Over two thirds of NBN users now on faster plans

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has released its latest report on the wholesale NBN market, with its findings showing more and more Australians are supercharging their broadband speeds.

The ACCC’s new Wholesale Market Indicators Report covers the quarter between September and December of 2020, tallying telco data to provide a snapshot into the services NBN Co supplies to broadband providers (that’s telcos such as Telstra, Optus, TPG and iiNet).

While this report doesn’t look at the plans and connections offered by NBN providers to customers and businesses, it does deliver an overall view on speed tiers, connection types and overall number of services operated by the telcos themselves, which in turn indicates which speeds and plans are most popular with Australian NBN users.

ACCC: Australians want faster NBN

According to the ACCC, there are now over 8.1 million Australian homes and businesses connected to the NBN, with 279,347 coming on board in the last quarter – around the time that the NBN rollout was declared complete by the Australian Government.

Over those 8 million-plus connections, almost 68% – or just under 5.5 million – are on plans with maximum speeds of 50Mbps or faster. As of December last year, this included 4,200, 757 connected on NBN 50 plans, and 1,292,305 connected to plans with speeds equal to or greater than 100Mbps.

Compare those figures to three years ago, when just 16.2% of fixed line connections were on speed tiers of 50Mbps and up. In December 2017, only 559,807 connections were considered to be ‘high speed’ as per the below table, with a massive 83.8% of services on slower plans of 25Mbps or less.

 

Table showing number of connections across NBN speed tiers
Image: ACCC

Back in 2019, we also looked at the sharp uptake in faster NBN connections, when more than 2.7 million connections – or 56% of total services provided – were on plans of 50Mbps and up. Two years on, and with even faster plans available to residential customers (namely NBN 250 and NBN 1000), the gap between ‘slow’ and ‘fast’ NBN continues to narrow – particularly as high-speed NBN plans become more affordable.

“Most customers now use the higher speed tiers, which is a result of more retail service providers promoting higher speed plans,” said ACCC Chair Rod Sims in response to this quarter’s report.

“NBN Co’s new incentives to retail service providers, such as its ‘Focus on Fast’ promotion, is welcome as many Australians now work and study from home at least some of the time.”

NBN Co has launched several campaigns to encourage both providers and customers to move to faster speed tiers, such as its Hot 100 wholesale discount promotion in early 2020, and the launch of a new, cheaper NBN 100/20 speed tier with slightly slower upload speeds.

However, the nation-wide lockdowns in 2020 may have also played a part in more Aussies upgrading their plan speeds, as millions of families transitioned to working and studying from home. The increase in time online saw many of us look to speed up our connections, and led to NBN Co offering free wholesale capacity boosts to allow providers to offer less congested services at no extra cost.

How to save on a fast NBN plan

Ongoing introductory discounts implemented by NBN providers have given new customers a good reason to get on board with a faster internet plan. If you’re considering upgrading to NBN 50, NBN 100, or even NBN 250 or 1000, there’s a range of money-saving deals available right now to make the transition a little easier on your wallet, including six or 12-month price cuts from Telstra, Dodo, Optus, TPG, Superloop, Kogan and Tangerine.

NBN 50 & NBN 100 deals

The following table shows a selection of published cheap Premium Evening Speed (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 to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

The following table shows a selection of published cheap Standard Plus Evening Speed (NBN 50) 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 to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

NBN 250 & NBN 1000 deals

If you’re looking for something even faster, you can also save when switching to super and ultra-fast NBN plans from Aussie Broadband, Kogan, Superloop and Telstra. These offers are only available to customers with Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) and selected Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC) NBN connection types, so you’ll need to check your address with your provider at sign-up to see if your home qualifies.

NBN 1000 Plans Compared

The following table shows selected published NBN 1000 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of their standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest, then alphabetically. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of providers. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.

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

Unlimited NBN Ultrafast

  • NBN 1000/50Mbps speed
  • Optional WiFi hub+ modem for $149 upfront plus $10 P&H
  • Special offer: $105 for the first six months, then $135 ongoing. Terms apply.

min. cost $135 over one month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $135Advertised Data^^/billing period
Kogan Logo

Diamond Unlimited

  • Home Ultrafast Speed (NBN 1000/50)
  • Modem available for $69 upfront

min. cost $139.90 for first month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $139.90Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
Superloop logo

Ultrafast 1000/50

  • Ultrafast 1000/50 Speed (NBN 1000)
  • Special offer: $119.95 for the first six months, then $139.95 ongoing. Ends 31/10/21, terms apply.

min. cost $139.95 over one month

3TBMax Data**/billing period $139.95Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
TPG Logo

NBN Home Ultrafast

  • Home Ultrafast Speed (NBN 1000)
  • $0 setup fee on no lock-in contracts
  • Special offer: $114.99 per month for first 6 months, then $144.99 ongoing. Terms apply.

min. cost $144.99 over first month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $144.99Advertised Cost^^/billing period

Power House

  • Home Ultrafast Speed (NBN 1000/50)
  • Optional modem from $149 ($15 P&H)
  • Special offer: First month free when you use code ‘FASTMONTH‘ at checkout. Terms apply.

min. cost $149 over first month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $149Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
iiNet Logo

NBN1000 Liimitless

  • Home Ultrafast Speed (NBN 1000/50)
  • Special offer: $119.99 for the first six months, then $149.99 ongoing. Terms apply.

min. cost $149.99 over one month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $149.99Advertised Cost^^/billing period
Internode

NBN1000 Unlimited

  • Home Ultrafast Speed (NBN 1000/50)
  • Special offer: $119.99 for the first six months, then $149.99 ongoing. Terms apply.

min. cost $149.99 over one month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $149.99Advertised Cost^^/billing period
Telstra Logo

Ultrafast NBN

  • Ultrafast Speed (NBN 1000)
  • Typical evening speed: 250Mbps
  • $216 modem (free when you stay connected for 24 months)
  • Special offer: $99 connection fee waived (online only)
  • Special offer: 3 months free BINGE Standard.
  • Unlimited local, national & mobile calls included

min. cost $4,419 over 24 months

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $180Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
View all NBN plans listed on Canstar Blue

NBN 250 Plans Compared

The following table shows selected published unlimited NBN 250 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of their standard monthly cost, from lowest to highest, then alphabetically. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of providers. This is a selection of products with links to referral partners.

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

elite mates Home Superfast BYO

  • Superfast 250/25 Evening Speed (NBN 250)
  • Special offer: $89 per month for the first 6 months, then $109 per month ongoing. Terms apply, offer available until withdrawn.

min. cost $109 over one month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $109Advertised Cost^^/billing period
iPrimus Logo

NBN 250

  • Home Superfast Speed (NBN 250)
  • $70 setup fee
  • Modem included ($15 P&H)
  • PAYG calls

min. cost $185 over first month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $115Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
MyRepublic Logo

Unlimited NBN Superfast

  • NBN 250/25Mbps speed
  • Optional WiFi hub+ modem for $149 upfront plus $10 P&H
  • Special offer: $95 for the first six months, then $115 ongoing. Terms apply.

min. cost $115 over one month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $115Advertised Data^^/billing period
Southern Phones Logo

nbnSuperfast

  • Superfast 250/25 Evening Speed (NBN 250)
  • Optional WiFi modem $99 upfront

min. cost $115 over one month plan period

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $115Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go to Site
Kogan Logo

Platinum Unlimited

  • Home Superfast Speed (NBN 250/25)
  • Modem available for $69 upfront

min. cost $119.90 for first month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $119.90Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
Superloop logo

Unlimited Superfast 250/25

  • Home Superfast Speed (NBN 250/25)
  • Special offer: $99.95 for the first six months, then $119.95 ongoing. Offer expires 31/10/21, terms apply.

min. cost $119.95 over one month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $119.95Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
TPG Logo

NBN Home Superfast

  • Home Superfast Speed (NBN 250)
  • $0 setup fee on no lock-in contracts
  • Special offer: $94.99 per month for first 6 months, then $124.99 ongoing. Terms apply.

min. cost $124.99 over first month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $124.99Advertised Cost^^/billing period

Power User

  • Home Superfast Speed (NBN 250/25)
  • Optional modem from $149 ($15 P&H)
  • Special offer: First month free when you use code ‘FASTMONTH‘ at checkout. Terms apply.

min. cost $129 over first month

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

NBN250 Unlimited

  • Home Superfast Speed (NBN 250/25)
  • Special offer: $99.99 for the first six months, then $129.99 ongoing. Terms apply.

min. cost $129.99 over one month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $129.99Advertised Cost^^/billing period
iiNet Logo

NBN250 Liimitless

  • Home Superfast Speed (NBN 250/25)
  • Special offer: $99.99 for the first six months, then $129.99 ongoing. Terms apply.

min. cost $129.99 over one month

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $129.99Advertised Cost^^/billing period
Telstra Logo

Superfast NBN

  • Superfast Speed (NBN 250)
  • Typical evening speed: 215Mbps
  • $216 modem (free when you stay connected for 24 months)
  • Special offer: $99 connection fee waived (online only)
  • Special offer: Get 3 months BINGE standard subscription, terms apply. Offer available until withdrawn.
  • Unlimited local, national & mobile calls included

min. cost $3,459 over 24 months

UnlimitedMax Data**/billing period $140Advertised Cost^^/billing period Go To Site
View all NBN plans listed on Canstar Blue

Telstra still Australia’s biggest NBN provider

In addition to recording the speed of connections offered by providers, the ACCC’S report also looked at the market share of major telcos. Telstra continues to dominate the Australian broadband space, with 45.5% of NBN services connected to a Telstra plan. In second place is TPG, with around 24.5%, followed by Optus (15.5%), Dodo and iPrimus (7.1%), and Aussie Broadband (4.2%).

The report also broke down the NBN technology types most in use across the country. As of December 2020, over 1.5 million Australians were connected via FTTP, and 1.9 million through HFC – meaning there’s a huge number of Australians who may qualify for superfast NBN plans. However, Fibre to the Node (FTTN) still remains the most commonly used form of fixed-line NBN connection, accounting for well over 3 million residential and business services Australia-wide.

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