Optus Ditching Free Social Networking Access For Its Contract Phone Plans

Optus is ditching one of the main selling points for its postpaid mobile plans: new customers will no longer receive unlimited access to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social networking sites.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

The offer has been removed from Optus' site for its postpaid plans, including its 4G options. Oddly, the unlimited option (which also covers Foursquare, eBay and MySpace) remains available for prepaid customers.

There were always restrictions that applied to the "unlimited" deal: it only covered browsing to the official sites, not the use of third-party apps or when phone owners clicked on links to external content within their feeds. However, for customers whose main on-phone activity was using social networking, the arrangement meant that a much lower data total was feasible.

Existing contract customers will continue to have the unlimited access option, but that won't continue after their 24-month contract expires, an Optus spokesperson confirmed to Lifehacker.

It's not yet clear if this will impact Optus resellers such as Amaysim, iiNet and Live Connected, all of whom also offer the unlimited access feature. Some have done so with a twist: Internode offers 150GB of social media data rather than an "unlimited" quantity. Given that Optus is continuing the deal on its own prepaid plans, I wouldn't anticipate those disappearing in the short term.


Comments

    So they increase the prices, decrease the data allowance now remove the data free sites.
    any other changes?

    I just had a quick look at the optus site, and noticed they have also put up the price of phone repayments. I only know this, as it was only last week my wife upgraded her phone as her previous plan had finished.

      They certainly did. $5/mth more. I recontacted the week before, the next week the same plans but the phone costs more. Glad I got in early

    I don't understand why people actually use Optus when there's so many resellers out there that beat their prices hands-down whilst giving you identical service (as it's all Optus infrastructure).

    I suppose it's the 'free' handsets in return for the contract lock-in or something.

    Been with Optus for 5 years. Once this contract is up I'm jumping ships. The only reason I'm with them is for the subsidised handset and 4G. In 18 months time other carriers should be onboard with 4G and I'll buy a handset outright. Sick of it.

    Internode offers 150GB of social media data rather than an “unlimited” quantity.

    Is that a typo? Because I don't see how 150GB of monthly data allowance for a handful of social networking sites is in any way limiting. I'm guessing it's meant to be MB not GB.

      Not a typo.

      I'm betting the optus reseller agreement probably includes a hard cap, probably a large hard cap that may as well be unlimited. Internode ight jsut be passing that through rather than take the cacluated risk that nobody will abuse it.

        Wow! That's a HUGE cap! Nice to see how costly mobile data truly is to the carriers (ie. not at all).

          Actually it's pretty tiny on an iphone 5. Cost me over 500MB for a couple of minutes scrolling through my newsfeed on facebook yesterday... I used to go on facebook a lot through my phone. Not anymore! i've gone over my 1.5GB data limit already and i've only had the stupid phone a day.

      150GB is a lot, but if you watch a lot of YouTube can be reached.

      The main point of the limit is to basically give people unlimited, but just not let people abuse it - such as running HD YouTube videos running 24x7 knowing they won't be charged for anything.

    With Optus removing this service how will it affect the little sister brands like Amaysim as they provide the same unlimited social networking feature?

    I just asked Amaysim to downgrade me from UNLIMITED to FLEXI due to the fact I struggle to make a lot of calls and don't use all the data on the plan ($39.90 for 4GB data, I had no issue spending that).

    If you can provide details relating to this it I would be great.

    Regards

    Has anyone else noticed the coincidental timing of this just after Facebook has introduced their photo back up feature? I'm sure that feature would use up a lot of data that telcos would rather charge for.

      That probably already didn't count, facebook video doesn't count towards current "unlimited social" for example

    I got rid of Optus after being with them for 25 years, the level of service has gone out the door and they are taking more and giving less. I jumped over to Vaya on a $17 plan, 2 gig data, $700 voice, free sms. I was on a Optus $60 business plan with less included value than what Vaya were offering. They even have a $12 plan which is 1.5 gig data and $500 calls. All plans have free social access. Only catch is you need to bring your own phone.
    I cant believe people still sign up with Optus.

      Optus started in 1992...... so they are 21 years old. How did you have a service with them before they existed?

        1981, buddy.

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