Last updated: June 2023
The National Broadband Network (NBN) provides consumers access to broadband across speed tiers available through internet providers. NBN speed tiers are based on a range of typical evening download speeds measured in Megabits per second (Mbps).
Please note, not all possible speed tiers available are considered and not all speed tiers are available everywhere. The actual speeds you experience, particularly during busy periods, may be limited by your internet connection type or by demand in other parts of the network. Check with a retailer before purchasing to see what speed you will likely receive at your address.
Wireless Broadband plans allow consumers to connect to the internet without a fixed line connection, by using either the 4G or 5G mobile network. As Wireless Broadband plans rely on mobile network coverage, the speed and reception delivered can vary by location. Check with a retailer before purchasing to see what speed you will likely receive at your address.
Canstar Blue’s Internet comparison tool allows consumers to compare the estimated cost of a plan against its included features by providing an estimated monthly cost and feature score (out of 10) for each of these three main categories:
Canstar Blue considers plan features that are important to consumers in the calculation of the Value Rank, however, not every feature is included.
Canstar Blue’s Internet comparison tool allows consumers to compare:
|Plan Type||Eligibility Criteria||Description|
|NBN Fixed Line||Must be an NBN Fixed Line Plan||NBN plans which utilise the physical line running to the premises (FTTB, FTTC, FTTN, FTTP and HFC) are considered.|
|Wireless Broadband||Must be a Wireless Broadband Plan on the 4G or 5G network||Wireless Broadband plans which utilise the 4G or 5G mobile networks are considered.|
Canstar Blue takes into account plan type on internet plans. NBN plans’ data allowances and download speeds are also taken into account. The following combination of variables determine the plan requirements for each profile:
|Internet Type||Data||Download Speed*|
|NBN||10 GB or more
200 GB or more
500 GB or more
1000 GB or more
|12 Mbps or higher
25 Mbps or higher
50 Mbps or higher
100 Mbps or higher
250 Mbps or higher
1000 Mbps or higher
*Download speeds refer to the theoretical maximum possible download speed available on a plan.
“All Wireless Broadband plans are considered in a single profile, regardless of data allowance and download speed.
The Value Rank is determined by the Price Score and Feature Score. Canstar ranks Internet plans based on value for money. The Value Rank takes into account a plan’s estimated cost (the ‘Price Score’) and features offered (the ‘Feature Score’) as compared to the market. The plans that are lower in cost and have a higher Feature Score will be ranked higher than plans which have a higher cost and a lower Feature Score.
Plans are ordered on the comparison table by Value Rank (i.e. total score), which incorporates a Price Score weighted at 70% and a Feature Score weighted at 30%.
Below is an example of how the Value Rank score is derived, using the figures from the Price Score and Feature Score.
The Price Score is calculated based on a comparison of a plan’s average monthly cost compared to the cost of the plans available in the market over a 24-month period.
The following is a general representation for calculating the average monthly cost of a plan:
The following assumptions are applied when calculating the average monthly cost:
|Period||The average monthly cost is calculated over a 24-month period.|
|Cost of Plan||The total cost of the plan over a 24-month period. Assumes plan costs will not change during the calculation period. Where a plan cost is upfront (incl. any associated discounts), this will also be considered.|
|Cost of Modem & Delivery||The applicable charge of a modem and any delivery fee that may be applied.|
|Additional Fees||Any initial account setup fees, activation fees, and ongoing fees not already considered in the cost of the plan, or cost of modem, are considered over the period outlined.|
|Discounts||Discounts or credits that may be applied to the plan, either at signup, for a defined period, or ongoing. This does not include conditional discounts, such as, but not limited to: bundle discounts (bundle mobile and internet to receive a discount), discounts which require a reference code on sign-up, etc.|
In the Wireless Broadband profile, a 10% price premium is applied to the monthly plan cost of products that offer only 4G mobile network coverage (i.e. no 5G coverage). This price adjustment is applied to account for the increased costs associated with a plan having access to the higher speeds available on the 5G network.
Canstar Blue’s Internet Feature Score uses a unique methodology that compares the functionality and flexibility of providers and their plans. Over 100 features are captured on each plan and grouped into three categories as outlined below:
The plan with the highest Feature Score is allocated the maximum score, with all remaining products within the profile indexed against it.
|Customer Service & Support||40%|
|Enquiries||35%||Availability of call centre, store, online support, support for billing and enquiries, technical support, etc.|
|Self Service||35%||Access previous bills, usage insights, check data balances, etc.|
|Customer Service Satisfaction||20%||Score out of 10 from Canstar Blue’s Customer Satisfaction (if no score, then average).|
|Research, Tools and Education||10%||Accessibility to educational material, tools and calculators, FAQs, and community forums.|
|Speeds||50%||NBN: Typical evening speed is indexed against profile requirement for Internet download speed. Typical evening speeds which are greater than or equal to the minimum user requirement receive the maximum score.
Wireless Broadband: The maximum download speed available. Download speeds which are greater than or equal to 250Mbps receive the maximum score.
|Availability/Network Coverage||30%||NBN: The NBN types that a plan is available on.
Wireless Broadband: Percentage of population network coverage and network bandwidth.
|Data Inclusions||10%||Monthly data allowance inclusions (‘x amount’ GB per month, or, Unlimited).|
|Additional Inclusions||10%||Entertainment and fixed-line phone plan bundle inclusions, standard local, national, and international call inclusions to land-line and mobile.|
|Billing & Payments||25%|
|Options & Charges||50%||Ability to pay via various channels (e.g. BPAY, Direct Debit, Credit Card, cheque, etc.) and fees that may apply.|
|Alerts & Reminders||30%||Payment reminders, outstanding bill alerts, SMS alerts, etc.|
|Contract Terms||20%||Considers the duration of and flexibility in the contract or renewal period.|
The feature categories are displayed on Canstar Blue’s comparison tool as a rounded number between 1 & 10. The unweighted scores of the feature categories are used for this display purpose.
We endeavour to include the majority of product providers in the market and to compare the product features most relevant to consumers in our ratings. However, this process is not always possible and it may be that not every product in the market is included in the rating nor every feature compared that is relevant to you.
Canstar monitors changes on an ongoing basis, and the Value Rank, Price Score and Feature Scores of each plan are fully re-calculated every day.
Canstar ranks Internet plans based on value for money. The Value Rank takes into account a plans’ average monthly cost and features offered as compared to the market. The plans that are lower in cost and have a higher Feature Score will be ranked higher than plans which have higher cost and a lower Feature Score.