If your home “broadband” connection is anything like mine then you know the frustration of not being able to get a decent connection to the internet. What do I mean by decent? Dan and Jason have NBN, Chris has 100mbps cable. Me? I’ve got ADSL which tops out at a miserly 3mbps.
The problem is for many Australians, including some in built up and metro areas, is the only connection option is ADSL at the end of a very long run of copper. This means poor speeds, unreliable connections and a life of digital frustration. It took me a full eight months to upload less than half of my photos to Google Photos. Yeah, it’s digital hell.
Just wait for the NBN I hear you say. With the slow rollout of the NBN, I’m not going to see the NBN this side of 2019, and even then, that’s if the NBN Co don’t continue their track record of running late, or changing schedule dates on connection rollouts. I suspect the same is true for many for many others.
Long story short, a wired connection isn’t currently solving the internet issues for many users. When the NBN does reach most of us, it may be great, assuming it’s not already outdated by then. Until then, there is a glimmer of hope for those stuck in a situation like mine. I have been tracking the progress of Wireless Broadband over the past few years, however, until recently the cost was prohibitive and the data caps laughable.
This seems to be changing to a point. Last month we reviewed the Optus Home Wireless Broadband plan, and found it to be a great alternative. As such, we thought we might take a look at the other options available that may address the big issue faced in that review and that was effectively a monthly data limit of 250GB.
To refresh, Optus offer a Home Wireless Broadband plan For $80 a month, on a 2-year contract, with 200GB of included data and every additional 10GB costing $10. All of this is delivered at a pretty stable 15 Mbps down and 1 Mbps up.
It’s pretty good, compares somewhat well to wired options that others can access, and offers a viable alternative.
Telstra offers a Home Wireless Broadband plan, and it’s utilising the Nighthawk M1 which if you’re living in the right area could deliver phenomenal speeds. Unlike Optus’s offering, Telstra doesn’t constrain the data rate – you’ll get whatever is faster near you. However, with a maximum data cap of 80GB costing $150 per month, I still don’t consider this a real replacement for a wired broadband connection; it’s simply too expensive with too little data.
Vodafone does not offer a dedicated Home Broadband plan, and their mobile broadband plans aren’t really suitable for a home internet connection — not enough data included to be seriously considered, unless you’re just looking for a SIM service for your iPad.
Enter Vivid Wireless. Vivid has been on my radar for a few years, but unfortunately for me, they only covered the inner metropolitan areas of Brisbane. That’s changed now, and they have expanded their coverage. What’s special about Vivid? They offer an unlimited plan. Yes, unlimited home LTE internet.
What’s the catch? Firstly, the service is restricted to a 10Mbps down / 1Mbps up connection, which for me is still lightning fast. It’s quicker than ADSL1, or ADSL2 too far from the exchange, and offers more than enough throughput to stream video, upload photos and more.
Secondly, it costs $89 per month. Now that’s a price that I consider reasonable. I’ve seriously looked at options that cost hundreds of dollars a month to deliver less speed than that. Having the ability to go on a month to month plan, assuming you purchase the modem outright, and get 10 Mbps down is something I was only dreaming of last month.
While $89 is more than the $50 is per month I pay now for my questionable 3mbps connection, for me who relies so heavily on the internet, it’s a price I’m willing to pay. An extra $39 a month to more than treble my internet speed, with unlimited data? No brainer.
If you find yourself with slow internet, no hope of an NBN connection anytime soon and willing to pay the slight premium that currently comes with Home LTE connections perhaps you should look into options for your area? I’m switching and feel so excited about the prospect of using the modern internet. I hear you can stream video these days.
If you know of other great Home Wireless Broadband Options sing out in the comments, even if it’s restricted to certain areas, you just may help a fellow reader out of internet hell.