New Zealand ISP Market: Q1 2015

The graphic below provides an estimate of the state of New Zealand’s Internet Service Provider market as at Q1 2015. Public information from Statistics New Zealand (Stats) and the Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC) was used to speculate on the market share of all but the smallest providers. Notes on the methodology follow the graphic.

*** Note 19 Feb 2015 – Update: Added Vocus (Maxnet), Solarix. Changed Velocity to VelocityNet ***


Stats published their latest annual ISP Survey in October 2014. It covers 1.98 million Internet connections from 85 Internet Service Providers, and characterises ISPs by size bands. Additional data requested by Telco2 cited mean and median subscriber count for all but the largest ISP size band.

APNIC has served over 57 million google ads to the world to help determine the penetration of IPv6. The advertisements have special code that connects to APNIC servers and reports number of technical parameters, and test results include the client’s Autonomous System Name (ASN).

To provide a ranking and market estimate, I normalised APNIC’s data set and recoded a number of data points to take into account recent mergers and acquisitions. I then determined market share using ISP survey data from Statistics, and classified providers into bands. Spot checks of mean subscriber totals per band as reported by Statistics against APNIC’s data indicate a good degree of correlation.

11 thoughts on “New Zealand ISP Market: Q1 2015

  1. Why not split out Orcon and Slingshot, not only are they remaining separate marketing teams, but also remain with different networks.
    The two sub-ISPs of BigPipe and Flip are also missing and also effectively have different marketing and networks


  2. I understand Slingshot customers presently reside on the “Callplus” network (AS9790) and eventually the Orcon customers will end up on the same AS with Orcon’s existing network (AS17746) going away.

    Same goes for Vodafone and the old TelstraClear.

    Does anyone know how old those APNIC samples are or is it a rolling 30 day data set (data collected 30+ days ago being discarded) ?


    • Hi Jesse, I manually merged data to take into account mergers & acquisitions and will continue to, as we stop seeing traffic on some of the old ASNs. The data set goes back four years, so samples are biased towards operators who have been around the whole time. I will adjust my next estimate to take into account new entrants. I have a feeling MyRepublic and a few of the rural WISPs will get a bump.


  3. Last year I reported numbers ( using data pulled from the Commerce Commission monitoring report (

    There’s a huge difference between Spark (Telecom) on 49 percent market share at the Commerce Commission and 41 percent here. What do you put that down to?


    • Hi Bill. There are a few things going on. The ComCom’s April 2014 report covers 2013. It also cites 1.32 million connections, which is 600k less than Stats New Zealand reports (see their ISP survey). Additionally the numbers I’ve used break out some significant users like universities and very large businesses. I have excluded those users from my data, though next time I have a go at it I will use ASN path to assign these large systems to upstream carriers. In many cases it’ll be Spark who is the upstream carrier. It’s likely Spark’s share is somewhere splitting the difference between the two figures.


  4. How is it that 2Degrees are reported to have 0.26% market share? That equates to around 5,000 subscribers. they definitely don’t offer any fixed line services though.
    Is it possible it’s counting 2D corporate IP range as an ‘ISP’ i.e. when their staff browse a website from their office, it will show as 2D being the provider? (that number would still be high though)


    • Great question. I think this is users who are tethering their laptops to their phones or wireless hotspots. My guess as to why the number is so small is that almost no one tethers full-time.


      • ah, so this is based on fixed browser usage (from the gogle adwords numbers?) Would the share estimates therefore be skewed towards ISPs that have users that simply use the internet more?
        i.e. spark probably has a load of old biddy customers who use the internet very rarely, vs, say, Snap who’s customers will be much higher net users. Would this skew spark’s share downwards vs Snap’s?


  5. Your chart triggered few discussions here, as it shows few dramatic changes.

    Maybe I’m missing something, can you explain further, as far as Statistics NZ does not provide any break up by ISP except a total numbers, and Google IPV6 information only indicates availability of IPV6 and it is small sample of ~4K for NZ . A network having an AS number or allocated IP address block by APNIC does not means they are definitely using it for their subscribers. Also Vector for example is not a retailer and 2deg are only mobile, even if tethered laptops, the will be likely NATed



    • Hi Ahmad,

      1.) Statistics provided me additional data beyond what was published in the ISP report
      2.) I did not use Google IPv6 information, I used APNIC data, and there were more than 60k samples.
      3.) Vector Fibre has been a retailer for some years now
      4.) It doesn’t matter if addresses are NATTed, the amount of traffic from an AS represents a user count, not a count of held or advertised IP blocks.


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