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Unlimited NBN plans

If you like to binge Netflix or download the latest video games, you'll probably need unlimited NBN internet.

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If you need peace of mind about your downloads, Unlimited NBN plans will let you watch, stream and game as much as you like, without worrying about speed caps or data charges. Most typical NBN consumer plans feature unlimited data these days, so you'll have plenty of options for provider and plans.

Start comparing your options below (you can play around with the filters until you find a speed and price combination that works for you) - or learn more about data and what activities use the most below the table.

Best Unlimited NBN plans (Standard Plus 50Mbps)

Woman holiding smartphoneWe rank our internet plans by calculating overall value, weighing price, speed, data, contract length and more. To find the 'best' plans in a given category, we filter our broadband engine for the top plans matching that criteria. Check out our ranking guide for more info.

Why should I get an unlimited NBN plan?

The faster your internet connection, the quicker you'll reach your data limit. Switching to a high-speed NBN plan could result in your existing data allowance running out a lot faster. With limited data, exceeding your monthly limit can result in your connection being slowed to a crawl. Even browsing basic web pages can become a miserable experience.

Here are some of the key reasons for considering an unlimited broadband plan:

  • No speed throttling. What this means is that you can browse the internet without fear of your provider slowing your speed down.
  • It's easier to commit to longer-term contracts. With an unlimited NBN plan, you have the certainty of knowing you haven't picked a plan with a data allowance that is too low. You can confidently sign up for a cost-effective long-term contract and potentially save a significant chunk of cash.
  • No surprise bills. Without a data limit, you won't ever go above it and have to pay for the extra.
  • You're future-proofed. Imagine getting a new Ultra-HD streaming TV set only to discover that it quickly chews through the limits of your Internet plan. Choosing an unlimited plan ensures that your data limit will keep up with your lifestyle.
  • Pick your provider. Nowadays almost all internet providers have an unlimited plan on offer, so you can choose between them and pick the one that suits you best.

How can I compare unlimited data plans?

While all unlimited data plans provide the same major feature, there are still a lot of ways that one plan can differ from another. Here are the most important things to look for when comparing plans:

  • Cost. Obviously, cost is a big factor when it comes to choosing a plan. Be aware that it's not only the monthly rate you need to worry about but the set-up and connection fees, too. Some providers will charge you a surprising amount just to get your NBN set up, even if you're signing onto a long contract.
  • Speed. All the data in the world isn't particularly useful if your connection isn't very fast. NBN connections fall into four different speed tiers that we explain below, but you should decide how fast a connection you need. Depending on the way NBN is connected to your property, you might not have access to a higher speed plan.
  • Contract types. Here, you should check about how long the term of your contract is as well as whether no contract options are available, too. Locking into a 24 month contract may reduce your set-up fee, but if you don't like your plan you'll have trouble changing. A no-contract unlimited NBN plan is a great option if you desire extra flexibility or don't know where you'll be living a few months from now.

Does unlimited really mean unlimited?

In almost all cases, the answer is yes. Australian Consumer Law guarantees customers being sold an unlimited data plan really do receive unlimited data. Reasonably, no matter how much data you end up using, you won't have your speed lowered or your connection cut off.

However, pretty much every provider has a 'fair use' policy as part of their service, which lets them cut off your service if you have excessive data usage. There's no need to stress about this too much - it would take a heavy internet user downloading at top speed 24/7 to actually reach what most providers term excessive usage.

How much does it cost?

Most unlimited NBN data plans range from around $60 - 100 per month. The variation in price depends upon a number of factors, including:

  • Speed. The faster your connection, the more it's going to cost you. Make sure you know what speed you need based upon what you use your internet for. Getting a faster connection than you need will cost you plenty extra for little benefit.
  • Length of contract. As a rule, the longer the contract you sign up for, the lower your initial set-up fee will be. Longer contracts rarely mean lower ongoing costs, just a smaller initial investment
  • Modem. If you don't already have your own NBN capable modem, you'll have to purchase one to get your connection set up. Every provider has a different modem they'll sell you as part of their set-up costs, and these can vary widely in price as well as delivery fee.
  • Bonus features. Some NBN unlimited plans provide things like bonus entertainment bundles. These can drive up the ongoing cost of the contract as well as involving a decent set-up fee of their own.

Who is an unlimited plan good for?

Since unlimited NBN data plans are the default for most providers now, you could say that unlimited plans are good for everybody. But in reality, not everyone needs one.

Internet providers still offer plans with a 100 GB or 200 GB data cap which will save you about $10 per month over an unlimited data plan with a similar speed. If you ever go above that limit, though, you'll face throttled speeds and extra charges.

With that in mind, here's who should consider an unlimited data plan:

  • Households where multiple people use data
  • Online gamers
  • People who stream a lot of videos or television series
  • People who download big files frequently

What speeds can I choose from?

While unlimited NBN plans can come in a wide variety of speeds, the plans offered to consumers are grouped into four tiers. Providers express NBN data rates using an 'average evening speed' in megabits per second (Mbps) which gives your likely download speed during the busiest time of the evening, between 7 and 11pm.

The tiers are instead defined by the maximum rate you can achieve on a given connection - be aware, your actual rate will likely be lower than this.

  • Basic (NBN 12). Max download 12 Mbps, max upload 1 Mbps. Suitable for light internet users.
  • Standard (NBN 25). Max download 25 Mbps, max upload 5Mbps. Suitable for video streaming and small households.
  • Standard Plus (NBN 50). Max download 50 Mbps, max upload 20 Mbps. Suitable for heavy internet use, gaming, and high-quality streaming.
  • Premium (NBN 100). Max download 100 Mbps, max upload 40 Mbps. Suitable for small businesses and large households of heavy internet users.

Do you need unlimited calls on your broadband plan?

If you don't want or need a fixed phone service, you may want to look for an NBN plan that features a pay-as-you-go phone service or no phone service at all to help keep costs down. However, if you make a lot of calls, it can be worth looking for a plan that offers unlimited phone calls along with unlimited data.

There are typically three different types of phone packages: phone calls to fixed lines only, phone calls to fixed lines and mobile phones, and phone calls to both fixed line and mobile phones as well as international calls to selected countries.

If you work from home or are running a small business, phone packages can be especially useful. Having a fixed-line service not only provides your customers with a reliable point of contact but also allows you to reach clients throughout the country and worldwide.

Unlimited calls can also be convenient for the same reason as an unlimited plan. With both unlimited calls and unlimited Internet, you can simply "set and forget" in a way you can't with other options. Similar to the Internet, you might find yourself making a lot more calls on a more generous plan. For a lot of people, these freedoms are well worth spending a bit more.

What uses up the most data?

It's pretty easy to use up your data caps these days. The following are the most data-intensive activities on the Internet. Some of them, like 4K streaming, were relatively rare a few years ago, but are now far more common.

Think about how many people are in your household, how many devices are being used and whether a capped plan will consistently be able to last a full month.

  • 4K streaming - 25Mbps. Also known as Ultra HD streaming, this level of visual fidelity is now widely available on services like Netflix. Streaming in 4K typically requires a connection of at least 25Mbps, which means it can potentially run through about 1GB of data after just an hour of viewing. Multiply this by the number of devices streaming in your household and you're looking at a lot of data usage each and every month.
  • Downloading/uploading files. A single game download can easily go over 50GB these days, while downloading an hour-long TV episode can use well over 1GB. High quality photos and online videos can also rapidly churn through data thanks to the ease of viewing. Uploading also counts towards your limits and sending videos and photos in particular might bring you close to the limits of a capped plan.
  • Backing up your data to the cloud. This is especially important for business purposes, but it is useful for personal purposes too. The amount of data used by cloud backups depends on a range of circumstances. For example, a wedding videographer who works from home could easily run through 100GB+ per week, while someone using it just to back up their music collection would have considerably lower usage.
  • Video calls. As with other video usage, the data required depends on the video quality which is affected by your webcam and streaming method. While video calls tend to use less data compared to other streaming options, someone who wants to make multi-hour calls on a near-daily basis might quickly use a lot of data.
  • Gaming. Playing an online game by itself doesn't generally use a lot of data, but downloading them can. With game sizes of 50GB to 100GB becoming more common, and downloading now being the main way of buying games, one enthusiastic video gamer in your household might very easily be responsible for 50GB-100GB of data use each month.
  • Web hosting. If you're hosting a personal or business website from your premises, then every time someone views your site you'll be uploading that data to them. For example, ten visitors who each access 50MB of site content will use 500MB altogether. Consider how important your site is to you and how likely it is that there will be sudden traffic influxes of hundreds, or thousands, of visitors to your site. If this happens with a limited plan, you might suddenly find yourself at the cap, even if it's just the start of the month. External web hosting services, or unlimited plans, might be a good idea in this situation.

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