Stats NZ has a new website.

For new releases go to

As we transition to our new site, you'll still find some Stats NZ information here on this archive site.

  • Share this page to Facebook
  • Share this page to Twitter
  • Share this page to Google+
Internet Service Provider Survey: 2011
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  14 October 2011
Data quality

Period specific information

This section has information about data that has changed since the last release.  

General information

This section contains information about data that has not changed between releases.


Period specific information

Population size

The population size has remained stable since 2009 when the Internet Service Provider (ISP) Survey moved to an annual collection from six-monthly. As the ISP Survey is a census of all Internet Service Providers in New Zealand, this is expected. Small changes in the population size can be explained by:

  • new businesses being created and others going out of business, including ISPs absorbing other ISPs
  • change in definition of the scope of the survey
  • gaps in population selection method.

Response rates

The target response rate for the Internet Service Provider Survey: 2011 was 85 percent overall. A 100 percent response rate was required for key respondents. The overall response rate achieved was 91 percent and 100 percent for key respondents.

Consistency with other periods and datasets

Changes have been made to the Internet Service Provider Survey: 2011, which affect comparability of data to previous surveys.

Data source

The Internet Service Provider Survey is a survey sent to all New Zealand-based Internet Service Providers. This release provides the results of the ISP Survey: 2011.


Connections to the Internet via mobile phone were included for the first time in 2011 (see Questionnaire changes below). As such, the scope of the questionnaire no longer requires Internet connectivity to be “permanent or regular”. Mobile phones are becoming a preferred method to access the Internet and in order for the ISP Survey to cover all businesses that supply Internet connectivity, this change was required. The purpose of this change is to improve the coverage of ISPs despite the device used for Internet access.

Target population

The target population is defined as: 'All resident New Zealand Internet Service Providers', where Internet Service Provider were defined as economically significant businesses that supply Internet connectivity services to individuals, households, businesses, and other organisations in New Zealand. As above, the words “permanent and regular” (Internet connectivity) have been removed from the target population definition to accommodate the inclusion of mobile phone connections.

For a definition of economically significant businesses, please refer to the Definitions section.

Survey population

Businesses who provide Internet connections via a mobile phone are now included in the survey population.

Businesses that provided other Internet services such as web and domain hosting, but who did not provide ISP services, were excluded from the population. This was because the above businesses were not strictly classified as ISPs. Web-hosting units do not interact directly with the public. Since the public access their website through an ISP, the web-hosting units' activity was already covered by the survey. Including these businesses would have resulted in double counting.

Businesses that provided occasional or unmetered access (including Internet cafes, kiosks, libraries, and universities) were also excluded. The activity of this group was covered by the ISP each business subscribed to, so they did not need to be surveyed separately.


Several changes were made to the population selection process. In the past (2005–2009) lists of ISPs obtained from NetGuide and Internet NZ were used to select the population. From 2010 onwards the population was sourced from the Statistics New Zealand Business Frame. The population was defined in terms of the ANZSIC06. It specifically included businesses in:

  • ANZSIC J591000: this code classifies Internet service providers and web search portals. It includes businesses mainly engaged in providing Internet access services. Also included are businesses which provide web search portals used to search the Internet.

  • ANZSIC J580100: this code classifies wired telecommunications network operation. It includes businesses mainly engaged in operating, maintaining, or providing access to facilities for the transmission of voice, data, text, sound, and video using wired telecommunications networks. Businesses primarily operate fixed (wired) telecommunications infrastructure, but may also utilise other types of technologies in order to deliver services.

  • ANZSIC J580200: this code classifies other telecommunications network operations. It includes businesses mainly engaged in operating and maintaining switching and transmission facilities that provide omni-directional or point-to-point communications via wireless telecommunications networks. Transmission facilities may be based on a single technology or a combination of technologies, including communications via airwaves and through satellite systems.

  • ANZSIC M70000: this code classifies computer system design and related services. It includes businesses mainly engaged in providing expertise in the field of information technologies such as writing, modifying, testing, or supporting software to meet the needs of a particular consumer; or planning and designing computer systems that integrate computer hardware, software, and communication technologies.

These ANZSIC codes are used in conjunction with previous final survey lists and a key word search. 

Two new words were added to the key word search: "mobile" and "cellular". This was to ensure that ISPs who provided Internet connections via a mobile handset were captured.

Questionnaire changes

The following changes have been made to the ISP questionnaire for 2011:

  • The definition of an ISP has changed. The words "permanent or regular" have been removed from the previous definition. It now reads: "ISPs are defined as businesses that supply Internet connectivity services to individuals, households, or other organisations."
  • A comment has been included under the "cellular technology" connection type to indicate that mobile handset connections should not be included here and will be included in a later question.
  • Question 12 is a new question and asks for the average amount of data consumed per subscriber.
  • Question 13 is a new question and asks for the percentage of broadband data that is unmetered. Data is unmetered if it is not being charged to subscribers and is not metered for a data cap.
  • The number of speed categories has increased. The speed category "24Mbps to less than 100Mbps" from previous surveys has been split into two categories: "24Mbps to less than 50Mbps" and "50Mbps to less than 100Mbps".
  • In the upload speeds section, the slowest speed category has been removed ("less than 128kbps") and speed category "1.5Mbps or greater" has been divided into: "1.5Mbps to less than 10Mbps" and "10Mbps or greater".
  • Question 16 is a new question and asks for the number of subscribers that had connections via a mobile handset (copied from Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)).
  • New security questions have been added and the filtering content question was removed.

Timing of published data

The close off date for data collection of the ISP Survey: 2011 was 31 August 2011.


General information

Reference period

The reference period for the survey is 30 June, which aligns with the reference period used by other Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) member countries. Prior to 2009 data was collected in March and September each year. As a result of the change to the June reference date, there is a 15-month gap between the 2008 and 2009 ISP Surveys.

Accuracy of the data

Data collection

The Internet Service Provider Survey is a postal survey of all businesses meeting the population selection criteria.

Non sampling error

The ISP Survey is a census rather than a sample, therefore the data is not subject to sample error. Other inaccuracies, such as non-sampling errors, may affect the data. These non-sampling errors may arise from sources such as:

  • errors in the reporting of data by respondents
  • errors in capturing or processing of data
  • lack of imputation for missing data.

Every effort has been made to reduce non-sampling error to a minimum by careful design and thorough testing of questionnaires, efficient operating systems and procedures, and appropriate methodology. Non-sampling errors may still occur and are not quantifiable.


Where data was missing or required clarification, respondents were contacted in the first instance. When necessary, missing data for individual questions was imputed based on historical data collected. No adjustment was made to account for businesses who did not respond to the survey.

Consistency of terms and variables

Terms and variables can differ between data sets and over time and may not be directly comparable. See the Definitions section for terms and variables used in this release.


Confidentiality measures have been put in place to ensure the anonymity of respondents and to safeguard against any individual data being released.

More information

More information about the Internet Service Provider Survey is available on our website.


While all care and diligence has been used in processing, analysing, and extracting data and information in this publication, Statistics NZ gives no warranty it is error-free and will not be liable for any loss or damage suffered by the use directly, or indirectly, of the information in this publication.


Timed statistical releases are delivered using postal and electronic services provided by third parties. Delivery of these releases may be delayed by circumstances outside the control of Statistics NZ. Statistics NZ accepts no responsibility for any such delays.

Crown copyright©

Creative Commons logo.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 New Zealand licence. You are free to copy, distribute, and adapt the work, as long as you attribute the work to Statistics NZ and abide by the other licence terms. Please note you may not use any departmental or governmental emblem, logo, or coat of arms in any way that infringes any provision of the Flags, Emblems, and Names Protection Act 1981. Use the wording 'Statistics New Zealand' in your attribution, not the Statistics NZ logo.

  • Share this page to Facebook
  • Share this page to Twitter
  • Share this page to Google+
  • Share this page to Facebook
  • Share this page to Twitter
  • Share this page to Google+