What are the fastest internet plans in Australia?

Advertisement

Australia is a huge country geographically, with not a whole lot of people in it. Even though we are one of the most urbanised countries in the world, building the National Broadband Network (NBN) and providing ‘fast’ internet in general has been no mean feat. In fact, it has been somewhat of a struggle, with providers having to compensate customers for slow speeds, and a whole range of customers ditching the NBN altogether and moving to alternative networks.

But for many households, the NBN will still be the source of the fastest internet plans you are likely to find. However, finding a fast plan and reliable provider is a massive challenge. Read on to find out who the fastest NBN providers in Australia are, and how to pick the right super-fast broadband plan for your needs.

Compare NBN Plans

Loading...

Brand Plan and Highlights Data**/month Speed Tier± Cost^^/month
Aussie Broadband Logo

Everyday

  • Most Satisfied nbn™ Customers 2019
  • Fetch TV available to bundle (from $10/mth)
  • All-Australian technical support

+$164 modem (optional) | min. cost $243.00 over 1 month

UnlimitedData**/month Standard PlusSpeed Tier± $79.00/month^^ Go To Site
MyRepublic Logo

Unlimited Essential Flexi

  • 43Mbps Typical Evening Speed (7-11pm)
  • $0 Set Up Fee + BYO Modem Available
  • No Lock-In Contracts

+$79 modem (optional) | min. cost $148.00 over 1 month

UnlimitedData**/month Standard PlusSpeed Tier± $69.00/month^^ Go To Site
View all NBN plans listed on Canstar Blue

Home Ultrafast (NBN 1000) and Superfast (NBN 250) Plans

It’s possible to get gigabit-speed NBN in Australia, although it’s not available to everyone (and definitely doesn’t come cheap). Aussie Broadband has recently launched the first nationally available residential NBN 1000/50 plan to huge demand, offering unlimited data for $149 per month. However, you’ll need to be on a Fibre to the Premises NBN connection to qualify, or live at one of the HFC connected homes capable of achieving ultra-fast speeds.

Aussie Broadband also offers NBN 250/25 and NBN 250/50 plans, beginning from $129 per month. These plans are also only available to qualifying FTTP or HFC customers, but offer a typical peak-hour download speed of 215Mbps.

The following table shows a selection of published unlimited Aussie Broadband NBN plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

Brand Features Max Data**/billing period Advertised Cost^^/billing period

Power User

  • Home Superfast Speed (NBN 250/25)
  • Optional modem from $149 ($15 P&H)

min. cost $129 over first month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $129Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site

Power House

  • Home Ultrafast Speed (NBN 1000/50)
  • Optional modem from $149 ($15 P&H)

min. cost $149 over first month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $149Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
View all NBN plans listed on Canstar Blue

Premium Evening Speed (NBN 100) Plans

The following table shows a selection of published unlimited Premium Evening Speed (NBN 100) plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of monthly cost, from the lowest to highest, and then by alphabetical order of provider. Use our comparison tool above to see plans from a wide range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners. This list is not an endorsement of the speeds, which can be impacted by numerous variables.

What is the fastest internet in Australia?

Generally speaking, the fastest household internet speeds that you can expect in Australia are around 100 megabits per second (Mbps) downloading, and 40Mbps uploading (unless you qualify for NBN 250 or NBN 1000, as outlined above). 100Mbps means you can download around 12.5 megabytes of content per second.

While there are undoubtedly some households sporadically achieving above this mark, 100Mbps is pretty much the benchmark for fast internet in Australia, while geographically smaller nations like Singapore and even New Zealand are routinely getting access to much faster speeds of up to 1Gbps (gigabit per second).

It’s all well and good for telcos to advertise potential 100Mbps speeds, but what are you actually going to get in the real world? In May 2020, the ACCC released its ninth quarterly report on the state of telco services and the speeds of their NBN plans. The ACCC found that in peak periods (7pm to 11pm):

  • Optus performed at 89.6% of its maximum plan speed
  • Exetel performed at 87.0% of its maximum plan speed
  • TPG performed at 86.7% of its maximum plan speed
  • Aussie Broadband performed at 86.1% of its maximum plan speed
  • iiNet performed at 83.9% of its maximum plan speed
  • Telstra performed at 83.9% of its maximum plan speed
  • MyRepublic performed at 82.9% of its maximum plan speed
  • Dodo & iPrimus performed at 82.5% of its maximum plan speed

This in effect means that out of the biggest Australian providers, Optus was technically rated ‘the best’, as its plans were more likely to achieve their maximum speeds. This is the third report in a row to see Optus ranked number one. Previously, TPG held the top spot for several consecutive reports, which does demonstrate that performance could change from month to month. While the ACCC report is a helpful guide to which providers might deliver the fastest NBN speeds, keep in mind that there are still many variables that will impact what happens at your place.

If you’re interested in plans from the above providers, we’ve listed some of the fastest plans from each telco below. The following table shows a selection of published unlimited Premier Evening Speed (NBN 100) plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.

I’ve experienced faster speeds than 100Mbps: What gives?

While there are certainly instances of home broadband speeds faster than 100Mbps downloading, chances are if you’ve done a speed test at a university or large business, you’ll have experienced speeds much faster than 100Mbps. Wireless speeds of 400Mbps or more at a university are not uncommon!

This is because they frequently have more advanced infrastructure and different plans to what’s available to the average home user. Residents of new apartment buildings may also get access to faster speeds than the average home, probably because of fibre internet being fed straight through the building – speeds of over 100Mbps for both downloading and uploading are often achieved.

How can I get fast internet in my home?

There are a number of things you can do to improve your internet speed without changing your plan per se, but Australians are generally experiencing faster internet speeds than ever before, with big potential for the future. However, pretty much the most foolproof way is to get an NBN plan on the fastest speed tier – that being Tier 4.

Premium Evening Speed/NBN 100 – 100Mbps Internet Plans

NBN 100, also known as Premium Evening Speed, represents the pinnacle of mainstream NBN in Australia – with 100Mbps downloads and 40Mbps uploads. NBN Co. (the company responsible for the rollout of NBN across the country) says that these speeds are good for 4K video streaming, ‘super responsive’ online gaming, and uploading and downloading large files.

Optus claims that maximum Premium speeds are enough to download a 200 megabyte TV show (about a 42 minute long show in high definition) in just 16 seconds. However, these plans can cost a pretty penny – often $80 a month or more for unlimited data.

How much does Premium Evening Speed/NBN 100 cost?

For unlimited data, the least you can expect to pay is about $70 per month, with most plans around $90 a month or more. For these prices, you usually only get straight broadband and not much in the way of home phone call packs, or any other perks included.

At the cheapest end of the scale, keep an eye out for service providers like MyRepublic, SpinTel, Barefoot Telecom and Mate Communicate. With the larger providers, such as Optus and Telstra, you’ll usually need to pay around $90-$100 a month for unlimited data. However, where the bigger providers shine is with their inclusions of extra stuff – expect entertainment packages and other goodies to come bundled in.

What if I don’t have fibre NBN?

While fibre NBN customers typically have the best chance to get super-fast internet, other users shouldn’t be completely dismayed.

  • NBN Fixed Wireless customers can still get up to 50Mbps download speeds.
  • SkyMuster customers can still achieve download speeds of around 25Mbps.
  • ADSL2+ customers can get speeds download speeds up to 24Mbps.
  • Cable customers can get anywhere from up to 30Mbps, all the way up to 100Mbps.

While it doesn’t seem so long ago that Australians were used to hearing the beeps and boops of dial-up internet, it’s evident we’ve come a long way in regards to internet speeds. Remember: 1 megabit is equal to about 0.125 megabytes, so multiply your theoretical top speed by that amount and that is feasibly how much you could download in one second.

However, keep in mind is that top speeds are a maximum only. Many users report that their internet is much slower than the advertised speed, and as mentioned earlier, there are several factors that can be at fault here. While it makes sense to optimise your internet speed where possible, at the end of the day there are things like congestion that are out of your control that can affect speeds.

The issue of advertised speeds falling short of expectations has become a serious issue, with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) investigating service providers to ensure the most accurate performance information is reported before customers sign up to new plans.

What about 5G internet plans?

You may have heard about 5G with its fast speeds as the ‘NBN killer’ but at the moment, the 5G network doesn’t pose much of a threat to the NBN network, as 5G coverage across Australia is still quite limited. But before you jump on a 5G mobile broadband plan, there are a couple things to consider. Firstly, you’ll need to check coverage in your area, as there’s no point in having a 5G-capable modem if you don’t have the network available to you.

Secondly, these 5G networks aren’t meant to replace the NBN network, but rather work as a supplement to fixed networks — if we relied more on the 5G mobile network for our internet needs than the fixed networks, it could cause some serious congestion problems. Customers who can’t access NBN in their area or have other problems with connecting to the NBN, might find these 5G internet options a better alternative.

Telstra was the first telco in Australia to roll out its 5G network, and with that came the first 5G device in Australia, the HTC 5G Hub. While both Optus and Vodafone are also rolling out 5G networks, Telstra does at this stage, have a bit of a head start when it comes to 5G network coverage.

Telstra Mobile Broadband Plans

The following table shows a selection of published Telstra mobile broadband plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of their cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.

Brand Features Max Data**/billing period Advertised Cost^^/billing period
Telstra Logo

Extra Small

  • SIM only plan
  • No excess data charges in Australia
  • Includes data-free sports and music streaming
  • No 5G access

min. cost $15 over one month

5GBMax Data**/billing period $15Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

Small

  • SIM only plan
  • No excess data charges in Australia
  • Includes data-free sports and music streaming
  • No 5G access

min. cost $25 over one month

20GBMax Data**/billing period $25Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

Medium

  • SIM only plan
  • No excess data charges in Australia
  • Includes data-free sports and music streaming
  • 5G network access included

min. cost $50 over one month

60GBMax Data**/billing period $50Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

Large

  • SIM only plan
  • No excess data charges in Australia
  • Includes data-free sports and music streaming
  • 5G network access included

min. cost $75 over one month

200GBMax Data**/billing period $75Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
View all NBN plans listed on Canstar Blue

What’s the best internet for streaming?

Netflix regularly rates how fast popular Australian broadband providers perform in its streaming speed tests. Optus frequently ranks as the best provider for Netflix out of the six main providers tested, usually ahead of iiNet, while Telstra has improved in recent times.

  • Netflix recommends a minimum speed of 0.5Mbps for standard streaming and much faster for HD streaming.
  • HD streaming requires much more bandwidth and a higher download speed.

Luckily, most broadband connections in Australia can feasibly cover this requirement. However, congestion and other factors can easily wreak havoc on your Netflix enjoyment.

Should I get faster internet?

Fast internet relies on countless factors to achieve optimum speeds, so taking a stab in the dark and changing providers on the same connection may not result in the improved performance you crave. However, if your current plan has been rather lackluster for a long time – and at all times of the day – then it could make sense to test the waters and switch providers.

  • Arguably the best and easiest way to get faster internet will be to wait until the NBN comes to your house, and upgrade to the fastest Typical Evening Speed option available at your location.
  • If you’re already on the NBN, you might be surprised to know that a faster speed tier may not be all that much more expensive – or that your current plan may not be delivering the speeds you expected.

The NBN is Australia’s best hope for reliable, wide-reaching and ‘fast’ internet, but until it’s rolled out across the country, it can pay to make the best of what you currently have and shop around for a better deal.

Fastest Internet Plans Australia — Summary

The following table lists the NBN 100 plans covered in this article.

Telco Plan NBN Speed Monthly Cost Contract Term
Vodafone Premium NBN Plan NBN 100 $85 (promo, normally $95) No contract
Kogan Gold Unlimited NBN 100 $88.90 No contract
Tangerine XXL Speed Boost NBN 100 $74.90 (promo, normally $89.90) No contract
Aussie Broadband Power User NBN 100/20 $89 No contract
MyRepublic Unlimited NBN 100/20 NBN 100/20 $89 No contract
TPG NBN100 SL Bundle NBN 100 $89.99 18 months
Belong Unlimited Premium NBN 100 $95 No contract
Exetel NBN100 Unlimited NBN 100 $99 No contract
Flip Fast NBN 100 $99.90 No contract
iiNet NBN100 Liimitless NBN 100 $99.99 No contract
Internode Platinum Unlimited NBN 100 $99.99 No contract
Southern Phone NBN Max Unlimited NBN 100 $90 (promo, normally $95) No contract
Optus Internet Everyday NBN 100 $105 No contract
Telstra Premium Unlimited NBN 100 $110 No contract

Compare NBN Providers

Share this article

Advertisement