Virgin Deal Highlights Mobile 3G Issues

Virgin Deal Highlights Mobile 3G Issues
virginbroadbandVirgin Mobile is offering what looks like a good deal on buying a prepaid 3G broadband modem through Australia Post — but closer examination of the details reminds us why buying wireless broadband requires careful planning.

The deal (which runs until May 31) offers customers an additional 1GB of free downloads, in addition to the 300MB which is offered to all new customers. However, the fine print in this case is particularly important. All that data has to be utilised in the first 30 days after purchase.

You might think that’s a good case for setting your modem to download a bunch of torrents, but that’s also problematic: Virgin shapes peer-to-peer traffic to 32Kbps, and counts both downloads and uploads, so it’s hardly an ideal platform for that kind of activity.

Even if you think you can chew through that much data with regular downloads, you might have other issues. OzBargain (where I first encountered this deal) suggests that you might want to print out the original ad in case Virgin gets picky about honouring the extra data clause.



  • i’m still amazed that people sign up to these deals. in most cases, naked dsl suits most people looking for the freedom of not paying for line rental – costs the exact same amount to set up ($150 on iinet) – then you have a much larger download limit for very similar amounts, and blistering speeds in comparison. of course you cant take it everywhere you go, but 99% of family and friends that i know only use there wireless broadband at home anyway!

  • The problem is with naked DSL you need to have a phone line connected, for which you will need to pay Telstra a connection fee and also sign-up to a 12 month plan, then you need to break the 12 month plan when you sign-up to naked DSL with another provider.
    The up-front costs to get naked dsl can be quite large.

    • Michael,

      Naked DSL does not require a fixed line connected to a carrier i.e (Telstra) The only requirement is that their is a physical phone line to the residence.

      So, $150 setup fee and away you go is quite a good deal. You might not get the best download plans, however iinet offer VOIP with their plans, unlimited national phone calls included and cheap international calls.

      At the end of the day, it’s quite worth it.

  • I have one of these and it is fantastic. Used it for net when I moved and now as a backup when my adsl goes down.

    If you look at all the mobile broadband plans virgin is one of the few providers where you can buy credit/data that lasts longer than a month.

    As for comparison to adsl you are paying for mobility! and people who use there net for email/web only can still be better off on a mobile broadband plan.

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