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Free WiFi hotspots for Kiwi holidaymakers

28 Dec 12

New Zealanders will be able to enjoy free WiFi throughout summer after Telecom and Vodafone installed public hotspots across the country.

As part of a national trial involving over 100 hotspots, Telecom has activated services through existing services as well as newly built access points.

With nine hotspots created in Rotorua, three in Whakatane and one in Ohope, Taupo has missed out on the scheme at this stage.

"We have selected the regions where we were able to leverage existing infrastructure to support," Telecom told the Daily Post.

After a short online registration, Telecom says the hotspots will automatically connect to the service providing the user has a New Zealand mobile number.

"Whether it's searching for a nearby cafe, uploading a few holiday snaps to your Facebook page, or, in my case, checking work emails, Kiwis and visitors can get online for free without having to leave their deckchair," says Ed Hyde, Telecom GM.

The telco firm says between 80 and 90% of hotspots are now available with the remainder to follow shortly.

Vodafone has also announced plans to increase its capacity during the summer, installing new sites in Hahei, Pauanui, Mount Maunganui, Russell, Mangawhai Heads, Whangamata and Whitianga.

"Ahead of each year's holiday season, Vodafone boosts its network capabilities to manage the high volume of calls, texts and data," says Tony Baird, Vodafone chief network officer to the Daily Post.

"Not everyone wants to race back to work in the New Year, so we aim to boost capacity in the busiest holiday spots to ensure smartphone and mobile broadband users can still get access to their apps and information from the bach or camping ground."

Will you be taking advantage of the free WiFi during the summer? Tell us your plans below

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