Thursday, September 1, 2016

Australian Mobile Companies Compared! Who's Cheaper With Better Value?



Before the iPhone 7 is released, I thought it would be interesting to see what prices are like these days for an iPhone 6s 64GB on a 24 month contract. And wow, prices just keep going up, don't they? They seem to be getting more expensive every year! Can't wait to see how more they go up for the iPhone 7.

In this post, I'm going to be comparing the big four Australian telecommunication companies; Optus, Virgin Mobile, Vodafone, and Telstra, to see which one offers me the best plan at the lowest cost.

The criteria will be; plan cost, and value between calls, text, and most importantly, data! I am not comparing how supposedly great their coverage is or how bad their customer service is. I am assuming for this that you are in a city / suburban area, so coverage isn't a problem. Also I'm not looking at if the customer wants to upgrade again next year. This will be assuming that you plan to keep the iPhone for 24 months. Also I will not be including any extra benefits like data exclusions to Spotify or a 6 Month Apple Music membership, etc...  

First important part to this, is to work out what an iPhone 6s 64GB sells for (brand new from Apple) today. And that is $1,229.00. Over the course of 24 months the price would divide to $51.21 per month.  This is important for when we compare phone payment costs to the plan itself.

First up, lets look at

Optus:

At Optus, I could go on the $84 iPhone plan (a $40 plan plus $44 phone payments) and receive 1GB of Data and Unlimited Calls and Text in Australia. 

Or, their recommended plan of $91 per month ($65 plan, $26 for the iPhone) and receive 3.5GB of Data, Unlimited Calls and Text, and also get 150 minutes of International Calls. 

However, if I buy the iPhone outright from Apple, I could go on a 12 month Optus Sim Only plan, pay $30 per month and get Unlimited Calls and Text and 1.5GB of Data, and only pay the equivalent of $81.21 per month. That's $2.79 cheaper per month ($66.96 over 24 months and the difference of 12,000GB more data).

Or better yet, how about their $40 Sim Only Plan (for 12 months) which'll get me the same Unlimited Calls and Text, but a huge 8GB of data! And 300 minutes of International Calls. Total per month with our outright iPhone 6s payment divided, equals $91.21 per month. Extra 21 cents per month for and extra 4.5GB of data a month? Worth it!

Optus summary: Buy the iPhone outright and get a Sim-Only plan for 12 months! It'll be better value.


Next up, the network that uses the Optus Network, so is pretty much the same as going with Optus;


Virgin Mobile:

At Virgin mobile their cheapest iPhone 6s 64GB plan is $67 ($30 plan plus $37 for phone). But, they only give you $300 worth of calls and a measly 300MB of data. We already have Optus to compare with, so lets look at a higher plan.

$76 per month! Unlimited Calls and Text within Australia and 1GB of Data. This is the equivalent plan to Optus's $84 plan. Which means, Virgin Mobile, the company that uses the Optus Network remember, is $8 cheaper per month. $192 cheaper over the length of your contract, for the same plan!

Lets go even higher, we want to find the equivalent (cost) plan to the Optus $91 plan. And that'd be Virgin mobiles $90 plan. It includes Unlimited Calls and Text within Australia and 6GB of Data! That's 2.5GB more than Optus, per month.

What about their Sim-Only plans? $40 will get you 7GB, Unlimited Calls and Text and $200 worth of standard international calls. Throw in another $10 to get 10GB Data, and $300 of international. Compared to Optus? The Sim Only plans seem a little more worth it from Optus.

Virgin Mobile Summary: If you were to get a iPhone and Plan, Virgin Mobile has cheaper plans and offers better value for your money than Optus.


Vodafone:

Over at Vodafone you can get the iPhone 6s 64GB for $96 per month, which includes "Infinite" standard national calls and text and 6GB Data.  Since this plan is already more expensive with little difference to the Virgin mobile $90 plan - we shall move on!

By the way, their SIM Only plan, less value on Data than Optus.

Vodafone Summary: More expensive than Virgin mobile, however still more Data than Optus gives for at the similar price, unless you go on a SIM only plan from Optus, which then Optus offers a better deal.



Lastly,


Telstra:

Telstra didn't have a great year, with a few network dropouts that lasted hours! Lets see how their plans compare.

On the Telstra Network, they'll give you a iPhone 6s 64GB starting from $95 per month with 1GB Data and $550 "talk time"...

Should I really even bother going on? ...Fine. What do they recommend?

Their "L" plan (I guess that stands for 'large' or it could be 'loser'), includes Unlimited Talk, Text and MMS, and 8GB of data for...

$121 per month.

Go **** yourselves!

Telstra Summary: Stay the **** away from Telstra, unless you want to be ripped off, in my opinion!



Conclusion:

I really hope the Australian telecommunication companies see this post and create some better and more competitive plans for the iPhone 7. And not just use it as an excuse to raise the price even more.

So who won this? Definitely the mobile companies. 'Cause the customers ain't, that's for sure!

But, really, from these calculations, the best deal for a iPhone 6s 64GB and a Plan together (today, September 1st 2016) was with Virgin Mobile on their $76 or $90 plan, depending on how much data you'd like.

But more surprisingly, the best solution would be to buy the iPhone 6s 64GB outright and go on the Optus SIM Only $40 plan for 12 months. It gets you unlimited calls and text, and 8GB of Data for a combine cost equalling $91.21 per month (over 24 months).

My message to the phone companies, firstly, well done for ripping us all off. Now;

To Optus: Why is Virgin Mobile's contract plans cheaper than yours! They use your network! Why should I choose you over Virgin Mobile?

To Virgin Mobile: Well done on offering competitive prices.

To Vodafone: You guys are still around? I thought you went out of business. Lower your prices.

To Telstra: I think I summed up my thoughts on you above, but I don't care how great you think your network coverage is, for someone who lives in city areas, it doesn't matter! I've had no issues with other companies I've used. You are well overpriced! I don't know why anyone would choose to give you money!

For everyone else, thanks for reading, if you liked this piece or maybe learned something, please share! And leave a comment below on which company are you with and why.


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