Re: Whose modems were they anyway
The NZ consumer market suffered for many years from a bit of a monopoly ("absence of competition"?) on low-cost device types being sold which would also connect to the certain major ISP without something approximating sysadmin skills. ISP provided ones were from the same range of vendors.
Those of us clueful enough to buy quality rather than cheap hardware tend to prefer other ISP services as well. So most of the populace served by said ISP has a range of crap hardware even today.