After much “mulling-over” I finally decided to get a Wireless Internet account. I looked into each of the obvious Vendors – 3, Optus and Vodafone. Of those only Optus had a pre-paid service – the other two offered only 24 month plans that required a credit check and lots of stupid questions. On closer inspection though Optus’s 2Gb for $30 pre-paid plan began to look less inviting. In addition the pre-paid blocks expire after 30 days and the fine print states that usage is measured in 10Mb increments. So connecting and downloading a 1Kb file will accrue 10Mb of usage! On a 2Gb plan that’s only 200 individual connections?!
As it turned out the best plan for me was the least obvious. Telstra. Yep – that’s right – Telstra. Apparently since 24-Aug-2008 their ludicrously expensive Wireless broadband plans have dropped to become well err… just very expensive. A 1Gb plan now only costs $60 per month on a 36 month plan. But here’s the deal-making points for me:
- No credit checks and stupid questions – even if you’re not an existing customer (which I am).
- Modem included in price.
- Best coverage.
- Ability to change up/down quota with no penalties.
- Half price for first 12 months – making it on par with best 3 and Optus plans.
- At the end of 12 months simply drop the plan and rejoin for another 12 months at half price. Plan cancellation fee of $240 – which I’m willing to pay above and beyond Optus and 3 for:
12 month plan instead of 24 month,
better joining experience.
Trust me I was amazed as anyone – I now have a Bigpond account. This morning I would have expected the end of time to have occurred prior to that event happening.
I live in an area where the exchange is declared by Telstra as “full” and hence ADSL 2 is not available. I found a nifty web site – www.speedtest.net – and ran two tests. [Seriously if you haven’t already seen speedtest go check it out – its a very slick looking web-app.]
My 1500/256 ADSL account with Internode.
My new Next G account with Telstra.
Unfortunately I’m unlikely to ever use that speed. The 1Gb plan is just enough for e-mail, messenger and occasional web browsing whilst I’m on the move.