In New Zealand and in most countries around the world, if you live out in the country you’ll generally have a problem getting good broadband. Accessing the Internet when you need to has become part of everyday life. Some people even operate their business over the Internet and anytime they do not have access to the worldwide web, they are losing money.
Because of this, and many other reasons, several countries have begun putting together a rural broadband initiative. Governments are putting more public funds into expanding rural broadband to people that live outside populated areas. A good example of this is what New Zealand is doing.
According to the Ministry of Economic Development, the rural broadband initiative will deliver services to more than 252,000 households. Instead of the slower dial-up services available, rural households will have broadband speeds of 5Mbps or faster. The purpose of the initiative is to improve Internet access to people that live in the countryside.
New Zealand is not the only country providing funds to accomplish this. The United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and other developed countries have begun rural broadband initiatives to keep up with the ever-growing need for fast reliable internet.
Rural Broadband Initiative Benefits
New Zealand would benefit greatly from increased rural broadband due to the large proportion of our countries exports coming from agriculture. Faster internet services would mean better lines of communication between farmers and their international markets enabling better buying and selling decisions. Because so much of countries exports depend on agriculture, a rural broadband initiative to expand faster Internet service to these communities would increase revenue and profits to this industry. Hence, increasing the government’s revenue.
Healthcare, education and entrepreneurship will also benefit from a rural broadband initiative in any country. Education can be expanded to include cross-country communications. Healthcare would benefit from easier access to patients medical records. And, finally, more entrepreneurs could start businesses from anywhere around the country.
New Zealand’s Rural Broadband Initiative
Not all countries have a rural broadband initiative in place and we’re lucky that New Zealand is working closely with telecommunications providers to start rural broadband services later this year. New Zealand has a roll-out schedule that informs communities when broadband services can be expected in their area. Find out more about the initiative by heading to the government website.
Dr. Eric Cornelison has been writing technology articles for 20+ years and continues to advocate technology in the most remote parts of the world. This article was written in conjunction with Woosh, a rural broadband provider in New Zealand.