Telstra today announced it would launch its "first smartphone plan with unlimited data, giving customers the freedom to stream, surf and share without worrying about additional data charges on the nation’s best mobile network".
It's a good thing this deal didn't come out on April 1, because maybe people wouldn't have believed it, with the other good news being a 40GB data cap, almost double the data cap before speed throttling that you see on US networks (where the cap is from 23GB depending on the US carrier you choose).
Available from 3 May and priced at $69 per month on a 12-month plan (min cost $828), the Telstra Endless Data BYO plan comes with:
- unlimited data, including 40GB of data at uncapped speeds followed by peace of mind data capped at 1.5Mbps for the remainder of the month – fast enough to stream video in standard definition, listen to music, browse the Web and access social media.
- the plan also comes with unlimited talk, text and MMS to standard Australian numbers plus exclusive extras available to Telstra mobile customers, including
- unlimited Wi-Fi data at more than one million Telstra Air hotspots around Australia, and
- access to every AFL, NRL and netball game this season live and fast.
“We know how important it is to our customers that they can access the fastest speeds available to them on our network. That’s why our unlimited plan comes with 40GB of data to enjoy at uncapped speeds, unlimited sports action, and then data capped at 1.5Mbps to get customers through the month if they need it.
“We have invested billions in our network, pioneered world-leading 4G speeds and pushed our 4G coverage out to more than 99 per cent of the population. We are now introducing the unlimited plan Australians tell us they want while maintaining the superior network experience they expect.
“We know many customers love our existing plans and we will continue to offer our popular handset, leasing and BYO plans that now include our most generous data inclusions on record. The addition of our Endless Data BYO plan gives customers even more choice when looking to use a smartphone on Australia's largest and most reliable network.”
To make sure all Telstra customers — including those taking up the Endless Data BYO plan — enjoy a great network experience, Telstra said it has "invested $5.5 billion in its network over the past three financial years, increasing capacity to cater for significant growth in mobile data use and extending coverage to 99.4 per cent of the Australian population".
Also announced today are a refreshed line up of other mobile plans and offers. A key summary (separate article to follow):
- "24 months free Foxtel Now on select post paid plans (perfect for being in the know for Season 2 of Westworld)".
- "The most generous data inclusions to date across its post paid plans (majority of these plans are getting 30% more data) with data allowances up to 170GB a month".
- "SIM only MX plan now offering 15GB for $49 a month".
- "Double data on every recharge of $40 or more for all Telstra Pre-Paid Extra customers. This bonus data will be added to the customer’s data bank (provided it does not exceed the 50GB databank limit)".
Telstra reminds us that its network milestones include:
- Introducing the world's first gigabit-enabled network coverage using sophisticated LTE-Advanced technology to boost capacity and speed
- Increasing the number of mobile network sites to more than 9,200 nationally
- Commencing a national rollout of small cells that will bring additional mobile capacity and
performance to the busiest locations across Australia’s capital cities
- Expanding 4G coverage to 99% of the population and a landmass area of 1.6m sq.km and 3G coverage to 99.4% and a landmass area of 2.5m sq.km, bringing world-class mobile technology to parts of rural and regional Australia that historically have little to no mobile coverage
- Extending calls over Wi-Fi calling to millions of Australians, improving mobile voice calls for customers who experience in-building mobile blackspots
- Expanding out Telstra Air Wi-Fi network to more than one million hotspots around Australia so mobile customers can access unlimited free Wi-Fi data in more places.
As you'd expect, Telstra states that "the Endless Data BYO plan is for personal use in a smartphone only. After 40GB, speeds capped at 1.5mbps and slowed further during busy periods (not suitable for HD video or high speed applications)," and that its "FairPlay Policy also applies."