Southern Phone Mobile Plans Review
Australia is known for being a land of vast, empty plains and remote communities. While Aussies located in the main cities can enjoy mobile coverage and fast internet speeds, those in our rural and remote areas haven’t been as lucky. That’s where Southern Phone has really stepped up.
Southern Phone’s main focus is on providing phone and internet services to regional Australia. While the telco had previously offered plans on the Telstra and Optus networks, it has shifted focus to offer a range of month-to-month and 12-month plans on the Optus 4G network only.
The telco was founded in 2002, after receiving a grant of just under $5 million from the Australian Government’s Networking the Nation scheme. The aim was to provide affordable options for Australians in regional communities. Southern Phone is dedicated to only allowing local councils to become shareholders in the company, meaning those dividends go back into helping the community. So just what does Southern Phone have to offer when it comes to mobile phone plans?
Southern Phone plans at a glance
While Southern Phone’s main emphasis is on SIM-only plans, the telco does offer a selection of mobile phones, including Samsung. You can choose to buy your phone outright (which then requires you to select the a plan to bundle with it), or you can select your phone repayment period and bundle with a plan of your choice.
Operating on the Optus 3G and 4G networks, Southern Phone’s postpaid Green plans are available as 12-month or month-to-month plans. There are five 12-month plans, starting at $11 for 1GB of data, and going up to $40 for 30GB of data and all with unlimited standard national calls and SMS.
If you’d prefer the flexibility of a month-to-month plan, there are four options to choose from, but you’ll get less data for your money than if you commit for the 12 months. These plans start at $12 for 500MB of data and go up to $50 for 15GB, with all plans including unlimited standard national calls and SMS.
The following table shows all published Southern Phone 12-month postpaid plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of cost from 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.
What does Southern Phone offer?
While Southern Phone doesn’t offer much in the way of entertainment bonuses or international call inclusions, that isn’t what this telco is about. The emphasis is on providing service to regional communities often neglected by other telcos. Because of that, the plans are kept simple, with unlimited talk and text along with a small selection of mobile phones. If you want to keep in touch with friends and family overseas, there are no international call or SMS inclusions on these plans, however call and SMS rates are available on the Southern Phone website.
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Southern Phone network and coverage
Using the Optus 3G and 4G networks means Southern Phone can reach around 98.5% of the population. Optus has also committed to building more towers and expanding coverage to regional areas as part of the Australian Government’s Mobile Black Spot Program. This means more regional areas should see stronger and more consistent mobile coverage. To check the network coverage in your area, visit the Southern Phone website.
Features and bonuses
Southern Phone keeps phone plans simple, but there are plenty of choices when it comes to postpaid plans and plans with handsets.
- Unlimited national calls and SMS: All of Southern Phone’s plans come with unlimited standard national calls and SMS. This is great news if you don’t use much data, as you can opt for a lower plan without being restricted on calls and text.
- Freedom to change plans: The no lock-in plans allow you to change your service at any time with no charge, and if you’re on a 12-month plan, you can change to a higher value option at any time at no charge.
- Phones on plans: As one of the few smaller telcos offering mobile handsets with plans, Southern Phone is a good option if you want a new device, but don’t want to pay the prices charged by the big three telcos. You can also buy your smartphone outright and then bundle with a plan, which isn’t often available through other telcos.
Southern Phone Green Month-To-Month plans
The month-to-month Green postpaid plans include unlimited standard national calls and text, with data inclusions increasing with each price tier. The Green 12 plan will get you 500MB of data, the 22 plan gives you 3GB, for the 35 plan you’ll get 10GB of data and the 50 plan will get you 15GB.
Southern Phone Green 12-Month plans
If you’re willing to commit to a 12-month plan, you’ll get a little more value for your money and five options to choose from. While all 12-month Green plans include unlimited standard national calls and text, you’ll get more data on these plans than the month-to-month equivalents. The Green 11 plan gives you 1GB of data, the 16 plan includes 3GB, the 22 plan has 7GB of included data, the 32 plan includes 16GB and the 40 plan has 30GB of data.
If you’re getting a new handset through Southern Phone, you’ll get to choose your phone plan from the 16, 22, 32 and 40 Green 12-month plans, however you will be on a 24-month contract.
Southern Phone contact details/customer support
Need some help with your Southern Phone plan or service? The telco offers several contact and support options, including:
- General customer support: 13 14 64
- Live chat
- Contact form
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SouthernPhone/
- Southern Phone app for both iPhone and Android
How does Southern Phone compare?
Southern Phone isn’t the only telco offering Optus network coverage at lower prices. The following providers also use parts of the Optus 3G and 4G networks.
- Moose Mobile
- OVO Mobile
- Catch Connect
- Coles Mobile
Is Southern Phone a good deal?
Southern Phone’s commitment to providing mobile service to regional areas is a noble cause, especially its dedication to keeping the company regionally owned and operated. The telco provides choice to those in regional areas, where once there wasn’t much choice at all.
The lack of international call and text inclusions could be a negative for some, along with the lack of global roaming options. While many people do tend to buy a SIM overseas, it’s handy to have the option to use your existing SIM and phone number while you travel, so you should consider how much of an impact this might have on any future travel plans.
If you’re looking for simple postpaid phone plans with decent talk, text and data inclusions, Southern Phone does have some good options to choose from, especially if you’re looking for a new handset. But it’s important to do your research before jumping into a new plan. If you live outside of the major cities, you might find there are more providers available, which gives you even more choice than ever.
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What do customers think about Southern Phone mobile plans?
In 2019, Australians gave Southern Phone 5 out of 5 stars for Overall Customer Satisfaction in postpaid mobile plans.