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Telstra mobile broadband

Pick up a mobile broadband plan from Telstra and get a modem thrown in on a 24-month contract. 5G speeds now available on select plans.

Telstra has a bunch of different mobile broadband plans to suit you, no matter how much data you're after, or whether you want prepaid or postpaid. It even has 5G access with two of its plans.

Compare Telstra mobile broadband plans here

Choose between Telstra's month-to-month postpaid data plans or its prepaid mobile broadband options. You can bring your own device, or bundle one from Telstra with your plan.

What is Telstra mobile broadband?

Telstra has two kinds of mobile broadband plans: SIM-only postpaid data plans, and prepaid mobile broadband. Currently, Telstra is currently the only provider to offer 5G speeds on its mobile broadband plans; Optus's 5G is limited to its normal mobile plans and home wireless.

SIM-only data plans

These plans all run month-to-month, and you can either bring your own mobile broadband device/tablet or get one from Telstra, which you can pay off over 24 months. There are four plans available:

  • Extra Small. 5GB for per month.
  • Small. 20GB for $25 per month.
  • Medium. 60GB for $55 per month. Allows 5G network access.
  • Large. 200GB for $85 per month. Allows 5G network access.

Once you've hit your data limit for the month, you won't be charged for excess usage, but you will have your download speed capped at 1.5Mbps (slower during busy periods).

Prepaid mobile broadband

Telstra's prepaid mobile broadband plans let you either buy a device outright or provide your own. Only the 12GB, 40GB and 180GB options are available as starter packs, but once you have your SIM you can recharge with any of the following:

  • 5GB for $20 with 14 days expiry.
  • 12GB for $30 with 28 days expiry.
  • 35GB for $50 with 28 days expiry.
  • 40GB for $150 with 12 months expiry.
  • 180GB for $300 with 12 months expiry.

Unused data rolls over on the 14 and 28-day plans if you recharge before expiry. These plans also include data-free sports and Apple Music streaming.

Telstra mobile broadband devices

It's not compulsory to purchase one of Telstra's mobile broadband devices if you want a plan, since you can always BYO device. However, if you don't already own a device, you can get a range of different hotspots and mobile broadband modems from Telstra on a contract or outright.

Once you have your device, simply pop in your Telstra mobile broadband SIM and get online.

Contract plan devices

You can add these to a Telstra mobile broadband plan on a 12 or 24-month contract. If you leave your contract before its expiry, the early exit fee is equal to the remaining value of the device.

  • Netgear Nighthawk M2. $384 ($16/month on 24-month contract).
  • Telstra 5G Wi-Fi Pro. $599 ($24.95/month on 24-month contract).
  • Telstra 4GX Hotspot. $144 ($6/month on 24-month contract).
  • Telstra 4GX USB Modem. $99 ($4.12/month on 24-month contract).
  • Orbi 4GX Router with Satellite. $399 ($16.62/month on 24-month contract).

Prepaid devices

Each of the prepaid devices come with a certain amount of data to get you started. Unlike the contract devices, you can buy these ones outright. Keep in mind that they're locked to the Telstra network though and won't function with other SIM cards unless you unlock them.

  • Telstra Pre-Paid 4GX USB Modem. $49. Comes with 3GB of data.
  • Telstra Pre-Paid 4GX Wi-Fi Plus. $69. Comes with 5GB of data.
  • Telstra Pre-Paid 4GX Hotspot. $149. Comes with 20GB of data.

What speeds can you expect with Telstra mobile broadband?

The speeds that you can expect on your mobile broadband plan depend on whether you have 4G or 5G access. Only the Medium and Large SIM-only mobile broadband plans come with potential Telstra 5G network access, with all other plans (including prepaid) restricted to 4G.

Telstra's 4G speeds are typically between 2Mbps and 100Mbps in areas with decent coverage. 5G speeds can be anywhere from 50Mbps to 300Mbps, but this can be highly variable depending on your location and a bunch of other factors.

However, an eligible plan isn't all you need to get 5G. You'll need to be in a location with 5G coverage, as well as have one of Telstra's 5G-compatible devices (like the 5G Wi-Fi Pro).

How do Telstra's mobile broadband plans compare?

To give you an idea of how Telstra's mobile broadband plans stack up against the other major providers, we've compared plans from Telstra, Optus and Vodafone side by side.

Plan nameMedium SIM-only data planLarge Data SIM Plan40GB SIM-only data plan
Monthly cost$50$50$40
Included data60GB75GB40GB
Data per dollar spent$0.83 per 1GB$0.67 per 1GB$1.00 per 1GB
Extra featuresData-free sports streaming, data-free Apple Music streaming, Telstra Air, Telstra PlusData sharing, Optus SportNone

Telstra's plan measures up fairly well against the competition. It beats out Vodafone's offering easily in terms of value, providing data at a cheaper rate. Optus gives more data for the same price, but Telstra has the advantage of a bunch of extra features that Optus lacks.

Beyond this, Optus lacks plans with higher data allowances, whereas Telstra goes all the way up to 200GB per month with its Large plan, and Vodafone up to 100GB. So if you're looking for a bigger chunk of data, Telstra is a great choice.

How to recharge your Telstra mobile broadband plan

This advice only applies to prepaid mobile broadband, since the SIM-only plans refresh month to month. You can recharge in one of two ways:

  • Via the My Telstra app. If you've downloaded the My Telstra mobile app, use the service tab, choose the prepaid service that you want to recharge and click "Recharge now". Follow the prompts.
  • On My Account. Sign into your account on the Telstra website. Select the prepaid service you want to recharge, click "Recharge" and follow the prompts.

Telstra accepts the following payment methods:

  • Credit and debit cards, including Mastercard, Visa and American Express
  • PayPal

FAQ about Telstra mobile broadband

Does Telstra offer wireless broadband?

Yes, although mobile broadband will be your best and only option for the time being. While Telstra has announced a home wireless plan, it's only available to a limited number of customers on trial before being opened up to everyone.

Mobile broadband will be a better option if you're on the move, though, since you can take your modem or hotspot anywhere for Internet access. Home wireless is only really useful at a fixed location, such as your house.

How do I unlock Telstra's prepaid mobile broadband device?

The method for unlocking your prepaid mobile broadband device is the same as unlocking any mobile phone with Telstra. You'll first need your device's IMEI number, which is either located underneath the battery or in the "About" section when you visit http://m.home on a browser while connected to the device's WiFi.

After this, you'll have to contact Telstra's unlock team on 125 88 80, answer some ID questions and then pay an unlocking fee as follows:

  • $80 if your device has been active for less than 6 months.
  • $25 if your device has been active between 6 months and 2 years.
  • $0 if your device has been active for more than 2 years.

Finally, you'll be given an unlock code. You'll need to enter this on a browser connected to your device's Wi-Fi.

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