iPhone 8 and 8 Plus Phone Plans

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Apple’s new batch of smartphones have reinvigorated interest in the brand in light of increased competition. The iPhone X, iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are certainly exciting new phones, but give serious thought to a range of plans before diving in for the next two years. In this article, Canstar Blue compares plans for the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus. So what are you options?

  • You can buy your preferred new iPhone 8, or 8 Plus, outright and find a good SIM-only plan. Prices for the iPhone 8 start at $1,079.
  • You can sign up to a handset phone plan and gradually pay off your new phone in monthly installments, alongside your plan inclusions.

Both can be good options, but in this review we’ll focus on the handset plans offered with the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus. All of the plans featured below come with unlimited talk & text, plus varying amounts of data and other extra incentives. So, the big question is…

What are the best phone plans on the iPhone 8?

Vodafone provides the cheapest iPhone 8 plans in terms of ongoing monthly repayments. They start at around $59.97 each month, but for this you’ll be on a 36-month contract. If you’d like to pay off your device sooner, plans quickly escalate: the $35 Red Plan with an iPhone 8 on a 12-month contract will set you back $124.91 per month.

Starting prices with Optus and Telstra are a little higher, but these two telco giants are likely the best pick if you want bags full of entertainment features included in your bundle. Optus plans start from $80 each month on a standard two-year contract, while Telstra charges a minimum of $94 if you want to own the handset; however, you can save around $10 per month with either provider by leasing your device (more on that later).

The entry-level published plans for each telco are listed below (not including phone payments). Some may include a link to the retailer for further details, and are sponsored products.

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

$35 Red Plan

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS

min. cost $35 per month plus any device repayments

2GBMax Data**/billing period $35Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Optus Logo

$45 My Plan Flex

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Stream Optus Sport & Nat Geo data free
  • Stream Music data free
  • Double Data

min. cost $1080 over 24 month plan period

2GBMax Data**/billing period $45Advertised Data^^/billing period
Telstra Logo

$59 Small

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS

min. cost $1416 over 24 month plan period

3GBMax Data**/billing period $59Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

Vodafone iPhone 8 & iPhone 8 Plus Plans

Vodafone’s iPhone 8 plans are pretty interesting. Vodafone arguably offers the best flexibility across the Big Three, as it has separated plan and phone repayments. By doing this, you just have to pay for the phone repayment and can chop and change your plan as you like. This also means you can switch plan providers, but must keep paying Vodafone for the phone repayment. Different contract lengths are available – 12, 24 or 36 months, with no total price difference between the three.

  • For example, the minimum you’ll pay each month for the base iPhone 8 64GB on a 12-month payment plan is $89.91 (not including your Red plan). This works out to be $1079 over 12 months.
  • Contrast this with a 36-month contract, and your phone payment comes in at $29.97 per month, for a total cost of around $1,079 (again, not including your Red plan cost).
  • Vodafone’s base $35 Red plan comes with unlimited calls & texts plus 2GB data, and you can shop around as you see fit as the plan is not locked-in.

If you value a phone that’s not made for ants or tiny baby hands, the iPhone 8 Plus may be what you’re after. With Vodafone, total minimum prices over 12, 24 or 36 months work out to be about $1,229. This comprises of a $35 Red plan mated, to a $34.13 device repayment (over 36 months). Whatever path you choose – 12, 24 or 36 months – the end result is usually the same.

Generally, the priciest phone plan also comes with the most data. The most data you can expect is ‘unlimited’ with 80GB full-speed, for which you’ll be paying $80 per month (plus any device repayments). Overall, Vodafone benefits from having flexibility, with separation between plan and phone.

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

$35 Red Plan

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS

min. cost $35 per month plus any device repayments

2GBMax Data**/billing period $35Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$45 Red Plan

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS

min. cost $45 per month plus any device repayments

15GBMax Data**/billing period $45Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$60 Red Unlimited

  • Unlimited Data (capped to 1.5Mbps after 40GB)
  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • 10,000 Frequent Flyer Points

min. cost $60 per month plus any device repayments

Unlimited* Max Data**/billing period $60Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$80 Red Unlimited

  • Unlimited Data (capped to 1.5Mbps after 80GB)
  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • 20,000 Frequent Flyer Points

min. cost $80 per month plus any device repayments

Unlimited* Max Data**/billing period $80Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Vodafone Logo

$60 Red Plan

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • 10,000 Frequent Flyer Points

min. cost $60 per month plus any device repayments

40GBMax Data**/billing period $60Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

Optus iPhone 8 & iPhone 8 Plus Plans

If Optus is your telco of choice, iPhone 8 plans start from $70 per month ($45 plan, plus a $25 phone payment over 24 months). That’s if you want to own your phone at the end of the contract, rather than just lease it. Optus’ entry-level $45 plan includes just 2GB of data, but comes jam-packed with lots of entertainment perks:

  • All Optus iPhone 8 plans include subscriptions to Optus Sport and National Geographic, plus data-free music streaming with Google Music, iHeartRadio and Spotify.
  • Prices jump from $75 to $85 to $105 and $120+ a month as you add more data (up to 200GB) and beef up your entertainment and international calling inclusions.

Optus is a serious challenger to Telstra in the bonus features department, especially when it comes to live sports coverage; there is so much to choose from, it can actually get a little confusing. But Optus may shine through for English Premier League soccer fans. Optus plans also include some form of international credit as standard.

Optus’ iPhone 8 prices max out at $125 per month ($125 plan cost, plus $0 phone payment), or $3000 over a 24-month contract.. Overall, Telstra and Optus are the big boppers of the telco world, with the two of them trading blows to see who can come out as iPhone 8 champion.

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

$45 My Plan Plus

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Stream Optus Sport & Nat Geo data free
  • Stream Music data free
  • Double Data

min. cost $1080 over 24 month plan period

2GBMax Data**/billing period $45Advertised Data^^/billing period
Optus Logo

$65 My Plan Plus

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Stream Optus Sport & Nat Geo data free
  • Stream Music data free
  • Double Data

min. cost $1560 over 24 month plan period

10GBMax Data**/billing period $65Advertised Data^^/billing period
Optus Logo

$85 My Plan Plus

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Stream Optus Sport & Nat Geo data free
  • Stream Music data free
  • Double Data

min. cost $2040 over 24 month plan period

25GBMax Data**/billing period $85Advertised Data^^/billing period
Optus Logo

$105 My Plan Plus

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Stream Optus Sport & Nat Geo data free
  • Stream Music data free
  • Double Data

min. cost $2520 over 24 month plan period

100GBMax Data**/billing period $105Advertised Data^^/billing period
Optus Logo

$125 My Plan Plus

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Stream Optus Sport & Nat Geo data free
  • Stream Music data free

min. cost $3000 over 24 month plan period

200GBMax Data**/billing period $125Advertised Data^^/billing period
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

Telstra iPhone 8 & iPhone 8 Plus Plans

Telstra gives customers the option to lease or buy the iPhone 8, but for the sake of this comparison we’ll look at plans that actually result in you owning the handset at the end of the contract. Telstra iPhone 8 plans start from $94 per month over 24 months ($59 plan, plus a $35 phone payment), with prices gradually increasing as you add in more data or extra perks. Telstra’s Small iPhone 8 plan comes with a modest 3GB data, but there is plenty more on offer:

  • For a Medium plan with 10GB of data, expect to pay $79 a month plus a $19 device repayment ($98 each month in total).
  • Opt for Telstra’s Large, Extra Large, or Ultimate Unlimited plans  and you’ll get a Foxtel Now Starter Pack subscription.
  • The Ultimate Unlimited plan includes unlimited high-speed data, plus the Foxtel Now subscription and free international calls for $199 per month (include device costs).

Telstra clearly has the most costly iPhone 8 plans, but you can get an awful lot for your money- but be prepared for a big financial commitment. These Foxtel Now packages ordinarily cost about $10 per month, and having extra perks like Apple Music memberships only adds to the appeal of Telstra.

By siding with the largest telco in Australia, customers stand to receive more than just a phone plan – think of these phone plans as all-round entertainment packages.

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

$59 Small

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS

min. cost $1416 over 24 month plan period

3GBMax Data**/billing period $59Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

$79 Medium

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS

min. cost $1896 over 24 month plan period

10GBMax Data**/billing period $79Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

$99 Large

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • 24 month Foxtel Now subscription to 1 Foxtel Now Starter Pack

min. cost $2376 over 24 month plan period

30GBMax Data**/billing period $79Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

$129 Extra Large

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • 24 month Foxtel Now subscription to 1 Foxtel Now Starter Pack

min. cost $3096 over 24 month plan period

60GBMax Data**/billing period $129Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

$199 Ultimate

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • *Unlimited data offered with ‘the best speeds available’
  • 24 month Foxtel Now subscription to 1 Foxtel Now Starter Pack

min. cost $4776 over 24 month plan period

Unlimited*Max Data**/billing period $199Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

iPhone 8 Lease Plans

As mentioned above, Optus and Telstra both provide the opportunity to ‘lease’ the new iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, rather than buy it. In fact, they seem pretty determined to guide customers this way, with their respective websites showing leasing plans as the default option when you go to compare. This could lead to confusion if you’re not familiar with the idea of leasing a new handset, so be sure to read the small print before signing up.
Apple iPhone 8

  • Leasing a mobile phone basically means you have to hand your phone back to the provider at the end of your term. Like renting a home, you have to keep it in spick and span condition, otherwise you face penalties.
  • You’ll likely be subject to fees up to $400 if you break your phone or crack its screen.
  • Fair wear and tear is allowed, but this is largely an ambiguous area.

So why on earth would anyone go with a leasing plan? Simply put, both Optus and Telstra offer some strong incentives to lease the new iPhone 8. Expect cheaper phone plans, extra data or extra perks. Optus calls them ‘Flex’ plans, while Telstra calls them ‘Mobile Lease’ plans.

  • When you lease the iPhone 8 or 8 Plus, you generally pay $10-odd less each month or get a few gigabytes extra data, but the catch is that you don’t get to keep the phone at the end of the contract.
  • With Optus & Telstra you have the ability to upgrade your phone a year into your contract for a $99 fee, and keep your current contract running.
  • This means you could upgrade your phone every year, such as when new iPhones are released.
  • Lease plans could work for those who want to upgrade smartphones every 12 or 24 months, but if not, it’s hard to see the benefit.

Considering a lot of people would upgrade their phone after a year or two anyway, this could be a convenient option and an easy way to get access to bonus data and other perks. However, the fact remains that you have to hand your phone back. You’ll also be subject to fees if you damage your phone, so investing in a case and screen protector may be wise. If you like the idea, here are some of the published available lease plan options from Optus and Telstra.

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

$59 Small

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS

min. cost $1416 over 24 month plan period

3GBMax Data**/billing period $59Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

$79 Medium

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS

min. cost $1896 over 24 month plan period

10GBMax Data**/billing period $79Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

$99 Large

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • 24 month Foxtel Now subscription to 1 Foxtel Now Starter Pack

min. cost $2376 over 24 month plan period

30GBMax Data**/billing period $79Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

$129 Extra Large

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • 24 month Foxtel Now subscription to 1 Foxtel Now Starter Pack

min. cost $3096 over 24 month plan period

60GBMax Data**/billing period $129Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
Telstra Logo

$199 Ultimate

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • *Unlimited data offered with ‘the best speeds available’
  • 24 month Foxtel Now subscription to 1 Foxtel Now Starter Pack

min. cost $4776 over 24 month plan period

Unlimited*Max Data**/billing period $199Advertised Data^^/billing period Go To Site
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

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

$85 My Plan Flex

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Stream Optus Sport & Nat Geo data free
  • Stream Music data free
  • Double Data

min. cost $2040 over 24 month plan period

25GBMax Data**/billing period $85Advertised Data^^/billing period
Optus Logo

$105 My Plan Flex

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Stream Optus Sport & Nat Geo data free
  • Stream Music data free
  • Double Data

min. cost $2520 over 24 month plan period

100GBMax Data**/billing period $105Advertised Data^^/billing period
Optus Logo

$125 My Plan Flex

  • Unlimited National Calls & SMS
  • Stream Optus Sport & Nat Geo data free
  • Stream Music data free

min. cost $3000 over 24 month plan period

200GBMax Data**/billing period $125Advertised Data^^/billing period
View all mobile plans listed on Canstar Blue

iPhone 8 Plans: The Final Word

Vodafone, Optus and Telstra give you plenty of exciting options to choose from:

  • Vodafone’s base plans pack in good amounts of data, while the telco also breaks from the norm to offer 36-month contract options.
  • Telstra and Optus are the big boys when it comes to entertainment features, with Telstra boasting Foxtel Now subscriptions across all plans, while Optus tries to entice you with data-free Netflix, Stan and Yes TV streaming.

Overall, there are two difference races going on – a race of cheaper prices and big data between Optus and Vodafone, while Telstra and Optus again do battle over big entertainment packages and extra perks.

There are lots of plans to pick from, but try not to rush in without giving it serious thought. Phone contracts are serious financial commitments and should not be taken lightly, no matter how exciting the prospect of getting your hands on the best new phones.

Compare Phones on a Plan

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