Upload speed: fibre spanks VDSL

TueNet principal John Butt

TrueNet - an independent broadband tester contracted to the Commerce Commission - has released its first comparison of upload speeds.

It's finding: "100Mbit/s fibre is definitely the way to go if you need fast upload speeds," says TrueNet principal John Butt.

ADSL (the copper broadband technology used by most households and businesses) is usually restricted to a sub-1Mbit/s upload speed.

VDSL (the fastest copper broadband technology) can achieve upload speeds of 10Mit/s or faster - putting it on a par with entry-level fibre plans. It's a boon if you want to upload photos or videos, connect to your office via a VPN, or perform full-blooded, two-way cloud computiing.

The downside: unlike fibre, copper bandwidth degrades rapidly with distance. You need to live close the nearest phone exchange or cabinet to get the full VDSL effect (your ISP can tell you if you're close enough).

TrueNet also measured the hybrid fibre-coaxial service offered by Vodafone in parts of Wellington and Chistchurch on the network inherited from TelstraClear. It found Vodafone cable plans upload speeds better than advertised, but "little faster than ADSL" on the cheaper plan, and on a par with VDSL on the more expensive plan.

See TrueNet's full report here.

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13 Comments & Questions

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People who trumpet VDSL as all you need or the way to go are in my view ones who have never used or experienced fibre, or know much about physics.


Like to know where they did their VDSL testing to get those poor results....

We're in Rolleston (Hardly chch CBD) and get rock solid 10s up and 35 down on Telecom home VDSL plan,

Come to think of it - Telecom do a money back 'free revert to ADSL' if they can't get your VDSL connection up to at least 15 down....

I smell porkies here.......


10 up and 35 down is what you will get on UFB in Rolleston unless you stump up more money. 100 up "un-contended" will set you back hundreds per month on business fibre, which is available in selected areas in town. But if you have a business need then it is worth it.

The upload and download speed between you and where you are sending/receiving is governed by the slowest link, which is typically international.


What is your argument? the article stated that VDSL gave 10M upstream. What they are saying is that it isn't available to everyone and claims that it is as good as Fibre are wrong. Granted for most people VDSL is probably sufficient...for now. But as soon as they start pumping HD television etc down the line the only way to go will be fibre.


^^^Totally agree with that, fiber is the only way to go, we need to stop settling for second best and supporting an ancient copper network.


They are still trying to recover the cost of the copper so don't want people using fibre yet. VDSL was one way to keep customers on their copper infra.


the cost of the copper network was well and truly paid for, its 40 years old. the same company's offering VDSL offer fibre too but in many places fibre has yet to be laid to the customers premises so VDSL is a stop gap for them as the cable is already installed. VDSL and ADSL are great technology's for what they are but have nothing on fibre. I have worked with 10Gb/s fiber and its truly amazing. The sooner we finish UFB installs and stop relying on copper the better and more reliable consumer services will be.


The fastest download or upload speeds are governed by the slowest connection. In the real world, vdsl download speed from a US site is the same as fibre. Totally misleading, Where is the download speed / Usage V's cost??.. VDSL wins hands down. Fibre uptake is held back by charges plain and simple. Fibre usage in the US and the UK are miserable failures because of the price gouging.


TrueNet publishes download speed comparisons every month, including international comparisons from the United States.
www.truenet.co.nz to see our monthly report. We also publish a link to it every month on our Facebook page. Facebook.com/truenet.nz


Umm, who needs high upload speeds? Peer-peer illegal file sharing networks?


Anyone one wants to work from home for a start. It's all very well being able to download that large document from the office servers at 30+ MB/s. Now wait for the frustration of trying to save changes to it at 1MB/s.

In short, anyone who wants to interact with the rest of the world instead of passively consuming other peoples work.


Even as little as 5 years ago I would have agreed with you but now there is a significant suite of services that benefit greatly from having a solid upload speed. One example might be a regular home user who is using google drive to sync 10-15gb of photos, a couple of home movies and some music between every device in their home and also to share among a larger set of family and friends. On ADSL the uploading of even a couple of gb on to the cloud can take 15+ hours. I was only moving 2.5gb this weekend and had to leave my PC on all night and most of sunday to get the initial sync done! I dread to think how long it would take for a higher end DSLR user with 10 times the photos and/or higher quality photos than I.


Uploads maybe for Cloud services like google doc's
Believe the distance based reduction of broadband hasnt much to do with physics but is due to the amount of use closer to exchanges.
Network wouldn't work too well without signal boosters.
Despite copper network being old, it does the job.


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