NOTE: This guide has been superseded. Click here for the most recent version. So far, we've seen proposed NBN pricing from Exetel, iiNet and Internode, and last week Internode adjusted its pricing, creating a more competitive playing field. Compare all the current options with our interactive Planhacker spreadsheet.
Picture by Dushan Hanuska
NBN uptake is still very much in its early days with a handful of pilot locations being live, and there will be many more providers offering services by the time the NBN is fully available nation-wide. However, it's still instructive to see how much the options vary at this stage. ISPs offering NBN services have to choose from a set of standard speed combinations, but beyond that they are free to set whatever policies they like in terms of download limits, shaping policy, contract length and other terms.
In the table below, we've listed the options available from Exetel, iiNet and Internode, the three ISPs we know of that have released general market pricing. We've included monthly fees; speeds; downloads limits; setup fees; contract lengths; minimum cost over the length of the contract; what speed your connection gets shaped to if you exceed those monthly limits, and whether those limits include uploads as well as downloads. Note that the setup fee doesn't include an NBN-ready modem (you'll have a range of these to choose from, depending on the provider).
While there are a large number of plans, you can sort and filter the table by clicking on the arrows in each column header, so that you can (for instance) only see plans running at 100/40, or sort in order of total download limits or prices.
A few notes: iiNet's plans include matching peak (8am-2am) and offpeak (2am-8am) components. In the table, we've only listed the peak component. (Yes, you can schedule downloads to take advantage of off-peak, but for comparison purposes we're concerned with connectivity you can use when it suits you.)
Exetel is the only provider which doesn't count uploads and has the most generous shaping speed, but it also has the smallest overall download limits. Internode has dumped its previous approach of requiring a bundled phone service (though in practice bundling VOIP could be a good strategy with all providers). Internode is also the only no-contract option currently available. Its shaping speed is low, but you can pay extra for higher shaping speeds or additional data bundles, and it has the highest download limits overall.
For full details of each plan direct from the provider, hit the links below:
Any plans stand out for you? Know of others we should add? Tell us in the comments. (I'm sure we'll be revisiting this topic again in the future as additional providers appear.)