the pack back to the shop I had bought it from. I asked them why the data was so expensive, and their answer was that they are the only show in town and can charge what they like. Shame! I hope that crappy attitude will one day translate into a loss of market share. In SA (where data is dear) the most expensive data on prepay costs about R2 per Mbyte, equivalent to about 33 NZ cents. The equivalent NZ cost is $10 per Mbyte, almost 30 times more. No wonder no-one in NZ uses data. How can these guys ever hope to make money out of heir network? On top of that, their servers seem to be wrongly set up. You barely use a few kilobytes on Opera Mini, and the next thing your phone has gone down by $20. What a ripoff! They also seem to short-change customers in terms of call centre services and use a very primitive SMS system for onine balances etc. Any competitors ready to take these clowns on? In this day and age they could more than make their money back by selling affordable data and texting!

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Welcome to NZ mate! I'm afraid that's just how it is. Telecom is even more primitive, so we have to stick with Vodafone. I don't think there will be a new player in NZ for a long time because its a small country and both our operators have around 50/50 market share, so to take either of them on is quite a task.

Telecom is being forced to change to the sim card system very soon (next few years) and so maybe when that happens we will see some more competitive rates. I definitely agree that Vodafone rips its customers off for data, though I think it can be cheapened by going on a plan if you're interested in doing so!

Posted by stunned
Nah! I feel too burned. As much as I view mobiles as a magic technology, I think I will just do what everyone else does. Use broadband at home and just use my phone as an emergency device only. No point in giving these guys any more of my money. At least with the bestmates system I can stay in contact with my wife and kids without breaking the bank.

I just hope someone at Vodaphone goes and reads the IBM Redbook on i-mode. (The semi-walled garden). The point is that the success of i-mode in Japan had absolutely nothing to do with a technological model. It was all due to a revolutionary business model, and was achieved almost by accident despite a really crappy network ...

What happened there was that the engineers were faced with a network that was falling apart. They resolved to figure out how to redirect most of their customers to data usage rather than voice usage, as data is less demanding to a network than voice.

Their plan had simle rules.
1. No sites were allowed to have advertising.
2. No porn - not even at a third remove
3. Cumulative services had to be cheap and could not cost a customer more than say the price of a fashion magazine per month.

Hey presto ... within months they had created a legendary internet network and achieved their goal of shunting the bulk of their customers to data usage rather than voice, thereby giving their crumbling network a new life - and at the same time creating a cultural phenomenon that US and European business experts (inclding the guys at Vodaphone in the UK) are still trying to emulate, mostly without success.

The problem is that they all miss the point. I-mode is not a technological model . It is a business model. Based on simple business rules. Sell for cheap and you get lots of customers ...

Posted by Muhammad-Oli

On 2008-02-16 11:05:29, stunned wrote:
Nah! I feel too burned. As much as I view mobiles as a magic technology, I think I will just do what everyone else does. Use broadband at home and just use my phone as an emergency device only. No point in giving these guys any more of my money. At least with the bestmates system I can stay in contact with my wife and kids without breaking the bank.

Yeah thats what I do too. I just don't really find the need for using the internet when I'm out and about, I just use it while I relax at home. And I think that most of NZ prefers it that way, or they are just too ignorant to realise that theres such thing as internet on a mobile phone! I use BestMate for texting an calling my girlfriend, and TXT2000 for texting my mates and my family.

A few years ago, Telecom started the $10 text deal, and this resulted in a huge wave of people selling up their Vodafone phones and switching to Telecom. Nobody cared that it is a shit network with terrible phones and out of date technology, all that mattered was that it is cheap! I think Vodafone needs to do this, because if they do, hell, they could easily have 100% market share in my opinion.

Posted by carkitter

I've been trying to use Vodafone data instead of Telecom's crappy Xtra broadband for more than 2 years and only managed it last year when Vodafone finally got thier act together with some good pricing plans; it still needs to get cheaper though, and faster and better coverage. I'm fortunate to be in a 3G area, many people are'nt.

And the franchisee thing is getting out of hand. In Aucklands North Shore its Digital Mobile vs First Mobile and 'God help you' if you bought from one and want service from the other.

And genuine accessories don't exist here despite huge range of innovative high quality products. Even the Sony Style stores have to order from the Head Orifice because they don't stock anything.

Posted by Muhammad-Oli

On 2008-02-16 14:44:59, carkitter wrote:
And genuine accessories don't exist here despite huge range of innovative high quality products. Even the Sony Style stores have to order from the Head Orifice because they don't stock anything.

And even their head office isn't up to date. They stock few accessories and at high prices.

I wanted an FM transmitter a while back and went into my Sony Style store in Christchurch to see what they could do. They could sell me the older version (the 60 model) for $90! I wanted the 70 model for a lot cheaper than that (maybe around $50). What's more, it was going to take at least a week to get it in! I gave up and bought one to plug into my MP3 player instead.

Sony Style down here in Chch only seems to stock very expensive accessories like some $400 speakers and a $600 watch, and they only have them in because they are too expensive to sell!

Posted by carkitter
Excellent NZ Herald article on Mobile Data here:


Looks like Telsta Australia will go from a useless CDMA network to a whopping 42 - 100 Mbps HSDPA (GSM) network in no time flat. I betcha Telecom will be trying to do likewise and catch VodafoneNZ unawares.

I'm not blowing my own trumpet when I say that I knew 2 years ago that Mobile Data will eventually outpace Landline connections, that's why I've been trying to ditch my landline since 2006. Its obvious that NZ's copper wire network and the infamous 'distance to local exchange' would be a hinderance to development and prohibitively expensive to replace. In fact some of it will never be cost-effective to replace.

Can't wait to see 's 100 Mbps HSDPA offerings!

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Lol Telecom won't be able to overtake Vodafone, as Vodafone will be upgrading at the same time probably. They may be able to match each other, but I don't see Telecom overtaking, especially with little experience with GSM networks.

Posted by JiSm
I worked for Telecom for 6 years before cummin to UK (to work for Orange) and Telecom has always been primarily Business focused. The CDMA network was viewed as the premium world network due to its data handling abilities. I remember doing a speed test on a Sierra Wireless Aircard and had download speeds of 3 MEG! (I was right next to a Telecom repeater tho) but man, it was fast. It was just after the rollout of EV-DO and mobile data had no competition. In Telecoms vision, the entire country wanted to be completely wireless and speed was the limitation (again, talking business) hence the decision for CDMA (apart from the fact it was cheaper to upgrade the TDMA network with "plug and Play" upgrades to the cell sites). The decision to install a GSM network is purely to fit in with the world I guess. Roaming had always been an issue as 80% of countries dont have a CDMA network and a loan phone and loan number were always required. Things like $10 txt etc were perfect for residential usage and also benefited Telecom because CDMA allowed this to work at no charge to the network - Pure profit. I would think that when the Telecom GSM network is launched, there will be no more $10 txt because of the sheer cost of the messages.


Oh well, I will be bringing back a few GSM goodies from here when I come back

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Ooh what kind of goodies?

Posted by JiSm
Haha. The X1 will be out so might pick up a few with my "Buying abilities" I have with Orange

Still, The X1 jumped out from nowhere so who knows what might pop out just before I leave.

Will be nice! haha

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Yeah bring a few X1s back, you'll probably get top dollars for them, because it will be ages before we see it properly (through VF) here!

Posted by carkitter
This NZ Herald article mentions Telecom having HSDPA of 14.4Mbps in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch by November. I knew they'd try to leap frog Vodafone! It'll be interesting to see Vodafone NZ's response.

The article also says Vodafone will use 900Mhz 3G in rural areas to fulfill it's Govt obligations for rural broadband coverage.

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Wwooow! Thats fast! Lets hope Vodafone have a plan in place to be able to throw it all back into Telecom's face!

Posted by carkitter
High speed data of that sort can't backfire unless the Network can't provide what the marketing people make out it can: remember the GoLarge debarcle?

One thing I'm wondering is whether HSDPA devices like the W910i, V640i and the PC300 are limited to amaximum of 3.6Mbps or can cope with the Network maximum?

The Title of this thread may have to change soon. NZ Communications launch is getting closer - maybe.

Posted by carkitter
With Telecom under pressure ATM, I think its time to revive this thread.

Fund's move stuns investors

5:00AM Tuesday August 12, 2008
By John Drinnan

Aggressive US-based hedge fund Elliott stunned Telecom investors yesterday, nominating new directors as it presses for another radical overhaul of the company.

Telecom chairman Wayne Boyd now has a fight on his hands as he faces a powerful but relatively small shareholder fomenting unrest. Elliott holds just 3 per cent but has a fearsome global reputation as an investor activist. It has until Telecom's annual meeting on October 2 to try to build support. Elliott's Hong Kong based portfolio manager, James Smith, said yesterday the company was acting alone.

"There is not a wider concerted offer behind what we have put together today - so far," he said.

Telecom shares take a 9% hit
Audio available on this page, 4mins 45s long, very interesting assessment of the market at present.

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Yeah I heard them talking about this on the radio about half an hour to an hour ago. It sounds really interesting, but I don't quite understand it.

A company that holds a 3% stake in Telecom thinks they can come in and force a change of management? How would that work and what is the point of doing so?

I'm sure I've missed something, so does somebody want to explain?

Posted by carkitter
Well.... Elliot has a small shareholding but they are well respected. They want Telecom to split into two parts - a Wholesale provider and a Retailer of communication services. Elliot would then prefer the Retail side to be sold off with the profits going to shareholders. Three percent of Telecom would have cost alot (the share price has sunk significantly over the last couple of years meaning no-one wants to sell at a loss) and Elliot is no doubt looking for some return on investment considering Telecom's current restructing won't bring returns until perhaps 2011. Telecom's retail division is bleeding money ATM as it slashes prices (read: profits) trying to keep mobile customers from jumping ship to Vodafone before November and facing tough competition from Orcon and Vodafone in the internet market. I can see why Elliot wants to jettison it!

Telecom's board has rejected this proposal and has instead decided to split into three divisions all of which will remain in the group. Shareholders are expected to basically leave thier investment alone and trust the Board will steer Telecom back to the good-times of pre Government Interference in the Communications market when Telecom could get away with making the rules. Elliot want some say by adding two independent's to the board.

Posted by carkitter
And more bad news from Telecom; it seems that the bad decisions and misinformation will continue as they combine minimal HSDPA with mostly GPRS on GSM850 band creating more incompatibility between them and Vodafone. You'll need a Quad band device (like V640i) to switch between the two networks and the V640i which has HSDPA on the 2100 frequency alone will only manage GPRS speeds on the HSDPA 850 network. Ironically, only the iPhone is optimised for both networks and we all know what that's priced like don't we... Yes, Telecom is still in CDMA mentality following the US 850Mhz line of thinking.

Read it and weep: source...


* NZ Communications says Vodafone and Telecom are delaying its plans to enter the mobile market.
* Vodafone has upped the ante by announcing a $500 million expansion plan.
* Telecom is rethinking its plans for a rollout of its new 3G Network.
* If Telecom changes tack it could cause a big increase in its substantial capital expenditure.

Expanded mobile market hits snags

5:00AM Tuesday August 19, 2008
By John Drinnan

Mobile phone users face delays for better deals as NZ Communications sets back plans for a third network and Telecom reviews its new 3G network.

The Minister of Communications, David Cunliffe, has called Vodafone and Telecom to account amid concerns the third mobile network would not be up and running at electiontime.

Newcomer NZ Communications is understood to have told Cunliffe the two phone giants were preventing it from having access to their towers and the launch for its third network had been moved from the end of this year to late 2009.

Cunliffe could not be reached for comment. [He's probably watching his credibility dissolve and revising his pre-election conference speeches about Labour's Telecommunications achievements in office - carkitter]

But a source close to the minister confirmed he was "very concerned" that NZ Communications should be up and running this year.

Meanwhile, with Vodafone ramping up its new WCDMA 3G network, Telecom is reviewing its plans.

The launch of its new network had been expected in November - in time for Christmas handset sales.

But Telecom has revealed that it will be limited to a "soft launch" aimed at overseas visitors and income from "roaming" - customers using their phones overseas.

Forsyth Barr telecommunications analyst Guy Hallwright said Telecom needed to improve its share of mobile revenue, in particular from roaming.

Telecom already has a 3G network that has limited use because of the limited number of handsets in the CDMA technology.

The new network would remove an impediment to roaming revenue from business customers.

The Telecommunications Users Association of New Zealand said the delays were worrying. New Zealand was running out of time to prevent a mobile phone duopoly turning into a Vodafone monopoly.

TUANZ's Ernie Newman said that with Vodafone holding 53 per cent of the mobile market the situation might not appear dire.

But because of Vodafone's head-start in 3G, it was able to earn two-thirds of its revenue from mobile.

Vodafone and Telecom insist they are not trying to prevent new competition by denying access to their locations.

Vodafone says it built transmission towers to meet the Resource Management Act (RMA) and there is no room for NZ Communications unless the company goes through the long process for RMA approval to increase its towers.

But Newman said the RMA claims were "a red herring" from Vodafone.

"NZ Communications should have been up and running a long time ago.

"There is no doubt New Zealanders are playing far too much because of the lack of a third player."

He said Telecom was paying the price of bad technology decisions for mobile. Telecom has to decide whether to stick with its costly plans to try and catch up with Vodafone by using a mixture of 3G and slightly slower technology outside main centres, or spend even more to avoid falling behind.

Telecom has never spelled out timing for its network and insists there are no delays.

Vodafone upping the ante in competing comes down to a use of frequencies.

Both Vodafone and Telecom are using 2100 MHz frequency, which reaches 56 per cent of its customers with a 3G service.

But Vodafone last month revealed that it would be spending $500 million extending its own 3G network using its 900 MHz frequency, which has a wider reach.

Now Telecom has to decide whether it to wants to continue with its plans using slightly slower speeds outside main centres, or expand use of its 850 MHz to match Vodafone.

Voted Best Phone Review Esato Awards 2008!

[ This Message was edited by: carkitter on 2008-08-20 05:23 ]

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
All I have to say is what a bunch of idiots! Why do Telecom think the US of A have it right all the time? hey haven't! They've got it all wrong! Go look at Europe for a good example of a mobile network, not America! Oh wait, I forgot, Telecom sucks.

Posted by yea g

On 2008-08-20 06:30:45, Muhammad-Oli wrote:
Oh wait, I forgot, Telecom sucks.

Everyone knows that

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Not everyone though! You're at school right? You must see a lot of people with their sh*t Sanyo Telecom phones. All the teenage girls that got sucked in by $10 text...

Posted by yea g
no everyone at my school is sony ericsson or nokia but i don;t really know too much about wot fones they use in the girls school

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Oh right, you go to an all boys school? What city do you live in?

Posted by yea g

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
I just came across this:


How crap is that?! $400/month for only text and voice calls, plus they're going to stick the stupid fair usage thing on it? That's ridiculous! That amount of money on prepay would get me all the texts and calls I could ever want for at least a year!

Not everyone earns more than $1.75 million per year, Mr Telecom CEO.

Posted by carkitter
Hmph! Looks badly thought out to me.
1) They can't afford to lose the revenue that high users spend.
2) They obviously didn't learn a thing from the Go Large debarcle.

I'd say die Telecom, die! if it wasn't for the fact that Vodafone as an unchallenged monopoly would be worse still than where we are now.

Posted by yea g
maybe change the title to the not so great new zealand telecommunications battle

Posted by carkitter
Looks like TelstraClear are going to win the race to become the third mobile network in NZ. They are releasing a deal that's being touted by over excited media tosser's as creating a price war in the mobile market. Yeah right...

Here's their deal
It's basically adding a cheap mobile plan when you switch your landline and broadband over to TelstraClear that's all and the $3.00 per MB for Casual Data bites! Plus you need to sign up for 2 yrs and the Nokia 6275i they give you is not new or inspiring and is a CDMA phone so who cares?

Ho hum, Vodafone won't be particularly worried by this deal.
Typical of our dumb media to fall hook line and sinker for slick marketing and spin.

Posted by yea g
hopefully b&w will be gsm otherwise new zealands mobile network will be f..ed

Check out the new (well not really new anymore but you get the picture)design of the Esato New Zealanders thread

[ This Message was edited by: yea g on 2008-08-31 04:02 ]

Posted by carkitter
Well, there are network owners and there are VMNOs.
Virtual Mobile Network Operators are companies that have an agreement to use another company's network infrastucture.

TelstraClear are a VMNO using Telecom's infrastucture.
Black & White are a VMNO using Vodafone's infrastucture.

It looks to me like TC are dipping their toe in the water. They'll need alot more than this to make an impact in the mobile market.

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Yeah and Black & White will offer SE phones too, according to the SE website when you try to send settings over the air to your phone. It has Vodafone and Black & White as your two options.

Posted by yea g
yep thats how I found out about black and white (well that and a google search)

Posted by Muhammad-Oli
Yeah, that SE over the air settings thing doesn't work. Its crap.

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