Chorus, New Zealand's incumbent wireline service provider, has taken a cue from Google Fiber's (Nasdaq: GOOG) community drive with its "Welcome to Gigatown" competition, which will provide a winning town 1 Gbps fiber to the home (FTTH) speeds.
Open to all of the communities that are covered by Chorus' Ultra-Fast Fiber (UFB), the service provider said the winner will be chosen by social media content and online community engagement.
The competition is set to begin on New Zealand's Labor Day holiday, Oct. 22, with the winning town being announced in early 2015. Chorus said it will be working with a number of stakeholders, including ISPs and local government agencies, on how to set the competition's boundaries.
Whatever town gets the 1Gbps service, the service provider will leverage the same GPON technology it is using for the rest of the UFB project.
Chorus said that this contest will enable it to drive innovation and examine how it can use FTTH services.
"'Welcome to Gigatown' will not only support a New Zealand town to fast-track its fibre future, it will provide insight as to how we can address all of these conditions," Chorus said on its FAQ page. "One of the key goals of the competition is to stimulate new innovation and business models through encouraging collaboration between NZ companies."
Chorus is hardly alone in its 1 Gbps FTTH desires. They join other service providers including Google, which is in the process of lighting services in parts of Kansas City and other markets, and Chattanooga's EPB Fiber, which has been offering service since 2010.
- see the release
Special report: Google Fiber, AT&T, CenturyLink drive the 1 Gbps game
New Zealand's UFB rollout 20 percent complete, has 3 percent take rate
Telecom New Zealand says VDSL is "stepping stone" to fiber broadband
New Zealand's Chorus to bring fiber to 250,000 homes, businesses in next phase of UFB build
Telstra, Vodafone, Telecom NZ issue submarine cable tender for Australia-New Zealand link