Slingshot (ISP)

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For other uses, see Slingshot (disambiguation).
Slingshot Communications Limited
Type Private (subsidiary of CallPlus)
Industry Internet Service Provider
Telecommunications
Founded 2001
Headquarters Auckland, New Zealand
Key people Mark Callander, CEO
Taryn Hamilton, GM
Products Broadband
Dialup
Telephony
VoIP
Parent CallPlus Holdings Limited
Website www.slingshot.co.nz

Slingshot is a privately owned telecommunications company in New Zealand. It is the third largest telco in the country and is the world’s biggest Kiwi owned and operated broadband provider. It has approximately 10% share of the NZ Homeline and Broadband Market.

History[edit]

Slingshot was founded in 2001 by Malcolm Dick and Annette Presley. The company was established as part of the CallPlus group of companies to provide residential customers with high quality and affordable internet and toll calling services.

Slingshot competed heavily on price and service efficiency from day one and offered customers a huge amount of calling and dial-up value for very little cost. Slingshot has grown from the small challenger brand in the marketplace to the third largest telco in New Zealand.

Slingshot is 100% Kiwi owned and operated with more than 300 staff all working locally in Auckland CBD.

Achievements & Successes[edit]

  • 2013 – Launched New Slingshot "Global Mode", Free on all Slingshot Broadband connections[1]
  • 2013 – Sponsored TV3’s new flagship current affairs show "3rd Degree"
  • 2012 – Finalist at the World Forum Broadband Awards in Amsterdam, for Broadband Unlimited
  • 2012 – Launched Rollover Data for Free on all Broadband Connections[2]
  • 2011 – The first ISP in NZ to launch Unlimited Broadband at only $60
  • 2011 – Free Wi-Fi for Auckland City and Rugby World Cup supporters[3]
  • 2009 – New Zealand’s Top Broadband Provider (NZ Herald Survey)[4]
  • 2007 – Best Internet Service Provider – People’s Choice Awards
  • 2005 – TUANZ Broadband Innovation Award
  • 2002 – i4free legal battle victory
    On 22 February 2002 i4free/Slingshot filed a claim in the High Court of New Zealand against Telecom for $18 million in damages to the business, breach of contract and a breach of the Commerce Act sections 27 and 36. This claim originated from April 2000 when i4free won a High Court injunction to stop Telecom from acting to disconnect further i4free customers.

Slingshot’s Better Network[edit]

Slingshot has New Zealand’s fastest growing unbundled Local Loop Network (LLU) and since 2012 has unbundled more than 150 exchanges from Whangarei to Invercargill. 75% of these exchanges have been installed outside Auckland in traditionally under-served regions.

Slingshot's Bigger and Better Network means Kiwi households can get better Broadband speeds, competitive Better Network deals, faster fault notification and faster fault resolution than would be available via a third party provider.

Slingshot Fibre (Ultra-Fast Broadband)[edit]

The New Zealand Government has undertaken an initiative which will see the delivery of Ultra-fast broadband using fibre optic cables to up to 75% of the population within a ten year period[5] The nationwide ultra-fast broadband network uses Fibre connectivity to provide download/upload speeds of up to 100Mbit/s/50Mbit/s for residential customers. Fibre will enable faster downloads and streaming - content including movies may be up to 50x the speed of regular broadband. Slingshot Fibre is currently being trialled with a number of customers and will be rolled out across New Zealand soon.

Products[edit]

  • Homeline & Broadband
    Slingshot’s core products are a range of competitive Homeline and Broadband bundles.
    These may include various features such as Rollover Data, Global Mode and the option of 20 EasyPhone Features.
  • Broadband Unlimited
    In October 2011 Slingshot launched its Broadband Unlimited plan. This was a hugely innovative product for the NZ market and saw a very large and immediate uptake amongst a generation of internet users who were demanding more data.
  • Naked Broadband
    Naked Broadband allows Slingshot customers to have a Broadband connection at home without the need for a fixed Homeline. Customers who don’t need, or don’t want to pay for, a homeline can have the same home broadband experience without the hassle of a landline.
    Changes in VOIP technology (like Slingshot’s iTalk product) and a significant decrease in demand for home phones have seen the popularity of Broadband Naked plans increase exponentially.
  • Calling and Tolls
    Slingshot provides National, International and Landline to mobile calling rates with base calling plans that are available for both Slingshot Homeline customers, and customers that choose to use Slingshot only as a calling/ tolls provider.
    Slingshot is the only telecommunications company to provide an "unbeatable price promise" on tolls.
  • Slingshot Mobile
    Slingshot mobile was started in 2009 as a challenger brand with a low cost point of difference. Originally Slingshot offered mobile services via a Mobile Virtual Network Operator service over Vodafone’s network. On 1 October 2011 Slingshot MVNO moved to offer customers better rates and service over Telecom’s 3G network[6]
  • Mobile Broadband
    Slingshot’s Mobile Broadband allows customers to access the internet while on the go. Slingshot provides customers with a Mobile Data Stick that allows complete access via a laptop while away from a network connection.
    The demand for mobile data in New Zealand has grown substantially. Consequently the Mobile Data market is becoming more competitive in NZ with Slingshot’s reducing rates reflect this increase in demand.

Innovative Products & Services[edit]

  • Rollover Data
    Slingshot was the largest ISP in New Zealand to introduce Rollover Data in October 2012 at no cost onto all of their broadband plans. Rollover Data allows Slingshot customers to keep their unused data every month (rolls-over into the next month) and it won’t expire for a full year.
  • Un-metering online content On 4 April 2012, Slingshot was the first ISP in New Zealand to un-meter Quickflix content. This meant that customers streaming content via Quickflix.co.nz were not charged for the data usage on their Slingshot account.
    This was followed shortly afterwards by Slingshot un-metering all streaming content on iSKY and eventually IGLOO. This allowed customers to stream as much of the media catalogue from these providers without the concern of data usage.
    In June 2013, SKY TV made some network changes to improve the viewing experience for on-demand customers when video streaming. This change to how SKY TV hosts content in NZ meant that all internet providers in NZ (including Slingshot) were no longer able to un-meter content from iSKY or IGLOO.[7]
  • Subscription TV – IGLOO
    On 17 April 2013, Slingshot launched a new product called the "IGLOO Home bundle". This further increased Slingshot "Whole of Household" product offering and provided customers with a full communications package.
    The IGLOO Home Bundle saw considerable success amongst NZ consumers looking to get away from the high-cost services of SKY Television.
  • Global Mode
    On 19 June 2013, Slingshot launched a free add-on to all of its Broadband plans called "Global Mode". Global Mode lets overseas visitors to New Zealand enjoy some of their favourite international web services from the convenience of a Slingshot Broadband connection.
    New Zealand has a rather tarnished reputation of being an "Internet Backwater" and Global Mode helps combat this by allowing visitors to continue accessing some of their favourite sites while in the country and on a Slingshot connection.
    Global Mode has received a significant amount of media attention since launch, with feature stories in the NZ Herald, TV3 News, NBR, Wall Street Journal and the BRW.

Charity/Fundraising Initiatives[edit]

  • Better Schools Programme
    A fundraising initiative run by Slingshot which allows customers to donate a portion of their bill each month to a nominated School. Any School is viable to be an affiliate of the programme.
  • Plunket
    In 2012, Slingshot undertook a fundraising drive for Kohimaramara Plunket. Slingshot customers were encouraged to nominate the charity, who would then receive a portion of their monthly bill as a donation.
    Kohi Plunket received a one-off donation of over $10k from Slingshot and continues to receive monthly donations.
  • Autism New Zealand
    Slingshot supports Autism New Zealand with an on-going fundraising initiative. Slingshot customers have the option of nominating Autism New Zealand during the sign up process, after which Slingshot will donate a portion of their monthly bill for the life time of that customer.

Market Position[edit]

Slingshot is the third largest ISP in New Zealand, and the largest Kiwi owned and operated broadband provider in New Zealand. As of 2014, it has 10% of the residential market.

Parent Company[edit]

Slingshot is a subsidiary of NZ telecommunications company CallPlus. Callplus was founded in 1996 to provide NZ consumers with competitive deals on Calling and Tolls. CallPlus continues today as the B2B arm of the organisation, providing comprehensive Calling, Mobile, Broadband, VOIP and Fibre services to SME’s across New Zealand. CallPlus

Slingshot was established in 2001 to provide residential solutions.

Senior Management[edit]

  • CallPlus CEO – Mark Callander
  • Slingshot General Manager – Taryn Hamilton
  • CallPlus General Manager – Kelvin Hussey

Criticism[edit]

On 15 August 2008, Slingshot came under criticism from the public and the media about a problem with their web cache. The cache, set up to solve a known problem with YouTube, caused private information of customers to be shared among other customers. The error caused users logging in to websites such as Gmail, Facebook, Bebo and TradeMe to be given access to the accounts of other Slingshot customers who were using those websites at the same time, instead of their own accounts.[8] Similar incidents occurred with Slingshot in September 2007 and May 2008[9][10]

In December 2013 Slingshot was fined $NZ 250,000 after it admitted transferring competitors' customers to its business without authority. Slingshot pleaded guilty to 50 charges under the New Zealand Fair Trading Act in the Auckland District Court and admitted it had transferred 27 customers' accounts from other ISPs to Slingshot without the customers' authority.[11]

References[edit]

External links[edit]