Providers review online data caps for home computer users

Data limits and the way people use it has become a leading consideration for New Zealand's main internet and mobile users.

Telecom has doubled its data plans for the home as more users change the way they are using their computers at home.

With "on-demand" services for both free-to-air and pay television becoming more popular, Telecom believed it was important to increase the data cap without increasing the cost, Telecom chief marketing officer Jason Paris said.

The most popular home plan - total home life - was increasing its data cap from 10GB to 30GB per month.

Meanwhile, 2degrees has launched a data sharing plan for mobile users which is likely to change the way people use their devices.

Chief executive Eric Hertz said the new service, Shared Data, started from a simple principle - you should get what you pay for.

Mobile data use on the 2degrees network had grown by more than 200% in the last year as more customers used multiple devices to stay connected. But 2degrees also found that nearly three-quarters of New Zealanders had unused data at the end of the month.

Pay monthly customers could now cover up to five mobile devices from one data plan, allocating their data to any smartphone, USB modem or gaming device that used the 2degrees network. Unused data no longer went to waste. he said.

Data could also be shared with any other 2degrees customer - including prepay customers - so that family, friends or colleagues could use the same data quota without needing multiple, complex plans.

The company conducted a nationwide survey which found nearly half of all New Zealanders owned multiple mobile devices which connected to the internet.

However, nearly 75% believed their data plans did not offer good value for money.

The survey also found fewer than half of New Zealanders thought mobile data plans were simple to understand.

"With users spending on mobile data averaging more than $50 a month, the demand for better and fairer mobile data is clear," Mr Hertz said.


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