Harbour ISP offers a range of contract phone plans on month-to-month, one-year and two-year terms.
Harbour ISP might be better known as a broadband provider – it's right there in the name, after all – but the Australian-owned and operated telco is also a player in the Aussie mobile space.
Using parts of Telstra's 4G network, Harbour ISP offers post-paid SIM-only mobile plans on 24-month, 12-month and month-to-month contracts, though oddly there's no price difference at all between them. In this case choosing anything other than the no-lock-in, month-to-month option makes little sense.
Harbour ISP SIM-only plans
Harbour ISP has data-lovers in its sights with its SIM-only plans. Monthly caps start at 4GB and go up to 10GB, while on the cellular front all three SIM-only plans include unlimited standard national calls to both landlines and mobiles along with unlimited SMS.
The three plans are as follows:
- Standard+, which includes 4GB of data and 100mins of international calls to select countries for $45 a month
- Super+, which includes 7GB of data and 300mins of international calls to select countries for $55 a month
- Max+, which includes 10GB of data and 300mins of international calls to select countries for $65 a month
International minutes included with Harbour ISP's SIM-only plans can be used to call landlines in the following 26 countries: Andorra, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Germany, Guam, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the USA. Calls to mobile numbers in China are also eligible for use with the included international minutes.
When signing up with Harbour ISP for the first time, you'll need to purchase a new Harbour ISP SIM card. This will be mailed out to you as part of the sign-up process, but you'll have to pay a one-off fee of $10 for it. This charge will be added to your first month's bill, with subsequent bills returning to the regular plan rate.
Even with its sizeable data caps, there's a chance you'll inadvertently go over your monthly quota. If this happens, Harbour ISP will charge you at a rate of 3c/MB for any data you use beyond your monthly limit.
How does Harbour ISP compare?
The post-paid SIM-only market is one of the most hotly-contested in the entire mobile space, and Harbour ISP is fighting for your dollar against prominent cut-rate competitors like amaysim, Spintel and Vaya. However, this is a fight it cannot win, as it simply doesn't offer the same value for money on either the data or the international calls fronts.
How does Harbour ISP's Standard+ plan compare?
As you can see in the table below, amaysim's 5GB plan gets you more data than Harbour ISP's Standard+ plan for just $30 every 28 days, a rate $15 cheaper than Harbour ISP. Meanwhile, Moose Mobile's 34 plan comes with $300 of international call credit along with a massive 10GB of data for just $34 a month, a huge savings over Harbour ISP's offering:
The one advantage Harbour ISP has over the likes of amaysim and Spintel is its network: while the latter use Optus' 4G network, Harbour ISP operates on parts of Telstra's 4G network. As the biggest mobile network in Australia, Telstra's infrastructure offers greater coverage and higher potential speeds, which you might find more valuable than bigger inclusions in some cases.
How does Harbour ISP's Super+ plan compare?
The competition doesn't get any less fierce at the higher price point of Harbour ISP's Super+ plan. In fact, the plan's included 7GB of data and 300 international minutes fall even further behind the inclusions offered by amaysim, Vaya and even Virgin Mobile. For $11 less a month, Vaya's Unlimited 44 plan packs 13GB of data and 200 international minutes, while Virgin Mobile's $50 plan gets you $150 worth of international credit plus 9GB of monthly data.
This disparity is plain to see in the table below:
Taking network infrastructure into account doesn't help Harbour ISP much either. Once again, the potential edge of Telstra's network is dulled by better offerings from CMobile and Telechoice:
How does Harbour ISP's Max+ plan compare?
Harbour ISP struggles most at the premium price point. Not only does its Max+ plan fail to offer the large data caps and generous international credit that plans from amaysim and Virgin Mobile do at cheaper prices, Telstra itself offers a high-end plan of better value for those who want the benefits afforded by the biggest network in Australia:
Why should you consider Harbour ISP?
Harbour ISP doesn't make a particularly compelling case for itself with its SIM-only mobile plans. Other providers offer bigger data caps and higher-value international call inclusions at cheaper prices, leaving Harbour ISP far behind in delivering bang for your buck.
On the other hand, if you're in the market specifically for a mid-tier post-paid plan that uses Telstra's 4G network, you could do worse than Harbour ISP's Standard+ plan. It isn't the best deal available – Telechoice takes the cake there – but it's competitive enough that it's worth considering.
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