Where to Buy Mobile Broadband Plans

Mobile broadband is becoming more portable and cost-effective

How mobile broadband works

Mobile broadband is worth considering if you have a poor WiFi network or you’re constantly working on the go with your smart device.  And in case you’re wondering how it works, you should know that mobile broadband comes in three types:

  • The USB dongle
  • The mobile WiFi, and
  • SIM cards.

The type you select is dependent on how many devices you need to connect to the Internet. You also have to consider whether you prefer to plug it into the power outlet, or insert directly into your laptop or smart device.

Mobile broadband used to be expensive. These miniature gadgets that now connect everyone to the internet were once exclusive to corporate professionals in snazzy suits. Fortunately, those days are behind us.  However, a mobile broadband is still more expensive than a fixed line plan, sometimes costing up to 1333x more.

To avoid excessive costs, you should know the best mobile broadband deals out there, and we’ve put them together for you. No matter the plan, big or small, these are the best places to buy mobile broadband and their data prices:

Optus mobile broadband

Optus has a Home Wireless Broadband that’s targeted at people who need an Internet connection without dealing with the arduous challenges of setting-up wired cable internet or NBN. If you’re a student, renter, or you’re house-sharing, the Optus mobile broadband package is right up your street. It’s a portable package that you can use if you relocate elsewhere.

Optus has an entry level plan that begins at $15 for 5gb and goes up to $50 for 75gb allowance. The download speeds range between 20Mbps to 100Mbps using a 4G connection while you can get warp speeds of up to 1Gbps if you purchase their 5G mobile broadband and reside in a location with 5G coverage.

However, they have some questionable reviews as a lot of unhappy customers are venting about their dissatisfaction with the service.

Telstra mobile broadband

Telstra has a 4G WiFi hotspot that’s slightly larger in size than Optus’s 4G modem. However, Telstra edges out Optus on functionality – its product comes equipped with an LCD display with certain functions embedded.

The WiFi Hotspot runs on Telstra’s 1800Mhz Band. A noticeable advantage the WiFi hotspot has compared to the Optus 4G WiFi Hotspot is that Sierra wireless equips it with quite a few add-ons including a dedicated antenna, larger battery, and watcher apps courtesy of Android and iOS.

if you reside in a 4G area, expect to get download speeds that are 2-50 Mbps. Telstra has a mixed bag of reviews with many users unsatisfied with the quality of their service. The network provider has a 200GB data plan that retails at $75 per month.

Vodafone

Vodafone is one of Australia’s biggest telecom operators, and its mobile broadband is the Vodafone pocket WIFI-2, nabufactured by Chinese tech giant Huawei. The six hours battery life may not be the ideal option for those who work in remote areas. However, you are able to get up to 10 connections on your Vodafone mobile broadband device.

The entry level for Vodafone mobile broadband is $15 monthly for 5GB of data going up to $60 each month for 100GB. However, you’d have to lock in your plan to assume this rate.

Like the other TelCos, Vodafone has lots of grumpy customers; on top of a more expensive data plan

Final words – Other mobile broadband providers

An MVNO purchases network service from one of the big telcos at wholesale prices, then resells to the final consumer. The lower operating cost, smaller budget, and flexible handset stock allows them to provide the same service at a cheaper price.

Another thing worth noting is that an MVNO will provide flexible service that allows you to opt out at anytime if you don’t enjoy the virtual network. You could also receive the same value and sometimes even better deals when you subscribe with an MVNO than with a big telco.

However, there’s usually a downside. You may have slightly slower service while users on the major networks will be prioritized over you in situations where the network is congested.

Note, however, that it’s not advisable to buy a mobile broadband service from an MVNO if you intend to use your phones outside the country.

 

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.