news National broadband company iiNet has launched a new range of naked DSL broadband plans — simplifying its plan structure by offering customers a single download quota of one terabyte for the cost of $69.99 per month — as well as revamping its VDSL plan structure on TransACT’s FTTN network in Canberra.
The base version of the new plans costs $69.99 per month and comes with an Internet telephone connection (Voice over IP), but no standard calls. For an extra $10 per month the company will include “local and standard national calls”, while for a further $10 per month the company will also include “standard Australian mobile calls”.
If customers sign up for a two-year contracts they will have to pay a $79.95 activation fee to get on the plan, while those who don’t sign up for a contract will pay a $99.95 activation fee. Customers who sign up for a plan will get a free Wi-Fi broadband modem included (with a $10 delivery fee), while customers not on a plan will need to bring their own modem or pay $89 for the same Wi-Fi broadband modem.
The company has also launched new VDSL plans on the Fibre to the Node network owned by iiNet subsidiary TransACT in Canberra.
The company’s new VDSL plans also start at $69.99 per month, for a plan that comes with a terabyte of data quota. That cost includes the company’s Internet telephony service and local and ‘standard’ national calls. As with the company’s new naked DSL plans, the new VDSL plans can be upgraded.
The company’s entry-level VDSL plan is artificially capped at speeds of 30Mbps down and 5Mbps up, but if you pay an extra $10 per month you get the full speeds of up to 80Mbps.
Note that higher speeds may be possible. The writer of this article has a TransACT FTTN VDSL broadband connection, and regularly exceeds 90Mbps.
If you pay an extra $10 beyond that, for a total of $89.99 per month, you can also have ‘standard’ Australian mobile calls included.
However, some customers may baulk at the pricey installation fee. If you sign up to iiNet’s new plans on a two year contract, you’ll pay a $59.99 activation fee. But sign up without a contract, and you’ll pay much more — $159.99.
In general, the plan structure delivered by iiNet today appears to somewhat mimic the broadband plans of iiNet’s parent company TPG, which recent acquired iiNet.
TPG currently offers, for example, a naked DSL plan for $69.99 which includes unlimited data quota. There is not a huge practical difference between a one terabyte data quota plan and an unlimited quota plan if customers are using ADSL, due to the slow speed of ADSL networks meaning that they will typically not be able to download much more than 1TB per month in any case.
My opinion is that these currently look like pretty decent broadband plans from iiNet, and certainly better value for those on TransACT’s VDSL network in Canberra. I am currently paying a significant amount more for significantly less than I would get under iiNet’s new VDSL plan structure. I plan to switch to the new plan structure ASAP.
Do these new plans quietly announced by iiNet this week on its blog represent the first step in harmonising its product set with that of TPG? I’m not sure, but I would not be surprised. I’ll be watching closely to see what the company does next in terms of its product set.