We’ve known for a while that we’ve got some pretty good mobile connectivity in Australia. Of course, there are outages like Telstra’s issues last year and the recent issue for Vodafone. But for the most part, our mobile networks are solid and provide good speeds to users. So it may not be a surprise that as one of the first countries globally to have a user-facing 5G network, Australia is among the world leaders in 5G user speeds.

Believe it or not, Optus leads the pack

No that’s not a typo, Optus does in fact have the fastest median speed of our 5G capable carriers. This is among the Australian average of 283.56 Mbps during Q1 2021, making Australian speed nearly double the global average, 142.05 Mbps. The numbers for individual carriers are pretty impressive, with better average speeds than most users are receiving via their home NBN connection:

  • Optus lead the way with 309.86 Mbps
  • Telstra follow closely at 295.00 Mbps
  • Vodafone are somewhat languishing in comparison, but still above the global average at 184.98 Mbps

What won’t surprise anyone is the fact that Telstra’s coverage outstrips the competition for 5G coverage, by a considerable margin.

In Australia during Q1 2021, the best 5G Availability wasn’t even close: Telstra showed a 5G Availability of 32.8%, which was more than double that of Optus (13.6%) and nearly 10 times that of Vodafone (3.4%).

The other data that won’t surprise too many users is that Melbourne has the fastest speeds on average, followed by Sydney then my home town of Adelaide. There is then a significant gap back to Brisbane, Canberra and Perth in terms of outright 5G speeds. It’s these area’s that have lower median speeds, that have the best 5G availability and that somewhat makes sense with more users on the network that there’s a bit less to go around.

All three networks will continue to upgrade their 5G network over time and we’ll see better speeds for everyone regardless of network. For now though, if you want to have the best 5G coverage you’ll need to be on Telstra and that’s not likely to change for quite some time.

Data has been independently collected by Speedtest who will continue to track this progress over time