Lightwire selected to improve rural internet 

As part of the Government’s $47m Rural Capacity Upgrade program, Lightwire has been selected as the fixed wireless provider for the Waikato and Bay of Plenty. 


The program, which is being funded from Covid relief funds, will see new towers built in rural areas experiencing poor performance or limited capacity, as well as technology upgrades carried out on existing towers. 


In our patch the project will see the funds used to further enhance broadband speeds over our network and drive up service uptime, resulting in 13,057 locations receiving improved broadband services from 2022 (with all milestones completed by 2024).  


Nationwide, the Rural Capacity Upgrade program aims to improve broadband services for 47,000 rural locations, and we have been asked to look after a quarter of that number. We take this as a sign of our continued growth, and the trust that Crown Infrastructure Partners (CIP) has in us after our successful rollout of services under our RBI2+ contract with them. 


The money will be used to upgrade 64 towers on our network with a combination of mains power upgrades, installation of fibre and high-capacity wireless backhaul links, and upgrades to physical tower structures to extend the life and capacity of our sites into the future. 


Here’s how this funding will allow our customers to do more from their rural locations: 

We know that access to high speed and reliable home broadband has never been more important for rural households, so we are pumped to be playing such a pivotal role in this project alongside CIP and the other ISPs. 


Our efforts to supercharge rural speeds and remove the brakes from rural living have received a real shot in the arm with this news and we look forward to providing regular updates as each milestone is completed.  


For the Government’s press release announcing this project, click here 

Brendan Ritchie 

CRO – Lightwire 


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