Fibre is short for ‘optical fibre’. Fibre is made up of flexible hair-thin strands of glass which transmit light. This means information can literally travel at the speed of light and the amount of information that can travel is virtually unlimited. It is the fastest and most reliable way to access the Internet.
The Government’s UFB rollout involves laying thousands of kilometres of fibre cables throughout New Zealand.
UFB stands for Ultra-Fast Broadband. The Government is building a UFB infrastructure, rolling it out to 75% of New Zealanders over 10 years.
An Internet connection using the new UFB infrastructure will be faster than normal broadband because it is delivered over fibre.
Why is the Government Rolling Out UFB?
Relative to many other countries New Zealand has poor Internet speed and broadband quality. The UFB rollout has a mandate to provide at least 75% of New Zealanders with access to Internet services at speeds of at least 100Mbps for downloading information (like a movie) and 50Mbps for uploading information (like emailing photos).
Mbps stands for megabits (millions of bits) per second and is a measure of bandwidth (the amount of information that can be carried from one point to another).
Think of bandwidth as a road – if you use dialup, your bandwidth is like a driveway. In comparison, if you use fibre you have a multi-lane highway; much more info can travel at a much faster pace.
The following table provides an example of how your Internet connection speed may differ depending on your connection type.
What Does UFB & Fibre Mean for the Future?
Technology is constantly changing the way we live, work and play. 12 years ago there was no Facebook, YouTube or iTunes. Fibre will enable technologies that we have not yet dreamed about. Remember the talking holograms in movies like Star Trek; some companies believe holographic TVs are only 10 years away. Only with technology like fibre would it be possible to transmit images with that level of detail.