There’s an unprecedented level of telco competition out there these days. No longer are you bound by the likes of Optus, Telstra, Vodafone or Amaysim. Now, there are dozens of mobile phone and broadband service providers all vying for your attention, with even more spawned out of the NBN and the success it can bring for start-ups. Various overseas telco companies have also got in on the fun in recent years, whether it’s buying out Aussie brands or launching their own products across the country. So, which telcos are Australian-owned, and does it really matter?
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NBN offers you might like
The following table shows a selection of sponsored unlimited data Standard Plus Evening Speed (NBN 50), and Premium Evening Speed (NBN 100) plans on Canstar Blue’s database with links to referral partners.
Typical evening speed of 96Mbps
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Typical evening speed of 96Mbps
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Typical evening speed of 96Mbps
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Unlimited Standard Plus Evening Speed (NBN 50) Plans
The following table shows a selection of published unlimited Standard Plus Evening Speed (NBN 50) plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost (excluding discounts), from the lowest to highest, and then by alphabetical order of provider. Use our comparison tool above to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.
Unlimited Premium Evening Speed (NBN 100) Plans
The table below 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 to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.
Telco Ownership 2023
The table below shows which telcos are Australian-owned and which are foreign-owned.
|Company||Telco services offered||Ownership|
|Accord||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Activ8me||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|AGL||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Aussie Broadband||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Australia Post||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Bendigo Telco||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Dodo||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Exetel||Internet & Phone||Australian (owned by Superloop)|
|Flip||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|GoodTel||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|iPrimus||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Kogan||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Mate||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Mint Telecom||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Moose Mobile||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|More||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Pennytel||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Southern Phone||Internet & Phone||Australian (owned by AGL)|
|Spintel||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Superloop||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Tangerine||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|TeleChoice||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Yomojo||Internet & Phone||Australian|
|Belong||Internet & Phone||Partly Australian-owned (owned by Telstra)|
|Origin Internet||Internet||Partly-Australian owned|
|Telstra||Internet & Phone||Partly Australian-owned|
|ALDI Mobile||Phone||Foreign (owned by ALDI)|
|Amaysim||Internet & Phone||Foreign (owned by Optus)|
|Felix||Phone||Foreign (owned by TPG)|
|GOMO||Phone||Foreign (owned by Optus)|
|iiNet||Internet & Phone||Foreign (owned by TPG)|
|Internode||Internet & Phone||Foreign (owned by TPG)|
|Lebara Mobile||Phone||Foreign (owned by TPG)|
|Optus||Internet & Phone||Foreign|
|TPG||Internet & Phone||Foreign|
|Vaya||Phone||Foreign (owned by Amaysim/Optus)|
|Vodafone||Internet & Phone||Foreign (owned by TPG)|
Last updated, April 2023.
NBN plans at a glance
Whether you’re looking for an Aussie NBN provider, or just happy to bag a bargain from anyone, here are some of the best deals on our database right now.
Unlimited NBN 100 Plans
The following table shows a selection of published unlimited NBN 100 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest, and then by alphabetical order of provider. Use our comparison tool above to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.
Unlimited NBN 50 Plans
The following table shows a selection of published unlimited NBN 50 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from lowest to highest, and then by alphabetical order of provider. Use our comparison tool above to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.
Unlimited NBN 25 Plans
The following table shows a selection of published unlimited NBN 25 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest, and then by alphabetical order of provider. Use our comparison tool above to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.
Unlimited NBN 12 Plans
The following table shows a selection of published unlimited NBN 12 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest, and then by alphabetical order of provider. Use our comparison tool above to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.
About these Telcos
There’s a story behind every telco – stories of mergers, acquisitions and closures. Below we’ll be diving into each provider and discussing the history of these brands.
Founded in 2005, Activ8me specialises in connecting rural, regional and remote Aussies to the internet, offering a wide range of internet types and plans. It offers SkyMuster satellite internet plans along with fixed wireless NBN and standard fibre NBN plans.
While more commonly known for its energy plans, AGL does offer NBN and postpaid phone plans as well, with bonuses available for AGL energy customers. This is ideal for those who like the idea of bundling their energy and internet/mobile plans with one provider, with AGL energy customers eligible for some of the cheapest NBN 50 and NBN 100 plans currently on the market.
ALDI Mobile operates in conjunction with the supermarket of the same name. It operates on the Telstra network, and you can pick up ALDI SIM cards at the checkout of ALDI stores across Australia. Offering phone plans as well as data-only options, ALDI Mobile has been the recipient of Canstar Blue’s Most Satisfied Customers award for mobile broadband for four years running.
Amaysim caused a racket some years ago when it became one of the first MVNOs to drastically up the ante in the world of mobile phone plans. Founded in 2010 by a group of Aussies, Amaysim joined with European MVNO ‘Simyo’. In March 2015, it offered 4G data for the first time, and now enjoys success as one of the most popular MVNOs out there, with a competitive range of prepaid mobile phone and data plans on the Optus 4G Network. Headquartered in Sydney, Amaysim was acquired by Optus in early 2021.
Aussie Broadband is an Australian-founded and based internet service and mobile plan provider, operating out of Victoria since 2003. It’s one of the newer internet providers that has proven its worth through the rollout of the NBN, but as it’s now ASX-listed, Australian ownership isn’t guaranteed. However, Aussie Broadband has a solid rep for great customer service, it received Canstar Blue’s Most Satisfied Customers award for NBN Providers in 2019 and 2020, coming in second place in 2022.
Australia Post offers both SIM-only mobile plans and a range of NBN plans, as well as an International Roaming plan for use in over 90 countries around the world. It operates on the Optus network, and SIMs are available for purchase online or in Australia Post stores around the country.
Belong is a broadband and mobile company that’s owned entirely by Telstra and was founded in 2013. Acting as a specialist provider of Telstra services with different options on offer — like more affordable plans, with the trade-off of not having the same entertainment provisions — Belong offers some terrific value, especially for NBN customers.
Boost Mobile is an Australian-owned prepaid mobile provider that is partnered with Telstra, although it is its own brand. Boost began in 2000, with a focus on young Australians and getting them connected. Much like Belong, Boost is a no-nonsense mobile provider, but still offers large data inclusions and extras such as international calls and data-free music streaming. It is the only MVNO to have access to the full Telstra 4G mobile network.
Catch Connect is a mobile service provider and Australian owned service, operating on the Optus network. Its parent company, Catch.com.au, is an online retailer offering daily deals across a wide range of categories and brands, however it was bought by Wesfarmers in recent years. Catch started offering prepaid mobile phone plans in 2018.
Circles.Life is a Singapore-owned telco now operating in Australia, using the Optus network. It is entirely digital, boasting great value for customers who want a contract-free option, however these plans do not include extras like international calls.
Coles Mobile is a mobile provider operating in conjunction with the supermarket of the same name. It’s publicly listed on the ASX with a long Australian history, and operates through the Optus network, offering some great value you can pick up at the checkout.
Dodo is a name that would be familiar to many Australians. Around for over 15 years now, Dodo has always been an internet service provider (ISP) but now offers a range of cheap mobile phone plans, operating off the Optus network. In 2013, Dodo was acquired by M2 Group, an Australian-owned conglomerate focusing on telecommunications. You’ll find that a lot of companies are owned by this group, including iPrimus. In 2016, the M2 group changed its name to Vocus Communications.
Originally starting as a family-owned business, Exetel is now owned by the Superloop Group, offering a range of both internet and mobile phone plans at reasonable prices. In 2022, it won the Canstar Blue Innovation Excellence Award for its Home Secure product, and again in 2023 for its My Speed Boost product.
Felix, which is part of the TPG Telecom, has a unique approach to its mobile plans, with only a single SIM-only plan on offer. The thing that does make Felix stand out, however, is that its products are certified carbon neutral, by meeting the eligibility criteria listed under the Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard. The telco also endeavours to plant a tree for every month a customer stays on the plan, a project that is again backed by the Climate Active government initiative.
Flip is an Australian internet provider that emerged during the NBN rollout, founded in 2015. It offers some of the best value NBN 12 and NBN 25 plans, and also offers mobile plans. It has a lot to offer somebody looking for value without all the bells and whistles of entertainment packages. That being said, Flip also offers ‘Flip IPTV’ which delivers more than 100 TV channels from countries across the world.
Foxtel was founded in 1995 and is a known name in Australia, but it isn’t entirely Australian-owned, considering its half ownership between Telstra and News Corp. This famous TV provider collaboration between Telstra and Foxtel offers NBN plans coupled to entertainment bundles, similar to Telstra’s optional Foxtel TV package add ons.
Founded in the early 1990s out of a Perth garage, iiNet has expanded to become one of the largest ISPs in Australia. Throughout the years, it has acquired some smaller ISPs – namely Westnet and Internode – but in September 2015, iiNet was itself purchased by TPG in a big-money merger worth an estimated $1.5 billion. In 2020, iiNet’s parent company TPG merged with Vodafone. iiNet has a range of good-value broadband plans, but it also provides a modest offering of competitive mobile phone plans on the Vodafone network.
Internode is one of the few true ‘Aussie battler’ start-up success stories. The company was founded by Simon Hackett in 1991 in Adelaide, then a Computer Science graduate. He built a name for himself by being one of the first in the ‘Internet of things’ timeline. With a mate, he was one of the first in the world to connect an appliance to the internet – a Sunbeam toaster. Since then Internode has been acquired by iiNet – in 2011 for over $100 million. This makes Internode effectively a subsidiary of TPG, and now Vodafone as the two brands have since merged. Today, it’s a popular provider of all things internet, including NBN, ADSL, business internet, web hosting and VOIP services. The company is still based in Adelaide.
iPrimus is an Australian-owned business and first started selling telecom services in Australia to residents in 1997, originally providing business solutions in 1993. Since then, it has garnered success as a smaller ISP and mobile provider through the Optus network. It is now owned by the Vocus Communications group.
Kogan is best known for being an online retailer, however it does offer both mobile and NBN plans as well. The brand promises to offer competitive prices and super-fast NBN speeds.
Lebara Mobile is a worldwide, budget-focused MVNO. In Australia, it runs off the Vodafone 4G network, but it operates in seven other countries. The idea for Lebara – a telco targeting the college-age demographic – was born in Norway, and today its headquarters are based in London. However, Lebara is now part of the TPG Telecom group as the brand is licenced rather than being part of the existing company overseas.
LycaMobile is a phone provider that was founded in the United Kingdom and is therefore foreign owned. It services countries all over the world and found its way into the Australian mobile market through Telstra’s network, coming to Australia in 2010, and today using Telstra’s 4G coverage. It could be a great provider to go with if you do lots of international calling.
Mate is an Australian-owned internet provider, founded during the NBN boom. It has been operating since 2015 and offers some good value internet and mobile plans, using the Telstra mobile network. It’s owned by the same people as those behind Barefoot.
Moose Mobile is an Australian-owned business founded in 2016, operating on the Optus 4G network, and is based in Brisbane. In 2022, Moose Mobile was bought by broadband provider Swoop, which is also Australian-owned. Moose provides some great value no-contract and 12-month mobile plans, as well as mobile broadband and NBN plans.
More is part-owned by Commonwealth Bank, offering benefits for CommBank customers who choose to sign up to their mobile and internet plans. Based in South Melbourne, the telco claims to be proudly Australian-owned, and offers a small but competitive range of broadband and SIM-only mobile products, with plenty of self-service features.
Myown Tel offers internet plans on a variety of networks across the country, including NBN, the LBN and OPENetworks – keeping things simple by having basically identical plans across the different technology types.
Optus is considered one of the ‘big three’ Aussie telcos, alongside Telstra and Vodafone. It is one of the few telcos with in-person stores and has the second largest network coverage in Australia. Born out of the government-owned ‘Aussat’ before privatisation, Optus can trace its roots back to 1981, but it wasn’t until the 90s that Optus really came into its own. In 2001, Optus was wholly acquired by Singtel, the Singapore-based telco company. Optus’ headquarters is still in Sydney, but ownership by Singtel means that at least some of its profits are now going offshore. But that doesn’t mean you should give Optus the cold shoulder – it frequently outplays Telstra in the value stakes with its broadband and mobile phone plans.
Origin Internet is an expansion from Origin Energy, the integrated energy company that has been servicing Australia since 2000. With shareholders from all over the globe, it is a partially Aussie-owned company that offers electricity, gas and broadband.
Southern Phone has been in operation since 2002 and offers a range of personal and business telco services, with a particular focus on regional Australian communities. It also offers mobile handsets available to be both bought outright and on a plan. Southern Phone is now owned by AGL.
SpinTel is rather patriotic about its heritage. The telco has been around since 1996, and has won a litany of awards in its 20-year tenure. It has a range of mobile phone plans, as well as NBN plans. In fact, its NBN plans are often some of the cheapest going around. SpinTel apparently prides itself on customer service and its headquarters is in Sydney. From humble beginnings, SpinTel has grown into a ‘true blue’ telco.
Superloop was founded in 2014, offering internet plans for residential, business and wholesale customers in Australia and Singapore, and previously offered services in Hong Kong. The telco offers a range of plans on a month-to-month basis, including high speed NBN plans.
Tangerine is a small internet provider that has certainly risen above the rest of the pack of NBN sellers formed from the rollout of the new high-speed network. It was formed in 2013 as an Australian business, supported by Vocus infrastructure, and is now, along with More, part owned by the Commonwealth Bank. It operates out of Melbourne.
Telechoice is one of the oldest MVNOs in this list, founded in 1995. Originally founded as a dealership, TeleChoice expanded to offer its own plans. Now it gets the best of both worlds, with a handful of ‘brick and mortar’ stores across Australia, as well as a range of great value postpaid mobile plans on Telstra’s networks. TeleChoice encourages you to commit to a longer-term contract by offering more data and inclusions for the same price or cheaper. Distinctly Aussie, TeleChoice is headquartered in Melbourne.
Originating at Federation in 1901 as a government department, Telstra was born out of the need for a centralised telecommunications company. It was a wholly government-owned company until the 1990s but was fully privatised back in 2006. Since then, Telstra has rapidly expanded to offer a comprehensive suite of broadband and mobile phone plans including prepaid and postpaid deals. While it doesn’t always enjoy the best reputation, you can’t help but give credit to Telstra for playing a huge part in the telco landscape of Australia. Unlike many of its competitors, Telstra is its own entity, headquartered in Melbourne. It’s also publicly listed, trading on the ASX. This means it could have shareholders from all over the world.
As one of the largest telcos in Australia, TPG certainly has its fingers in all kinds of pies. In recent years, it has shot to prominence, culminating in the acquisition of iiNet in 2015. TPG – or Total Peripherals Group – as it is almost never referred to, is headquartered in Sydney. It offers competitive mobile phone plans as a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) on the Vodafone network. It also, of course, provides a comprehensive range of broadband plans, including some of the cheapest NBN contracts around. In 2020, TPG completed its merger with Vodafone to create TPG Telecom LTD, which operates a range of smaller telcos including iiNet, Felix and Internode.
As a whole, Vodafone is one of the largest telecommunications companies on the planet, operating in no less than 26 different countries. The Vodafone Group was founded in 1991, and quickly rose to becoming a huge British multinational with headquarters in London. Back to Australia, and Vodafone is one of the three main telcos with its own network. It has a range of phone plans, from prepaid, month-to-month and handset plans. Its Australian venture combined with its worldwide endeavours makes it one of the top companies listed on the FTSE 100, and Vodafone is also listed on the NASDAQ. In 2020, Vodafone merged with Aussie broadband giant TPG to create TPG Telecom, and expanded its portfolio to include brands such as iiNet, Internode and Westnet.
Woolworths mobile is an Australian-owned mobile provider and ‘supermarket telco’ operating on the Telstra network. Unlike its direct competition of ALDI Mobile and Coles Mobile, it offers phone plans rather than just SIM plans, including new-release phones from Samsung and OPPO, and provides postpaid and prepaid mobile options.
Does it matter if your telco is Australian-owned?
While it’s good to know about the ownership of your phone or internet provider, it is not the be all and end all. Yes, it’s a bonus if your money stays in Australia and is invested in the local community, but it is also important that you pay a fair price and receive good customer service. A foreign-owned telco is just as capable of providing those things as an Aussie owned and operated one.
Therefore, whether or not a telco is Australian-owned shouldn’t be the only thing you consider when comparing phone or internet plans.