Unlimited Phone Plans Compared

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As anybody with a smartphone knows, mobile data is hugely important – for many it’s the key feature of their phone plan. With our increased demand for data has emerged a reduced reliance on simple text messages and good old phone calls – both of which are cheaper services for the telcos to provide. As a result, more Aussie carriers are offering something that would have been but a pipe dream a few years ago – unlimited phone plans. Read on for our review of unlimited phone plans, or jump straight into our phone plan comparison tool to find a great unlimited deal.

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What is an unlimited phone plan?

An unlimited phone plan includes infinite standard call time and text messages within the country the plan is paid for. This means plans are differentiated by what really matters to most consumers these days – data, media streaming and other bonus inclusions. While some expensive plans include unlimited international talk and text, the majority keep this limited to a national service.

  • Unlimited phone plans are available in both prepaid and postpaid form as SIM only The majority of new handset phone plans also bring unlimited calls and messages as standard.
  • A number of telcos now also provide unlimited data to use, which is simply astounding, but there are a few catches.

So where can you find the best value plan? We’ve checked out the cheapest unlimited plans on the market to satisfy all of your usage needs. Remember that no service provider yet offers unlimited mobile data, so look at the amount on offer as the main point of difference when you compare plans.

Unlimited Data Phone Plans

There are three providers that currently offer unlimited data on some phone plans, and there’s probably no guessing as to what providers they are – Optus, Telstra and Vodafone.

  • Optus’ current deal is an invitation-only offer for selected Optus customers. You’ll pay $60 a month for ‘unlimited’ data that is speed rated to 1.5Mbps all the way through.
  • Vodafone’s offer is for everyone and starting at $60 a month you get 30GB of ‘full speed’ 4G data, and the rest is speed rated to 1.5Mbps.
  • Telstra offers a similar deal, where for $69 you get 40GB ‘full speed’ data, which slows to 1.5Mbps after.

All are on a 12-month, SIM only plan, though with Vodafone you can add a handset repayment over 12, 24 or 36 months if you wish. Optus and Telstra offer all the good extra stuff you’d come to expect – data-free music and streaming to name a couple. There are three Vodafone deals, and it all depends on how much ‘full speed’ data you want, as you can see below.

Cheap Unlimited Phone Deals

From time to time, certain providers stand out more than most for providing the hottest deals that boost value. The trade-off is that these deals usually only last for a few months, or even just one month. You also have to watch out for short-term phone plans of 7 or 10 days. At the time of writing the hottest unlimited deals with at least a 28 day expiry are:

These four are some of the cheapest full-term plans with unlimited calls and texts, though unlimited deals under $15 aren’t hard to come by these days. It’s also handy you’ll get 1GB the majority of the time as well. You will have to watch out for 12 month contracts though; they can be tempting, but you have to ask yourself how the mobile world will look in a year’s time.

Cheapest Unlimited iPhone 8 Plans

To bundle in an iPhone 8 you can expect to pay over $70 a month for the most part, and you usually only receive 1-2GB data in the process. The base iPhone 8 comes with 64GB storage space, and hence usually comes with a cheaper price tag. Luckily most plans come with unlimited calls & texts, and the cheapest providers in this space are:

  • Virgin: Offers one of the cheapest at just under $70 a month with 2GB on board. Boasts extras like data-free music streaming.
  • Vodafone: Has separated the plan cost from the phone repayment – the cheapest configuration is the $40 Red plan combined with a 36 month phone repayment. Boasts a class-leading 6GB data.
  • Optus: Its cheapest plan is a ‘Flex’ plan where you have to return the phone at the end of your term, or upgrade after a year for a nominal fee.
  • Telstra: Also offers a competitive ‘lease’ plan, with 2GB data on board. Often includes bonuses like Foxtel packages, Telstra Air data, Apple Music and more.

Click on the links below to compare further.

Cheapest Unlimited iPhone X Plans

The even more hotly-anticipated iPhone is the iPhone X series – pronounced ‘ten’. This one was released to celebrate 10 years of the iPhone, and base storage is again 64GB. This phone starts at about $1,500 outright, but consider if you can find a better deal with these plans below:

  • Vodafone: Has the cheapest iPhone X plan, but the phone repayment is over 36 months. Prices start at about $80-odd but notably come with 6GB data.
  • Optus: Its cheapest plan is again a ‘Flex’ plan, which offers flexibility to upgrade easily but isn’t so good for people who want to hold onto their cherished possession.
  • Virgin: Surprisingly does not offer the cheapest plan, at close to $90. Notably comes with extras like data gifts to sweeten the deal, though.
  • Telstra: Prices start at $102 a month for a leasing option. This plan comes with 2GB data, but you are rewarded for hopping into a more expensive plan with massive data bonuses on offer, as well as included Foxtel packs and the like.

Follow the links below to see further details.

Unlimited Phone Plans with 100GB Data

This is where the big boys shine once again – Telstra, and Optus. Both offer some form of phone plan with 100GB+ full-speed data included, either as a bonus or standard feature. Keep in mind you will likely pay $100+ a month for these plans, though at this price a handset is included often at no extra charge.

  • Telstra offers Foxtel Now packages from time to time, as well as data-free music streaming, Apple Music memberships, data-free NRL & AFL and more.
  • Optus offers Optus Sport on many plans, plus data-free Netflix, music and more.

Overall, a phone plan is more than just a phone plan these days. If you go with one of the big providers, it also pays to look at the bonuses on offer.

Want Big Data for Low Prices?

If you want even more data, but don’t really want to pay an arm and a leg, you’ll probably have to opt for 3G only mobile phone plans. Yes, that’s right – some providers offer lots of data with the catch that you only get 3G speeds. While this is much slower in metro areas, if you’re living even semi-rurally you may not get 4G anyway, so 3G may be the way to go.

  • Such providers to offer big data for low prices are Moose Mobile, Jeenee Mobile, Exetel, and Yomojo.

Could this be enough to replace your home internet, even? While it’s a lot of data for a relatively small price, you will have to consider the implications of only having 3G data on-tap. Those cat videos may load slower, that Snapchat might not send as quickly and loading Facebook could be a more frustrating time, especially with lots of pictures and videos in your newsfeed.

Add to the fact with the rise of cheap, unlimited data phone plans as seen above, you’ll have to weigh up whether you want 3G speeds all the way through, or some full-speed data that’s throttled to 1.5Mbps after a certain amount.

What ‘unlimited’ phone plan should I go with?

While some low-cost prepaid and postpaid plans are still available with set amounts of included call and text value, it seems that the future is very much unlimited. With the big three telcos offering some form of ‘unlimited’ data, it looks like the new battleground will be in this space, and this may make it hard for the smaller guys to keep up.

  • Providers in other countries – such as the US and UK – offer unlimited data phone plans and have done for a few years now.
  • The new battleground could be how much ‘full speed’ data each provider can offer, with ‘unlimited’ speed-rated data a foregone conclusion.

But back to the cheap plans and there are a handful of providers that all seem to pop up when you mention ‘cheapest’, and competition is certainly heating up. This has created somewhat of a tit-for-tat ‘price war’ and while providers are slashing prices and ramping up value, the customers caught in the middle may actually benefit most.

  • You don’t have to spend a lot to get an unlimited phone plan – as little as $10 a month.

It all just comes down to how much data you want, which will dictate how much you pay. Keep your eyes peeled for the next best deal.

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