Decision due on Chorus Boost HD pricing in September

TOM PULLAR-STRECKER
Last updated 05:00 28/06/2014

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Chorus will find out by September whether it will be able to charge extra for a new range of improved copper broadband products.

The wholesale services, announced in May, could help the company close a "$1 billion-funding gap" that the company has warned would open up if the Commerce Commission confirmed cuts to standard copper network access pricing this year and next.

Chorus plans to offer internet providers a copper broadband service with more reliable speeds, called Boost HD, that would guarantee customers would be able to watch an HD video stream without disruption at peak times.

Wholesale pricing would initially be the same as its existing copper broadband service, at $44.98 a month with a phone line included. However, Chorus has not promised it would lower the price to match, if the competition watchdog confirmed cuts to its standard pricing.

The commission yesterday said it expected to issue a draft decision in August on whether Chorus would be allowed to charge a premium, and would make a final decision in September.

The watchdog noted it last had to make a similar ruling in 2010, when it ruled against Telecom being allowed to charge internet providers a premium for the latest, fastest variant of copper broadband, VDSL2.

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