The Australian Telco industry and the lack of plan innovation

60-second Intro

In recent news it seems like the big three national carriers this year, are offering more of the same when it comes to their new phone and contract plan offerings. With MVNOs establishing themselves in the market you would think the Telcos would change track. Read on in the following article to learn more.

  • When it comes to a great value SIM only plan, the MVNOs offer much more than the traditional national carriers.
  • It’s this lack of innovation when it comes to postpaid plans, which is seeing Telstra, Optus and Vodafone, continue to loose market share to the competition.
  • An increasing number of Aussies no longer care about loyalty to the carriers, they shop with their wallets and pick the best value SIM only plans on offer.

The traditional Telcos lacking in innovation

When it comes to innovation in Australia from the big three Telcos, it comes as no surprise their lack of innovation.

The traditional carriers are always slow to change their ways, even in the face of increasing competition.

Thanks to the numerous different MVNOs which have entered the Australian market.

But it’s this same lack of forward thinking from the national carriers, which is not helping them to increase their dwindling revenues.

Applying gimmicks to their plans and offering streaming content extras to subscribers, they are missing the fundamental basic point.

Most Aussies these days are not interested in buying a new smartphone on a locked in postpaid contract.

In fact, with the much higher monthly payments associated with these plans, buying outright has never looked as good.

BYO mobile phone and signing up for a great value SIM only plan is the way to go these days.

And an increasing number of Australians have cottoned onto this fact and are saying goodbye to postpaid contracts.

As each year passes, Telstra, Optus and Vodafone continue to offer the same deals as they did the year before.

While not everyone can afford to buy a new smartphone outright, in the long run it does work out cheaper.

As we’ve shown many times before here on Whatphone, in most cases it can work out to be 30% cheaper.

SIM only prepaid plans are the future

Back in the day if you wanted the latest new smartphone you had to sign up for a poor value postpaid contract.

Most people knew that they would be locked into that carrier for two years, unable to take advantage of future better deals.

Telcos sold these postpaid contract plans as a “free mobile phone” in exchange for two years of loyalty.

Today though mobile device manufactures are selling their smartphones outright, like Google with their Nexus range.

This gives consumers choice to buy the phone outright and than shop around for a great value SIM only plan.

Not being locked into one carrier for a period of time gives choice and flexibility back to Aussie consumers.

A one size plan does not fit all, that’s where MVNOs such as Yomojo with their customisation tool are a great deal.

Some people dislike the idea of being stuck on a postpaid contract, locked in and unable to move carriers.

But, these same people might not have the funds to purchase an expensive new smartphone outright.

Than there are other consumers which are happy to choose postpaid plans, preferring to be loyal to their chosen carrier.

Year after year extending their contracts and being given a new, next generation smartphone every two years.

Telcos offering mobile upgrades mid-contact

In fact Optus recently announced that eligible postpaid mid-contact subscribers, would now have the ability to upgrade to a new mobile phone.

After the initial 12 month period of the two years postpaid contract, eligible Optus subscribers could trade their current smartphone in for a new one.

A service fee of $99 would apply and the existing mobile device would need to be in good working order.

At the time of being issued with a new smartphone, a new contract for a period of two years would be put into effect.

For Aussies which are not happy with the national Telcos and don’t want to be locked into long term deals, MVNOs provide great value.

Local company’s such as Amaysim and Yomojo give customers flexibility and choice, through customisation.

With each year passing more Aussies are choosing to buy their smartphone outright.

At the end of 2015 it was reported that around 59 percent of Australians purchased their mobile phone outright.

With that number sure to grow in the coming years, the national Telcos need to wake up or end up left behind.

The Australian marketplace has never been as competitive as it is right now.

With MVNOs offering amazing cut priced deals, generous mobile data allowances and exclusive ad-on extras.

It is moves such as this which are drawing subscribers away from the traditional carriers.

In Conclusion

In Australia thanks to increasing competition, Vodafone and Optus both offer SIM Only plans. Vodafone has a leasing scheme for phones. Telstra has “that new phone feeling”.

The SIM Only market is becoming more competitive, opening up prepaid and postpaid options.

This is causing the market to become more acquisition promotional based and more responsive to pricing.

People are moving from carrier to carrier more and ultimately, consumers are getting the pricing they need.

In Australia, there’s still a way to go. There should be more competition from MVNOs on 4G pricing for Vodafone and Telstra.

Vodafone currently only offer 4G network services through their partnership with TPG, an Aussie ISP and MVNO.

Telstra has launched Boost, but they are currently the only MVNO on the Telstra 4G network.

There also needs to be more contract SIM Only options with lower pricing. Things are much cheaper in the

In the UK there’s a lot of competition from MVNOs and quad play deals mean people with broadband often go with the companies they use for broadband to get their SIM Only plan.

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.