Vodafone launches unlimited data phone plan with no speed limits

Vodafone has launched a new, game-changing mobile plan that offers unlimited fast data, with no catches and zero speed caps.

Available from today, Vodafone’s Ultra+ SIM-only plan includes unlimited standard national talk and text, plus unlimited data use in Australia for $85 per month. And, unlike Vodafone’s existing Infinite data plans, there are no restrictions on the speed of your unlimited gigabytes — you’ll get the fastest data available at all times, including fast 5G speeds.

Vodafone Ultra+ plan: unlimited data with no speed caps

While Vodafone currently includes ‘unlimited’ speed-capped data on all of its Infinite Data postpaid mobile plans, the new Ultra+ plan is the first time the telco has offered truly unlimited gigabytes with no curbed speeds. At $85 per month, the plan sits at a seriously competitive price point, especially when compared to big-data options from Telstra and Optus.

For that $85, customers get unlimited maximum speed data on Vodafone’s 3G, 4G and 5G networks where available. The plan also includes unlimited calls and texts to standard Australian numbers, unlimited international calls to Zone 1 countries, 300 minutes of calls to Zone 2 destinations, and can be paired with your own device or with a new phone on a Vodafone handset plan.

“This is an all-you-can eat mobile data plan for just $85 per month, it’s that simple,” said Vodafone Chief Marketing Officer John Casey.

“Customers want to set and forget their telco plan, and this gives them unlimited mobile data at maximum available speeds, as well as unlimited standard national calls and texts. This means customers can stream, browse and connect on their mobile without giving data limits a second thought.”

Vodafone’s existing Infinite Data plans each include a high-speed data allowance, plus unlimited data capped at either 2Mbps or 10Mbps depending on your plan. The new Ultra+ option replaces Vodafone’s previous Ultra plan, which featured 150GB of fast data — plus unlimited data at speeds of 25Mbps — for $120 per month.

Currently, Vodafone is offering customers who sign up to any of its Infinite postpaid plans a bonus three-month Amazon Music Unlimited subscription. You can claim this offer by signing up before November 19, but be aware that after your free three-month period, you’ll be rolled onto the standard $11.99 per month subscription unless you cancel your Amazon Music plan.

The following table shows selected published Vodafone postpaid plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. If you’d like to compare more plans from different providers, use our mobile phone comparison tool. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

Can I use Vodafone’s unlimited data plan for home internet?

While many customers may be tempted to use Vodafone’s unlimited phone plan as a replacement for their existing NBN or broadband service, especially as the plan includes access to 5G, Vodafone is already cracking down on the potential for misuse.

In addition to unlimited data for your phone, the Ultra+ plan also features 30GB of mobile hotspot data to use each month. This is data reserved exclusively for tethering (i.e. sharing with other devices besides your smartphone), but Vodafone has stressed that its Ultra+ plan isn’t a substitute for unlimited home internet. Once your 30GB of hotspot data has been used, you can continue hotspotting at speeds of 2Mbps until your billing cycle resets.

Excessive tethering generally goes against a telco’s fair use policy, and in plans with unlimited data it’s easy to see how customers can take advantage. However, Vodafone’s 30GB of hotspot data does provide a good back-up for instances of slow home internet or drop-outs, and with no speed caps will be fast enough for streaming, gaming and downloading.

How does Vodafone’s unlimited data Ultra+ plan compare?

The new Ultra+ plan may be Vodafone’s first full-speed unlimited data option, but it isn’t the first unlimited fast data plan to be offered to Australian phone owners. Back in 2018, Telstra launched its premium $199 per month Ultimate plan, which included unlimited data with no speed caps.

This plan was eventually retired, and Telstra pivoted towards cutting excess data charges across all postpaid plans by offering unlimited data at 1.5Mbps speeds, in addition to a monthly full-speed data allowance. Optus also includes unlimited speed-capped data across its postpaid plans, again limited to speed of 1.5Mbps, and in addition to each plan’s full-speed data inclusions.

Price-wise, Vodafone’s Ultra+ plan delivers more data for your dollars when compared with the biggest plans from the major telcos. Telstra’s Extra Large Upfront plan offers 180GB of fast data for $115 each month (plus unlimited speed-capped data), while Optus’ Extra Large Choice Plus plan includes 240GB of full-speed data (and the same speed-capped unlimited data) for $85 per month.

The table below shows a selection of published Telstra and Optus postpaid plans from Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of advertised cost, lowest cost first, then by data allowance. Use our comparison tool to see a wider range of plans from other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

5G speeds fuel data demands

With excess data charges now essentially a thing of the past for the big three telcos (and for Vodafone’s SIM-only prepaid subsidiary, Felix Mobile), Vodafone’s move into offering unlimited full-speed gigabytes at such a comparatively low price ties in to the telco’s ongoing 5G network rollout.

“With millions of Australians at home in lockdown, there’s never been a more important time to create a great value worry-free experience, ” said Mr Casey.

“Our 5G network is continuing to roll out in selected areas of major Australian cities and centres, and this new plan will allow customers with a 5G device in those areas to make the most of it.”

Although Vodafone’s 5G coverage is still limited, the boom in 5G smartphones means the demand for fast mobile data is likely to increase as the network expands. Vodafone has confirmed to Canstar Blue that its 5G network is on track to cover 85% of residents in Australia’s ten largest cities by the end of 2021, with coverage currently available in over 700 suburbs.

Offering unlimited data at a price that essentially undercuts its biggest competitors is a bold move from Vodafone, but one that may pay off for customers who want to take advantage of 5G coverage and speeds where available.

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