Cmobile versus Boost Mobile: The Lazy Man’s Guide To 30% Savings

Quick summary : CMobile vs Boost

If you have a 3G phone ( more than half of Australians do ) and you’re looking for good value mobile phone deals, Cmobile’s and Boost Mobile’s plans might be right for you.

We love Boost Mobile for spends of $20 or more where you need Telstra 4G coverage. Boost Mobile only offer prepaid plans which offer total cost predictability.

We tend to recommend Cmobile for plans under $20. Cmobile only offer postpaid plans which are seen by many as a more mature choice.

We don’t recommend either Boost or Cmobile to people who have 4G phones or want access to the Optus network. If you’re one of those people, we’d suggest you consider Amaysim, Bengido Mobile or OVO Mobile, all of which resell the Optus network.

Or you can see all of the plans we recommend on our compare all SIM Plans page .

Who are Cmobile and Boost Mobile ?

Boost Mobile are an international brand which have been around Australia for some time. They began operations here and in New Zealand way, way back in the year 2000.

Conversely, Cmobile is a relatively new entry to the Australian mobile phone market. They only began trading in 2013. In this short time they have built up a name for very competitive prices.

Boost’s best plans

Boost Mobile | Best Prepaid Data Rates On The Full Telstra Network

boost mobile logo




Prepaid | 28 day expiry | On The Telstra Mobile Network 3G+4G

Boost Mobile are a reliable brand. They are the only phone company other than Telstra to resell the full Telstra ‘Retail’ Network. With Boost you’ll get:

  • The full Telstra Mobile Network
    Other phone companies resell part of the Telstra Mobile Network. Only Boost and Telstra plans allow you access the whole thing.
  • Free streamed audio:
    Data free streaming of Apple Music (requires subscription) on top of the data included in your plan.
  • A range that includes 7 day and 28 day plans:
    Boost offer a selection of plans including 7 and 28 day variants.
  • Recharge options from $10 to $50:
    Boost have a total of 5 recharge options for their prepaid plans, ranging between $10 and $50.

Boost Mobile Plans For Your Mobile

  • Boost $20 PrepaidAdvertisement = Unlimited calls & SMS in Oz + 3GB data.
  • Boost $30 PrepaidAdvertisement = Unlimited calls & SMS in Oz +35GB (includes 15GB bonus data on first 5 recharges) data. 
  • Boost $40 PrepaidAdvertisement = Unlimited calls & SMS in Oz + 45GB  (includes 15GB bonus data on first 5 recharges) data. Half price offer. Now only $20, save $20!
  • Boost $50 PrepaidAdvertisement = Unlimited calls & SMS in Oz + 55GB  (includes 15GB bonus data on first 5 recharges) data.
  • Boost $70 PrepaidAdvertisement = Unlimited calls & SMS in Oz + 75GB  (includes 15GB bonus data on first 5 recharges) data.

All talk time and SMS for use in Australia to Australian numbers. All data is for use in Australia. You can learn more about this company in our Boost Mobile review.



Cmobile’s best plans on the Vodafone network


Cmobile’s best plans on the Telsra 3G network


Small Phone Companies bring you Major Savings

Both of these companies function as mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs for short). These small phone companies do not have their own networks. They lease access from Australia’s big three phone companies. They negotiate network access at wholesale rates. As a result, they have lower expenses (e.g. no network maintenance costs ) And that means they can afford to better prices than their larger competitors.

If you have your own mobile phone and you’re looking for a SIM-Only plans, you can easily save a third on what you would pay buying a phone and plan from one of the big three companies. ( Vodafone, Optus or Telstra).

Which network does Cmobile/Boost Mobile use?

  • Boost Mobile operates over Telstra’s 3G mobile network.
    Telstra has the highest coverage rating in Australia. 98.5% of the population have access to the Telstra 3G service. One of the big advantages of working with this network is their excellent coverage in rural areas. However, the absence of the faster speeds provided by 4G might is a factor that owners of 4G mobiles will want to take into account.
  • Cmobile offer a choice of both Telstra and Vodafone’ 3G networks.
    One of the most outstanding aspects of Cmobile’s service is that they work with both Telstra 3G and Vodafone 3G networks. The fact that they operate with both these major networks distinguishes them from many of their MVNO competitors.

Cmobile customers have the choice of a Cmobile Blue Plan over the Telstra 3G network (covering 98.5% of Australians) or a

Cmobile Red Plan over the Vodafone 3G network (covering 96% of Australians).

However, as is the case with Boost Mobile, Cmobile don’t include 4G service in their phone plans.

Both Cmobile and Boost both offer unlimited plans

Unlimited plans are now available in both postpaid and prepaid versions although Cmobile only offers the postpaid version.

If you make a large number of calls, and send many messages from your mobile phone each day, an unlimited phone plan is going to save you money.

Cheaper plans usually offer an allowance of at least 100 free call minutes each 30 days, but once you exceed this allowance those extra call minutes can be very expensive. The big plus of an unlimited phone plan is the freedom to make as many calls and send as many SMSs as you want within the country.

Unlimited mobile data is not included in these plans, but with data allowance of 5GB and more ( in Boost’s unlimited plan ) you should find your browsing and download needs are covered.

Although unlimited phone plans all include unlimited calls and SMS, there are significant price, additional features and service quality differences between the phone company deals.

If you are interested the first thing to do is make sure your mobile phone use really justifies the extra cost of an unlimited plan. For example, look at the most generous call minutes allowance you get on a limited plan, and ask yourself if you really spend more time than this on the mobile?

Who typically uses a Cmobile Plan?

Cmobile aims to appeal to everyone who is dissatisfied with the costs of their Telstra or Vodafone phone plan. In particular they aim to attract mobile phone users who are:

  • Interested in a postpaid plans :
    Postpaid phone plans suit users who want the freedom to use their mobiles as much as they want without having to get a recharge. Postpaid plans are generally seen as more convenient and a more mature cost.
  • Annoyed by confusing phone plans :
    Cmobile really focus on making their offerings simple, no-nonsense plans without any hidden charges.
  • Frustrated by dealing with support desks :
    Many phone companies have outsourced their support desks. That leaves them manned by non-native English speakers, and located overseas.
  • Fed up with getting entrapped in automatic call handling systems when they call the company with a simple inquiry.

CMobile offers are especially attractive to mobile phone users in the following situations:

  • Have a 3G phone :
    CMobile’s plans are 3G enabled. If you have a 4G phone, you won’t be getting data down to it as fast as is possible on some other plans.
  • Need Telstra coverage and spending less than $20 per month :
    In rural areas looking for a cheaper alternative to the Telstra network at a spend level below $20 per month..
  • Live in a city and spending less than $20 :
    Vodafone customers living in metropolitan areas who do not go through many mobile call minutes each day.

Who typically uses a Boost Plan ?

  • Have a 3G phone :
    In rural areas looking for a cheaper alternative to the Telstra network at a spend level below $20 per month..
  • Use a lot of data on the weekend :
    Boost’s plans are not stingy with the data. However, as a response to a change in the way data was managed by competitors in mid 2015, Boost added data to their plans in an interesting way. They offer extra data over the weekends. You can check out the specifics of the offer at the top of this page.
  • Spending $20 or more each month :
    Boost’s value comes in to play at $20 per month or above spend level.
  • Need Telstra 3G network access :
    Finally, Boost use the Telstra 3G network. It offers the best coverage of any Australian MVNO network. If you live outside a city, Boost’s plans will offer you the best coverage.

Can I keep my number if I move to these companies?

One of the factors that deter mobile phone users from changing companies is a concern that they cannot transfer their number. If you have been using a number for some time many of your relatives, friends and business contacts will have it on their phone contact lists, or even remember it by heart. A need to change the phone number when moving companies is certain to discourage customers shopping around.

Fortunately transferring mobile numbers is very easy to do now. The technical term for taking your phone number when you change companies is “porting.”

Boost Mobile say nothing stands in the way of porting your mobile number if:

  • You activate your Boost Mobile SIM card via chat or their phone line, but NOT if you activate it via their website.
  • Your mobile phone is unlocked.
  • The mobile is 850MHz compatible.

CMobile offers a simpler description of how easy it is to port your mobile number. All you have to do is supply your porting information when you sign up for a CMobile service. It is particularly important to give them your account number from your current phone company.

Once they have the information they need CMobile ensures your mobile number is smoothly ported. The actual porting takes place as soon as you receive your CMobile SIM card, and ask them to activate it.

What if I don’t like their service?

A major advantage of getting your phone service from CMobile and Boost Mobile is freedom from long term contacts. You pay for your service each month, so you can easily change provider if you are dissatisfied with their service or if you find a better deal. The ease with which phone numbers can be ported (transferred) also makes it simple to change company.

However, most people do not want to change their phone company at the proverbial “drop of a hat.” Both CMobile and Boost Mobile have their procedures for dealing with customer problems.

Cmobile state that they are :

committed to resolving your complaint quickly and efficiently. In working with you to resolve your complaint, we will treat you fairly, with respect, and comply with all applicable consumer laws….

If they cannot resolve your complaint immediately they commit themselves to resolving it within 15 working days. If you accept the resolution they say they will implement it within 10 working days. If you are still not satisfied you can turn to external resolution of the complaint through the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman, and other independent authorities.

Boost Mobile also offer their customers a commitment to try and resolve your service issue in the course of your first phone call to their Customer Care Line. If the representative is unable to satisfy your concerns the complaint is passed over to a manager. They “aim to resolve all customer complaints within 15 working days.” If you are unhappy at the proposed resolution you can turn to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman for assistance.

Hopefully you will have no need to go this far. If the social media forums are anything to go by, CMobile has earned itself a particularly good name for customer satisfaction.


Summing up

There’s a lot of competition for your business in the Australian mobile phone market. These days, you’ll have offers of Netflix from some and data rollovers from others. If you’re after a basic plan, they can be increasingly difficult to find.

Both Boost and Cmobile offer basic plans. Between them, they’ll provide you a prepaid option on Telstra and postpaid options on both Vodafone and Telstra’s 3G network. There are no ‘free’ ( included in the price ) options and, if you have a 3G phone, you won’t be paying extra for 4G speeds your phone can’t use.

There is, of course, a middle ground. If you want to consider access to either 4G speeds or the Optus network, we generally recommend Bendigo plans.

Neil Aitken

Having worked in 3 countries for 4 telcos on both voice and data products, Neil is in a position to give you the inside track. Get beyond the marketing messages to the best plan for you.