Copper versus Fibre

Copper or Fibre?

When fibre cable has been laid in your street, you will have the choice between copper and fibre, but beyond keeping up with the Jones’s what are the real benefits of this new technology?


Considered the next generation of broadband, fibre is the internationally favoured broadband connection that uses fibre optic cable. This cable houses hundreds of strands of fibre to transport large amounts of data. The new fibre network we are building delivers broadband speeds up to 20 times faster than the copper network. Fibre performance also doesn’t degrade over distance, so no matter how near or far you are from the exchange, the speed is consistent.


The original broadband network, this uses the copper phone lines already in place for most homes and business across the country, which means availability to most of New Zealand. While readily available, its performance is affected by a number of factors.


Where copper speeds vary from 2Mbps to over 20Mbps depending on your distance from the cabinet or exchange, fibre speeds start from 30Mbps and can hit 1,000Mbps if you’re located in GigCity Dunedin. The importance of speed will depend on how you use the Internet. If email and web browsing is the extent of your use, then basic copper services will be adequate.

If you, and others, at your home or business want to do more online like streaming videos, downloading and uploading large files, video conference calls, gaming and using content rich websites, you’ll need faster speeds over fibre for a quality experience with little or no buffering.


The capacity of your broadband connection depends on how many people are using it at the same time and your connection’s ability to handle this. When you have a fibre plan of 100Mbps, multiple people using devices can be watching, listening, playing, posting, working and chatting without any loss of quality or buffering.