New Zealand can anticipate significant economic and social benefits from the sub-1GHz radio spectrum becoming available from 2013. This spectrum, known as the ‘digital dividend’, is to be freed through digitisation of broadcast television. It is well suited for cost-effective and widespread deployment of mobile broadband services, delivering better coverage in rural and urban areas with fewer sites than required with higher frequency spectrum. The availability of this new spectrum is timely as global demand for wireless broadband access will experience explosive growth over the period 2011–2015, driven by the rapid increase in devices such as smartphones and tablets.
InternetNZ commissioned Network Strategies to develop a report outlining the issues and options for achieving an optimum outcome from the Digital Dividend: Planning for New Uses of the 700 MHz band work being done by the Ministry of Economic Development.