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  • News, Telecommunications - Written by on Tuesday, September 18, 2012 9:50 - 77 Comments

    TPG reveals $69.99 unlimited NBN plan

    news National provider broadband provider TPG has revealed it is planning to offer at least one plan on the National Broadband Network’s fibre infrastructure featuring the same unlimited downloads it offers on ADSL networks, with speeds of 12Mbps and a monthly charge of $69.99 including a home telephone line.

    The company is well-known for its unlimited broadband packages on its ADSL network, which typically cost around the $60 mark and feature unlimited monthly data quota and a bundled telephone line, but until now TPG has remained aloof from the race to sign up customers in the NBN’s early rollout zones.

    However, in its annual financial results presentation pack this morning, TPG included a slide that featured a 12 month NBN plan at the entry-level 12Mbps speed with “unlimited data usage” for $69.99 per month, plus unlimited local and “standard national calls” to landlines and unlimited international calls to a number of countries globally. The company did not reveal whether it was planning to offer unlimited quota on higher-speed plans — such as 25Mbps, 50Mbps or 100Mbps — which would allow customers to download much higher levels of quota per month.

    The news comes several months after TPG told iTNews in March that it was considering an unlimited quota plan. At the time, the publication reported: “TPG general manager of marketing and sales Craig Levy … said the company was “looking at all our options” for NBN pricing, including an unlimited quota plan, and was planning to compete heavily on the network.”

    Along with Dodo and Vodafone, TPG is one of the few major Australian broadband providers not to have released any pricing details yet for National Broadband Network plans. In fact, it is unclear to what extent the company has actually engaged with NBN Co’s ‘on-boarding’ process, whereby ISPs work out how their systems will interconnect with the National Broadband Network.

    It has been unclear whether TPG could maintain similar pricing levels on an NBN unlimited plan to its existing ADSL2+ unlimited plans. The maximum a user could theoretically download over a month through an unlimited ADSL2+ plan is around 6.3TB. However, with the dramatically faster speeds available under the NBN — up to 100Mbps, as opposed to up to 24Mbps under ADSL2+, that total monthly download limit could be quadrupled. That extra quota cost could potentially drive up monthly plan costs on unlimited plans. The maximum quota other ISPs are currently offering on their NBN plans is between one terabyte and two terabytes.

    On a 12Mbps NBN plan, the maximum quota a user could download per month would be close to 3.1 Terabytes. TPG has described the unlimited quota plan as a “standard” plan.

    If TPG does proceed with its unlimited pricing package, the company’s offering will be radically different from those NBN fibre pricing plans already in the market, with most other providers focusing on higher speed plans with a moderate amount of data quota. For $70 a month, for example, second-tier ISP Exetel offers a 300GB plan at 100Mbps speeds. This plan undercuts popular rivals such as iiNet and Internode.

    opinion/analysis
    It looks like TPG is finally convinced that the NBN is getting some scale and has started to show its hand on its NBN pricing. I guess we can’t be surprised that the company has tried its hardest to squeeze its extremely popular “unlimited” model into a fibre framework, but will the plans be popular? And are they actually good?

    In a word, no.

    Frankly, if you’re going to sign up to the NBN, as virtually every Australian will, and you’re the sort of person who downloads a lot of stuff from the Internet (hence, being interested in an unlimited quota plan), you are going to want to take advantage of the NBN’s faster speeds. To go from ADSL2+, which only offers speeds up to 24Mbps, and most people get far less, to fibre at 12Mbps is a bit of a joke. 12Mbps is not the NBN tier which most Australians are going to sign up for, and in fact NBN Co already has significant uptake figures showing that a higher than expected proportion of NBN customers sign up for the higher value plans — 50Mbps and 100Mbps.

    But if TPG does offer unlimited quota value at these higher speed plans, it is going to have to push its charges much higher as well, just to keep up with customers’ downloads. At 25Mbps, for example, you can theoretically download about 6.7 terabytes of data per month, so it’s not unreasonable to expect that TPG might charge something similar to its current unlimited plans for such a service — perhaps $80 a month?

    But as you get higher speeds, the amount of data you can such down a month increased rapidly. At 50Mbps, you could download a staggering 13.3 terabytes a month, and double that at 100Mbps. Consequently, TPG will not, in my estimation, be able to offer these plans at anywhere south of $100 — and the expensive, post-$100 customer has never been where TPG has aimed at.

    I expect that TPG’s most popular NBN plan, if it chooses to offer one, will be a ~ $80 unlimited plan with 25Mbps speeds. That’s where I would say most TPG-type customers would be OK signing up for. Hell, maybe TPG can do some fiddling with its telephone costs and cut that down a bit to $70. Then it surely would have a winner on its hands. But I’m not sure how financially possible that is.

    Image credit: TPG

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    1. Simon
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:04 am | Permalink |

      And the competition grows even more :)

      Bring on the NBN.

    2. Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:05 am | Permalink |

      I’d consider using this as a second ISP link (the NBN NTU supports up to 4) primarily for my bulk transfer requirements. Server backups etc.

      • Simon
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:09 am | Permalink |

        Yeah I’m quite excited about the possilibities of things like that.

        I’d consider having a low quota, 100mb plan as my main link, and then having a plan such as this for bulk things where speed isn’t as much of an issue..

        • Bj
          Posted 19/09/2012 at 5:33 am | Permalink |

          How does that blow TPG out of the water?

          The iinet plan is data only, if you want a fixed land line it is an additional 9.95 per month.
          TPG 12/1 unlimited with land line is 69.99
          iinet 12/1 100G/100G with land line is 69.90

          I know I would prefer to spend the extra 5c per month and never have to worry about peak/offpeak usage.

          • Bj
            Posted 19/09/2012 at 5:37 am | Permalink |

            Correction for the above. The iinet plan is VoIP and requires a VoIP modem it does not use the ONT to deliver the voice as the TPG plan seems to.

          • NBNAccuracy
            Posted 19/09/2012 at 9:17 am | Permalink |

            Huh? Who said anything about blowing out of the water?

            He said he would like to have two accounts at once.
            1. TPG 12Mb unlimited for bulk data transfer that isn’t speed critical.
            2. A 100Mb plan for when he needs things fast.

    3. Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:22 am | Permalink |

      Such, should be suck perhaps Renai?

      Good analysis. Exactly my thoughts- CVC pricing makes higher speed unlimited downloads unlikely. I’ve never believed we’re going to see real ‘unlimited’ plans like those they used to have in the US. Far too expensive in Australia.

      But this will appeal to the low end of the younger market. And It’s good to see, unlike the critics believe, there is and will be competition in an NBN world.

    4. mega
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:23 am | Permalink |

      While I’m glad that they managed to squeeze an unlimited plan into the NBN I’m very worried at the price. I pay $60 for an unlimited ADSL2+ plan (including line rental) which gets me ~20Mbps. $70 for a slower NBN plan doesn’t seem like a step forward at all.

      But I’m sure the situation will evolve as more providers get on board and prices come down.

      • Ferretzor
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:38 am | Permalink |

        You are fortunate to get the 20Mbps though, lucked out there. My ~7Mbps says this is still a reasonable plan ;)

        • Posted 18/09/2012 at 5:50 pm | Permalink |

          Seven? Luxury.

          3.5 for me…

          • RoninX3ph
            Posted 19/09/2012 at 4:07 pm | Permalink |

            Is it wrong that the first thing I thought when I saw this was Monty Pythons 4 Yorkshiremen sketch?

            “3.5 Mbit? HAH That’s blazing compared to what we have! My Da’ had to go out with two cans and a piece of string and scream binary to the bloke down the road to use his internet!”

      • Richard Ure
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 11:13 am | Permalink |

        You might find tpg’s limited, faster plans still give you as much as you actually use.

      • Murdoch
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 11:15 am | Permalink |

        Are you actually downloading over 3 TB per month over that ADSL connection? I would think not. In which case, I’d suggest shopping around because unlimited only means more than you use.

        For instance … if you use less than 200 GB per month, this plan blows your current one out of the water for speed (remembering that you don’t get consistent speeds with ADSL2+) …

        http://www.iinet.net.au/nbn/nbn-plan-residential.html

        • mega
          Posted 19/09/2012 at 11:51 am | Permalink |

          I most certainly have shopped around and I’m very happy where we ended up.

          Indeed we don’t use 3TB/month – I never said we did. More like ~200-400gb during peak periods (but that can blow out at times). Unfortunately iinet provides a pretty pathetic off-peak window (2am-8am) so this household would end up coughing up $85/month for their 500gb plan (25/5mbit). On the other hand, TPG gives me as much data as I want, whenever I want for $60/month with roughly the same speed.

          Consistency of speeds? I’ve never noticed a problem. Budget ISP’s have contention issues, regardless of whether you’re connected with Fibre or ADSL. My connection has been great!

    5. NBNAccuracy
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:27 am | Permalink |

      Easy, just offer the higher speeds. Then, like with there ADSL plans, school the reps in a whole pile of excuses why the user never achieves these speeds. Reasons why their connection slows to a crawl is in fact either their own fault or NBN congestion. Just take their currect script and replace Telstra with NBNCo

      • PeterA
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 12:42 pm | Permalink |

        I regularly hit 2 megabytes per second on my TPG link. (and 90kb/second upload)

        But then again, it isn’t a resold telstra line.

        • NBNAccuracy
          Posted 18/09/2012 at 1:32 pm | Permalink |

          Good for you. Now post that into the threads of all those who are complaining about bad speeds. Or are you one of those who do already?

        • Posted 18/09/2012 at 5:52 pm | Permalink |

          I’m sure you only get 2 megabits per second… :o)

          • Michael
            Posted 18/09/2012 at 8:08 pm | Permalink |

            No 2 megabytes is perfectly possible on adsl2+ (20mbit ~ 2mbyte). Divided by 10 to account for overhead.

            • NBNAccuracy
              Posted 18/09/2012 at 8:35 pm | Permalink |

              I assume he means 90KB upload and not 90kb as he wrote.

              • PeterA
                Posted 19/09/2012 at 3:02 pm | Permalink |

                yep, 2 megabytes and 90kilobytes.

                I work in IT, and regularly frown when I see laymen getting it wrong.

                Fair to say I am frowning at myself right now.

    6. Francis Young
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:35 am | Permalink |

      Renai, this seems a logical plan for some small business offices with cloud based data entry systems, or for a household where certainty of monthly cost is critical, while avoiding end-of-month throttling for exceeding data allowance.

      By now, TPG knows exactly how much data will be consumed on average by an unlimited user. They would lose a little on a few FANs which pushed up their NBN headroom requirements, but many unlimited usres come in well under a terabyte most months.

      You are correct that (unlike the lucky mega who gets 20 Mbps) 15/16ths of the area reachable by an ADSL2+ DSLAM gets speeds of 12 Mbps or less due to the copper run exceeding the radius of 1 km. Consequently, the majority of ADSL users who move to a 12/1 NBN plan on fibre or wireless will see a speed increase, not a decrease.

      • Ben Zemm
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 5:00 pm | Permalink |

        Indeed. I’m on TPG ADSL2+ at home and 12/1 would be (approx) twice as fast for me, for essentially the same monthly spend. I currently sync at around 6.2/0.5. Of course I’d like faster but if this is an entry level plan then I’m excited for future plans. Being on NBN would then be trivial to change plans.

        Oh at work our ADSL syncs at full ADSL1 speeds, but until recently we never got it during the day (once I ssh’d in during the wee hours and got full speed, but hours later even Google would sometimes time out) due to Telstra congestion. No top hats but they seem to have relieved congestion for the most part.

      • Richard Ure
        Posted 19/09/2012 at 9:40 am | Permalink |

        “You are correct that (unlike the lucky mega who gets 20 Mbps) 15/16ths of the area reachable by an ADSL2+ DSLAM gets speeds of 12 Mbps or less due to the copper run exceeding the radius of 1 km.”

        And MT keeps promising 50 to 80 meg over copper on his FTTN proposal. How does he have the hide to keep saying this?

    7. Ferretzor
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:36 am | Permalink |

      At the very least this should bring to an end the “zomg NBN costs the earth” type spoutings. 70 bucks for phone and guaranteed 12Mb down is a fairly good straight swapover point for most people I would think – fairly equivalent to what a lot of people have now (actually better than I get booohooooo).

      No cap so no need to worry about a quota or shaping, relatively cheapish price, ass end speed tier, free phone (more or less). If this were available to me right now I would probably sign up, but as Renai says the higher speed versions would be far more attractive.

      • GongGav
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 11:36 am | Permalink |

        +1

        For comparable services, this plan by TPG is pretty much spot on with what they already offer. 12 Mps vs ~24 Mps sounds like a difference, but the reality of the ~24 Mps connection is more like 6-7 Mps, which 12 Mps covers.

        Before doomsayers attack that number comparison, fibre doesnt have the distance issue copper lines do, so the 12 Mps speed holds true the whole way.

        The net effect is that the 12 Mps connection will be faster for the vast majority of those (like me) currently connected to a 24 Mps connection.

        Which both cost $50, plus an extra $20 for a phone line. As comparable as your going to see and a very basic crossover point for plenty of people.

        Not me, like others I want a BETTER service than I currently have, so will be eyeballing 100 Mps speeds if I can. I have 500 gig a month now though, and go nowhere near using it. If there is a 100/40 plan offering 300 gig then thats more than enough. Hopefully for around the same price.

    8. Murdoch
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:39 am | Permalink |

      Although I have absolutely no market data to prove this …. I think this is a great idea for those lower end users currently paying for a bundled plan from a premium provider. They have the peace of mind of never having to worry about their quota, they have something comparable to a lower end ADSL connection (and that’s only if you ignore fibre’s greater reach than copper’s, and improved reliability), and they have a phone as well.

      This sort of set up at that price would make by Dad’s day. I need a little more grunt though ;-)

    9. NBNchoice
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:42 am | Permalink |

      There is a market for >$100pm plans – and thinking back on customer signups for the last 10 years on the ADSL network(across 150k of orders and 3 ISPs), it does exist. But it is small. Perhaps 3-5%.

      In fact, I can tell you that it is pretty damn hard to get many consumers to part with this much cash – even enthusists have a limit. People spending >$100 are expecting the ‘value bag with all inclusions’ or are technical people who have a specific need for such a standalone service. 12M Unlimited isnt special.

      Unlimited on the NBN is going to be slow going (price wise) because the network is so small, the scale means the risks are much greater for suppliers. Once a provider has >2000 users per POI on a pretty similar ARPU & inclusion spread it becomes a lot easier. 5000 users to be cost compeditive.

      However, I claim there is still no innovation in any of the current plan offerings from an provider. Its all the same as the DSL plan design. No one is offering a pre-paid service, for example? No company has developed a new charging model, or more effective way of offering usage.

      Strange as it may seem, I think the current ADSL ISPs are turning into the Dialup ISPs of late, and will be too slow to adapt. All it is going to take is some money, understanding of what it is that people are using their service for – to create an innovatave product set, and an effective means to communicate with people, and we have a new player in the market.

      By the way, anyone want to have a look back to see how much TPG charged for their unlimited 256k service back when it first launched? :)

      • NBNchoice
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:49 am | Permalink |

        ..then again, I also realise that many analysts have hit out at TPG over the years, claiming they lowered their prices, and therefore margins too much, and too quickly – as it simply devalued the price of internet in the marketplace for everyone and therefore TPG didn’t see the applicable rise in customer growth.

        This’ll just be a headliner because no one else has released Unlimited NBN plans. I’d expect your usual $30 or perhaps even $20 base level offering from TPG as well…

      • skywake
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 12:39 pm | Permalink |

        Looking at the wayback machine I can see a $40/mo at 256k in Dec 2008…… but I remember having “unlimited” 256k with a different ISP way back in 2005 for, from memory, about $50/mo. I’m not sure what that says but there you go.

        Interestingly I don’t think I ever went much over 25GB and probably averaged something closer to 7GB/mo despite hammering my connection at times with a theoretical max of ~80GB/mo. If you average out unlimited users on ADSL2+ I’d be surprised if you’d get a number much higher than ~100GB.

        • NBNchoice
          Posted 18/09/2012 at 2:50 pm | Permalink |

          http://web.archive.org/web/20030207121209/http://www.tpg.com.au/products_services/adsl.html

          2003 and TPG release 256k (Telstra-based) Home DSL for $69.95 per month – with Unlimited downloads.

          It stayed at that price until at least 2004 – when they trialed some $49.95 256k plans also with Unlimited downloads, but with a dynamic IP, and only 1 email account. Plus you were only allowed one user.Point was to keep most sales at $69.95 but accelerate growth at the lower price.

          This is what allowed TPG to get to 50,000 DSL customers in the same amount of time it took iiNet, although TPG did not purchase its customer base, it was all organic sales. iiNet purchased a bunch of ISPs and grew/converted the dial base to DSL.

          TPG and iiNet then were both offered highly volume discounted 1500k DSL ports from Telstra wholesale, at a time when everyone was paying around $65ex – they were paying around the same as a 256k-512k port. Simon Hacket whinged for months that TPG was selling below cost, and other ISPs that were following them were simply loosing money. Point was that any ISP that made it to 50,000 services would likely recieved that rate, but the ones who had got close ran out of steam (20-35k was all most of the others reached before being bought out, at that time).

          The discounted 1500k ports is what allowed TPG to sell their famous 1500k/20G plan for $50 per month – and make a profit. It is also what allowed them, 12 months later, to the day, to announce they had scale for a DSLAM rollout, which allowed them to rapidly maintain their growth in the market.

          They clearly take a very long term view on things.

          Anyone who has read the ACCC view on the network build for the NBN, what their concerns are in respect to future unbundling of the fibre, and the network design for the NBN, may see a future with Telstra, Optus and TPG supplying direct Layer 1 fibre services to the vast majority of FAN sites.

          With the fibre in the ground, the large consumer base and other strategic assets, I wonder if anyone from TPG has considered this future…..as it is a very TPG thing to do.

      • Nich
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 3:27 pm | Permalink |

        Pretty sure I remember paying TPG $150/month for an ‘unlimited’ 1.5Mbps connection back in the day.

    10. Dy4me
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:50 am | Permalink |

      Everyday I realise how much Malcolm Turnbull and the Libs will piss off the telcos and consumers if they decide to go with FttN network that can only offer a max of 80mbps if the nodes are no more than the max of 500 meters apart. This is when more people want the higher NBN plans 100/40 and 50/20mbps.

      Then to tell the telcos…sorry with the new infrastructure you cant have those plans any more.
      Telcos tell the consumers sorry, no 100/40mbps plans any more and the rest will depend on how far your from the node and condition of your copper wire…
      Then all the calls consumers will make to the telco. Im paying for 80mbps but im getting 20mbps.
      Telco… sorry sir its your copper wire. its bad.

    11. Vitman
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 11:35 am | Permalink |

      Nice then til it starts to slow down….

      • Posted 18/09/2012 at 1:22 pm | Permalink |

        Interesting comment. Do you have proof that it will slow down ?

        • Sathias
          Posted 18/09/2012 at 2:03 pm | Permalink |

          Even if customers aren’t paying by the Gb, TPG have to via CVC charges at each POI. So they either have to limit the number of customers that can sign up for such a service, or there will be a tipping point where the service becomes oversubscribed. In theory anyway.

    12. RoninX3ph
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 11:57 am | Permalink |

      Currently living in Japan I don’t suffer from this, but when back home in Adelaide, stuck with a 4-5mbit ADSL2+ connection, I would very happily go from that to an unlimited 12mbit Fibre service. Sure, it isn’t the fastest, but is more than double the speed I get on my DSL for less per month than my current plan. Can’t say I would be complaining about that!

    13. NPSF3000
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 12:10 pm | Permalink |

      “That extra quota cost could potentially drive up monthly plan costs on unlimited plans. ”

      Since we are talking about theoretical consumption… the more data TPG’s customers use, the cheaper CVC becomes.

      Large data usage isn’t the problem – the problem is being above the ‘average’ that NBNco base thier pricing on.

      • Thrawn
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 3:04 pm | Permalink |

        CVC charges go down on a per bandwidth basis, but goes up on a per user basis. So as average use of a plan goes up (even if its consistently in line with the industry as a whole), then the average cost of the plan goes up as well.

        If the average cost goes up, it stands to reason the selling price would go up also…

        • NPSF3000
          Posted 18/09/2012 at 6:27 pm | Permalink |

          ” then the average cost of the plan goes up as well.”

          Yes, but at a much reduced rate.

          Remember, NBNco work on the basis of ARPU [or more accurately, 7% ROI] – if the average is 1GB or 1TB it doesn’t affect the bulk of the costs. Furthermore when looking at current predictions remember that they may be working on certain time-frames which also require certain ARPU increases – if demand is ahead of expectations those increases may not apply.

    14. Craig
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 12:10 pm | Permalink |

      How long until the ACCC takes TPG to court over this false and misleading advertising?
      The plan is not unlimited, the maximum that could be obtained is less than 4TB. This clearly is not “unlimited”.

      Then there is going to be additional problem they have to justify when the network doesn’t perform. The ACCC has made it clear, ISP will need to deliver the speeds they quote, no matter what their terms and conditions might say. Thus TPG won’t be able to blame NBN Co, because they have capacity, it will be the ISP that hasn’t bought enough to meet the demand.

      • Kermit
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 12:19 pm | Permalink |

        What’s wrong with you man?! It’s not yet being offered, it’s just a draft. It’ll take a few more months, even years before it rolls out. If you don’t want cheap Internet, you can always go to more expensive premium providers.

      • Francis Young
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 12:29 pm | Permalink |

        Craig, of course this is unlimited.

        When you hire a car with unlimited mileage included, you cannot drive at more than the legal speed limit to squeeze more kms into each day. But you are not required to pay the hire company any more to travel further than you could on a limited km hire.

        When you go to an all-you-can-eat buffet, you are (hopefully) constrained by your own commonsense in choosing what to pile on your plate.

        And if you buy TPG’s 12 Mbps NBN service and use it at full capacity 24×7 with no throttling or excess data charges, then you have by definition an unlimited 12 Mbps service, including the listed telephone calls.

      • Dy4me
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 12:48 pm | Permalink |

        Every lets release an unlimited speed plan for Craig(unlimited mbps/s). only then can he have true unlimited. Seriously Craig. You comments make no sense!

      • GongGav
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 1:18 pm | Permalink |

        I normally dont feed the trolls when they are so obvious, but this time I figured I would, just to knock the stupidity out once and for all.

        This has already been through the courts. TPG were taken to court for misleading advertising back in 2010 (or was it 2011…?), where they were guilty. Not of the unlimited side of the deal, but the ‘hidden’ costs of needing to have a phone line, plus a one off installation cost.

        The unlimited access was perfectly fine according to the ACCC.

        Dont feed the troll, there is no issue.

    15. damien
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 1:41 pm | Permalink |

      Quote from article: “To go from ADSL2+, which only offers speeds up to 24Mbps, and most people get far less, to fibre at 12Mbps is a bit of a joke”.

      No it’s not. For me, this would be a huge upgrade. Not only would it double my current real world ADSL2+ speed, but more importantly, I wouldn’t be (effectively) restricted on download quota, as I am now (300GB p/m, which I easily reach).

      And better still, the TPG plan would be some $20 p/m cheaper. I’d hardly call that a joke!

      • GongGav
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 2:09 pm | Permalink |

        I think Renai’s point is (and correct me if I’m wrong here Renai) is that a leap from the realistic 6 Mps peopel get from ADSL2 now, to 12 Mps isnt a big one, and not what most people will be wanting from the NBN. For those fortunate enough to already get 20 Mps from their ADSL2, the situation is only worse – it IS a step backwards.

        I for one am expecting an order of magnitude faster than what I get now (ie 10x not 2x) from the network, and fully expect to get it.

        Most people seem to be wanting similar.

        If you personally are satisfied with twice the speed for the same cost, you’ll be missing out on what the NBN intends to deliver. Yes, you’ll be (considerably) better off than now, but you’ll be behind everyone else, and services will pass you by.

        • Posted 18/09/2012 at 3:07 pm | Permalink |

          “I think Renai’s point is (and correct me if I’m wrong here Renai) is that a leap from the realistic 6 Mps peopel get from ADSL2 now, to 12 Mps isnt a big one, and not what most people will be wanting from the NBN. For those fortunate enough to already get 20 Mps from their ADSL2, the situation is only worse – it IS a step backwards.”

          Precisely.

        • WhatsNew
          Posted 18/09/2012 at 6:58 pm | Permalink |

          “I think Renai’s point is (and correct me if I’m wrong here Renai) is that a leap from the realistic 6 Mps peopel get from ADSL2 now, to 12 Mps isnt a big one, and not what most people will be wanting from the NBN. For those fortunate enough to already get 20 Mps from their ADSL2, the situation is only worse – it IS a step backwards.”

          You can’t really judge this plan as though it will be the only one that they will offer on the NBN. I can understand that it may be the only one to offer unlimited downloads, at least at the beginning.

          Comparisons with their existing ADSL2+ plans aren’t really valid since everyone pays the same on TPG’s own ADSL2+ (where available) regardless of the speeds each user gets, so in effect slower users help to subsidise faster users on the same plan, whereas on NBN this “technologically imposed subsidy” won’t exist. Additionally, these unlimited plans will surely be available to far more users on the NBN than is currently the case with those connected to selected telephone exchanges.

          Users who need/demand the higher speeds will still be able to get them, and most likely for the same price they pay now, they just won’t be able to get them without some sort of (probably very large) quota.

    16. Wenbin
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 2:37 pm | Permalink |

      I think some people failed to mention that the $69.99 plan includes unlimited local and national calls to landlines, also to a few international destinations. How many websites can give you the speed of 12Mbps downloading speed? I don’t think there are a lot.

      • Ben Zemm
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 5:07 pm | Permalink |

        For some people just the unlimited calls at $70/month would be worth it. Compare with Telstra Homeline Ultimate, which is $90 per month just for the phone line (!!!) to get unlimited calls, and not even any international free calls.

        I guess some “unlimited” mobile plans would be cheaper, but they still don’t include the international calls.

        Unlimited 12Mbps would then be gravy.

      • NPSF3000
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 6:33 pm | Permalink |

        “How many websites can give you the speed of 12Mbps downloading speed?”

        Sorry, really hate this argument.

        1) NBN > Internet > Websites.

        2) It’s fairly trivial for a website to deliver content at 12, 100 or if the demand was there even 1000Mbps speeds! All you need is some static content [images, css/html/js, video etc] and a CDN [say 20c/GB PAYG start].

    17. damien
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 2:57 pm | Permalink |

      “If you personally are satisfied with twice the speed for the same cost, you’ll be missing out on what the NBN intends to deliver. Yes, you’ll be (considerably) better off than now, but you’ll be behind everyone else, and services will pass you by”.

      I’ll never be “missing out on what the NBN intends to deliver” because if it’s something that’s important to me, I will simply change my plan.

      My point was based on my current experience, which would not be at all unusual to a great chunk of the population at large. Few people would be lucky enough to get 20Mbps ADSL2+ at the moment. This minority may well not find these 12Mbps plans attractive, though they may if they’re stuck with small quotas.

      Therefore as a transitional step, this plan would be attractive to me. But the NBN is still years away for most and when it finally gets built (if the Libs don’t put a wrecking ball through it), the picture WRT to plans will likely be very different (better).

      But for now, this plan sounds pretty good to me. Even with my measly 6Mb connection, I don’t feel I’m missing out on anything. I can stream stuff without problems, downloads are fast enough (even if some take 2 or 3 hrs). Of course uploads suck. My biggest issue is quota limits.

      When my usage patterns change, data content transferred increases, I will simply move to a more suitable plan, as I have done many times in the past – simple.

      • GongGav
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 3:16 pm | Permalink |

        Yeah, I was agreeing with you, just worded parts poorly. I’m like you – I have as good an ADSL2 connection as I’m going to get (~800m, within line of site of the exchange), but for various reasons (in short, poor copper shunting the connection the long way around) I get 6 Mps on a good day.

        Share that with just 1 person, the connection suffers. A 6Mps connection, bumping to a 12 mps connection would solve that problem, and like you say, for plenty that will be good enough, at least when they look at it today. I get it, and you’re spot on.

        I was just trying to point out that society wont stand still around those people. We will have a net connection as good as anything else in the world, with HD TV’s in every lounge. Those TV’s will deliver online provided content, which is going to require the sort of speed we will come to expect.

        You’re already seeing it with iView right now. They are running Doctor Who a week early online, and by all accounts are seeing massive numbers. Its proof (in part at least) that online providers will be a part of our world, and soon. A 12 Mps connection wont be able to deliver on that AND provide a good connection for all your other needs.

        Whats it going to be like when Hulu or similar are a standard feature?

        For those (not necessarily you) that are content to stick with the basement plans, those sorts of features wont be easily available as time goes on – their connection may not be good enough.

    18. Gordon Drennan
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 3:22 pm | Permalink |

      It is the likes of TPG who might just save the NBN from the “everyone wants more speed” looneys who would turn it into a white elephant. It has to not just pass every home, but be able to offer enough genuinely different plans that there is something for everyone, even the people YOU think are stupid for wanting what they want. It has to offer the range of choices that results in everyone getting what they want and so wanting to sign up, not have to be forced to. TPG’s idea of offering pretty much exactly what people would get from ADSL, only a little better, should be extended even further to offering alternatives to wireless broadband plans – even lower speed than 12 Mb/s and accordingly even cheaper for the elderly and the sick and the poor – so that scarce wireless bandwidth is not wasted on people who don’t actually need a mobile connection, and so it is a genuinely “national” network that connects the people who really need to be connected, not just those who want to watch 4K movies and play games. It is the poor who actually need unlimited plans, even if that requires the speed to be low, because they can’t afford huge unexpected bills for going over their quota.

      • Alex
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 4:01 pm | Permalink |

        “Everyone wants more speed looneys”?

        So what “is” the optimum speed, dial-up? Well after all we will never need any better will we ;-)

      • Hubert Cumberdale
        Posted 18/09/2012 at 7:06 pm | Permalink |

        “It is the likes of TPG who might just save the NBN from the “everyone wants more speed” looneys”

        I doubt it. Most people signing up for NBN plans are going for the 25/5, 50/20 and 100/40mbps plans. This plan from TPG will only exist to satisfy the minority of dummies that believe the “majority of people who are quite well served by 8 or 6 or even the 2-3 Mb/s” and cant recognise a better deal if it slapped them in the face.

        “but be able to offer enough genuinely different plans that there is something for everyone”

        yep, great thing the NBN came along, currently we are limited to the speed we get with ADSL2+, now we’ll be able to choose the speed we get based on our wants/needs/budget. Something for everyone. Everyone wins. Glad we got that sorted.

        “It has to offer the range of choices that results in everyone getting what they want and so wanting to sign up, not have to be forced to.”

        Forced? You must be confused, with the NBN you get to choose the speed you want. It’s not like ADSL2+ at all.

        “even the people YOU think are stupid for wanting what they want.”

        Tell us what you think of people who want more than 12/1mbps Gordin.

        “because they can’t afford huge unexpected bills for going over their quota.”

        If these people are poor you are suggesting that they are also stupid? How insulting, why wouldn’t they go for a shaped plan instead if that is the problem?

    19. c1phertxt
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 3:44 pm | Permalink |

      For people who are getting speeds in excess of 12Mbps, realise that this is just one of the plans to be offered by TPG.

      I’ve lived in Perth, Melb and Syd in the last 4 years. The avg speeds were in the range:
      Melb: 12-18 Mbps
      Syd: 10-14 Mbps
      Perth: 10-12 Mbps

      I pay approximately $49 pm and get approx 500GB of data every month. I don’t really use up my entire cap (avg around 200-300GB every month; love HD streaming and steam sales :P). I wouldn’t mind paying $80-$100 for a 100mbps variant of my plan (500GB cap) as I am certain that is all I need. Hell, I’d be happy to pay $100+ for 150Mbps. :)

      That said, content mirroring is becoming increasingly pertinent as even with a decent 12Mbps connection, services like Steam are excruciatingly slow… often averaging 100KBps-400KBps which makes downloading a 12-14GB game just ridiculous.

    20. Drew
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 7:19 pm | Permalink |

      “But as you get higher speeds, the amount of data you can such down a month increased rapidly. ”

      No, the amount of data does not grow “rapidly” with speed. It merely grows linearly. Twice the speed, twice the data.

      And that won’t necessarily be twice the price, if high volume wholesale discount rates apply.

      • NBNAccuracy
        Posted 19/09/2012 at 9:13 am | Permalink |

        There is another factor. Upload speed. 100Mb plans may be 8 times more download but the upload speed is 40Mb. These unlimited plans are loved by bit torrent users. That’s 40 times the uploads…

    21. Nich
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 7:21 pm | Permalink |

      …I wonder how the plan will go over wireless NBN connections.

      • Posted 18/09/2012 at 8:01 pm | Permalink |

        @Nich

        It won’t. Wireless is unlikely to include copper line rental for voice calls.

        But if you meant in terms of quota, wireless NBN plans aren’t far behind fibre plans actually. Maybe $20 more for the same quota, compared to the tens of dollars more using current fixed wireless.

        • Drew
          Posted 19/09/2012 at 6:25 am | Permalink |

          I don’t think wireless NBN works that way. The whole point of the design (implementing social policy) is that the wholesale price of both wireless and satellite, both restricted technically to 12 Mbps speeds, is the same as fibre at 12 Mbps. So it follows that retailers’ 12 Mbps plans will be the same both for fibre and wireless.

          • Posted 19/09/2012 at 10:17 am | Permalink |

            @Drew

            They’re priced similar, but not the same. Skymesh, one of the best wireless RSP’s, has their 100GB wireless for $5 more than the equivalent 12Mbps fibre plan. Iinet has the same price, but doesn’t have a top level usage plan on wireless. And don’t forget, the bundling of copper landline, via Telstra, will be more expensive than a bundles NBN Uni-V port too.

            It would be close to $20 difference once you take all of that into account.

    22. Keith C
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 9:27 pm | Permalink |

      Reading this (great article Renai) but I just want to chime in with a correction on the OVERSTATED so called “average” 6-7Mbps being quoted!

      Come on, we live in regional (Telstra dominated Zone 2 / 3 land) and we had MAX of 0.1 that is right ZERO POINT ONE Mbps for 22 months – that is right nearly two years, until we begun to see Telstra in the regions press, some of us wrote in CEO letters and we finally had an upgrade done the exchange!

      We now get 3-4 Mbps and are feeling it is like speeding along a freeway compared congestion central!

      So we look at your so called “average” speed numbers with some envy – Attention: those in Metro, please try to factor in the regional areas!

      I support the fibre Roll in from the regions BUT we have to wait it out for over three years – a lot can happen in that time!

    23. Joel
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:27 pm | Permalink |

      My unreliable ADSL2+ controls my teenage kid so anything unlimited will need to wait.

    24. Guest
      Posted 18/09/2012 at 10:38 pm | Permalink |

      i note they claim “upto 12Mb”. for the nbn, if you are on a 12Mb plan, you get 12Mb available all the time. No doubt tpgs contention ratio for these users is going to be complete crap

      • Paul K
        Posted 19/09/2012 at 8:29 am | Permalink |

        Many people choose these plans just to remove the hastle and family disputes that slowing causes. TPG’s ownership of pipe would allow it to service all of Australias overseas Internet needs at a pinch, I doubt they will have a problem supplying customers…

        However, I hope that $20 per meg NBN charge comes 1st, before the cost of connection. I like unlimited plans :) and the peace they bring to the family. You would be suprised how much stress they reduce.

    25. Paul K
      Posted 19/09/2012 at 8:30 am | Permalink |

      Woops, it should read

      However, I hope that $20 per meg NBN charge is lowered 1st, before the cost of connection is reduced.

    26. Wes
      Posted 20/09/2012 at 9:05 pm | Permalink |

      There are plenty (many) of us with ADSL2 connections who don’t get anywhere near 12Mbps.

      For us, a 12Mbps connection without a cap will be utter bliss.

    27. Johnny
      Posted 02/10/2012 at 12:07 pm | Permalink |

      why offer unlimited international calls? I prefer unlimited calls to national mobile phones. Is it because of how cheap it is? and nobody wants it? I dont need to call international numbers, if I did I wouldnt need much. It’s like giving a hungry person a handbag when they want food.

      • Richard Ure
        Posted 02/10/2012 at 12:20 pm | Permalink |

        The “unpopularity” of international calls means eliminating that from the plan is unlikely to reduce the price much. And when you own the pipe, the distance becomes less of an issue. In fact, it helps to find a use for the pipe.

      • Posted 02/10/2012 at 2:01 pm | Permalink |

        @Johnny

        Mobile calls are rarely included in any ‘unlimited’ type packs. Mobile calls are expensive to transfer between networks and particularly between landlines and mobile networks. Every time they are transferred, the originating network must pay a fee. This fee is much higher for mobiles then between landline networks (considering Telstra own ALL the copper and therefore are only virtually transferring the call via roughing, not physically on a different network). As Richard has pointed out, the unpopularity of international calls in general makes it a good gimmick to put in. Saying that, there would be many tens of thousands to whom unlimited international calls WOULD be attractive.

    28. Adam
      Posted 19/02/2013 at 3:11 pm | Permalink |

      If tpg can do a 50-80 dollar unlimited NBN with speeds of 25mb I think heaps of people will sign with them myself I down heaps of stuff but my main concern is the ping for gaming it will be better no matter what currently with dodo adsl2+ 60 a month and can only just get 1.9mb on ps3 and ping of 200ms to other side a Australia it’s pathetic tpg NBN here I come

    29. Adam
      Posted 19/02/2013 at 3:14 pm | Permalink |

      Also unsure but I hear that America Canada etc all plans are unlimited data u pay higher price for the better speeds eg 5mb s 20 month 10mb s 30 month etc all unlimited would be great

      • seven_tech
        Posted 22/02/2013 at 4:44 pm | Permalink |

        @Adam

        Also unsure but I hear that America Canada etc all plans are unlimited data u pay higher price for the better speeds eg 5mb s 20 month 10mb s 30 month etc all unlimited would be great

        That’s not true anymore at all. American ISPs are moving to caps because of teh HUGE increase in traffic from things like Netflix.

        All Unlimited is not feasible currently. Maybe in 10 or 20 years time when data costs come down substantially, but not now.

    30. Mark
      Posted 25/04/2013 at 12:32 am | Permalink |

      Particularly in northern European countries (Norway/Sweeden) is is very typical all ADSL/fiber plans are unlimited in download capacity. Plans differ only in speed and therefore cost.
      In fact I’m surprised just how cheap broadband cost are in Norway.. The biggest ISP is their national phone company Telenor, they might be owned by the government but they are operated like a business and therefore remain competative in the market..




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