TelstraClear's data cap-free weekend frustrates customers

Internet service provider TelstraClear has left many customers irate after it lifted data caps from Friday evening until last night. The weight of the extra downloads caused residential internet speeds to slow down.

Internet service provider TelstraClear has left many customers irate after it lifted data caps from Friday evening until last night. Customers took to Twitter to complain about the promotion, which left many with slow internet service.

Head of TelstraClear's consumer department, Steve Jackson, said TelstraClear's New Zealand network performed "to its usual high standard" and only access to international websites was affected.

The company has no plans to provide customers with compensation.

TelstraClear's Twitter account, @TelstraClearNZ, has been inundated with complaints about internet speeds. The company had previously released a statement warning customers that internet speeds could be slower for the weekend.

TelstraClear residential customer Conrad Johnston, who hosts a live drag chat show called LaQuisha from Wellington, said he had to cancel the show for the week.

"I’ve got TelstraClear at home and then we usually do the chat show at a studio, and that’s got a Telecom connection. But just by chance, we were gonna do a flashback [clip] show," he said.

"So I went onto [live video streaming service] Livestream and started to download the assets to edit something together and... no. Just no."

Johnston said his internet speeds usually reached 15Mbit/sec and his highest speeds over the weekend reached 2Mbit/s. At worst, his speeds were down to 0.6Mbit/s.

Johnston said he could not stream audio from his paid account, or watch video on YouTube.

One 400MB file was going to take 11 hours to download, Johnston said. The download was international.

"That's the main reason I've got TelstraClear, actually - they've got good upload speeds as well as good download speeds," he said.

"I'm a hobbyist, right, but I do this video stuff and video files are big, and I want them to go up and down quick."

Johnston said he felt TelstraClear owed customers some compensation because the internet was "unusable". He had already called the company to seek compensation.

"I'm paying for a service, the service wasn't available on those two days," he said. "I don't want to pay for those two days."

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Tags ISPinternetTelstraClearInternet Service Provider

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Siobhan Keogh

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