Alright, Elite customers! It’s almost time to upgrade you from your already-fast 200/200 megabit experience to a blazing-fast next-gen world. (And if you’re not an Elite customer yet, there’s no time like the present!)

Naturally, you’ve got questions about this process. We’re pleased to report that it should be nice and painless for you. Here are the details, in a convenient bulleted list:

  • Dates: We’re upgrading Elite customers between 1 and 8 October. When your upgrade goes through will depend on where you’re located – we expect Christchurch and Hamilton upgrades to be done a bit earlier, and other regions to take a bit longer. Regardless of your location, we currently expect the upgrade should be complete by 12 October. If yours is not done by then, please get in touch.
  • We don’t expect any downtime: There should be no need to reconfigure or restart anything. However, if you’re on Elite and you’re not getting higher than 200/200 speeds by October 12, try the ol’ on-and-off-again. If it still doesn’t work, drop us a line.
  • Max speed: We want to be very up-front about this. Due to technical limitations, the absolute maximum speed you can expect to get under perfect conditions is around 930Mbps down/480Mbps up. It may be possible to get faster than this. However, it is very likely that your speeds will be considerably slower. it depends on a lot of factors. Our network engineers have suggested that the fastest a customer with good equipment on a wired connection should expect from Elite is around 600 – 900 Mbps download / 300 – 500 Mbps upload (although it’s certainly possible that some connections will be faster.) This is likely the case for other ISPs, not just Bigpipe. Don’t worry – this is still insanely fast!
  • Your router: Check that your router can actually manage Elite speeds. It may be fine with 200/200 and baulk at anything higher, so it pays to have a look. Googling it is the best option.
  • The Bigpipe Modem: While Bigpipe modem (the Huawei HG659 modem/router) is technically capable of gigabit switching, our internal tests show it can achieve maximum speeds of around 500 Mbps upload/download when routing actual internet traffic in a real-world environment. Your results may vary. We have had customers achieve speeds in excess of 800 Mbps on speedtests when using this modem.
  • Your computer / device: We’ve now reached a magical new era when the internet connection is actually faster than many people’s home computer can handle. If you want to get the most from Elite, your computer must be fast as well. If your device is not up to it, you will not be able to get high speeds. The recommended spec for the computer is an Intel i5 CPU or above, and you will absolutely need a gigabit ethernet adaptor.
  • WiFi: There is a very good chance that your speed on devices connected using WiFi will not hit anywhere near max speeds (see here for Reasons.) Our advice is to always measure speeds using a wired/Ethernet connection to an actual computer, as a mobile device (iPad, smartphones, etc) relies on WiFi and simply won’t be up to it.
  • It might take a while to get up to speed: Allow at least 24 hours of consistent connection to let the hyperdrive spin up properly.
  • Speedtests: Speedtests often don’t reflect real-world performance. They’re like taking a car out on a racetrack and driving it at full speed – it’s very different to everyday driving on the road! Your speedtest results will vary – often massively – depending on where you are sending traffic to and from. If you’re looking to take your line for a speedy spin, the server you use must also be fast enough to serve you at max speeds. If you’re running speedtests, we recommend you use speedtest.net’s Auckland Spark server. Here’s a video on how to switch to the correct server: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toI84pQnvPo

And that’s it for now! Enjoy the new Elite goodness, and as always, if there’s something we haven’t covered above, feel free to leave a comment. If you’re having trouble and you’ve run through the above checklist, drop us a line and we’ll suss it as soon as we can.