Last week Aussie Broadband revealed that someone downloaded 35TB in one month on its network. This promptly resulted in them getting the boot for violating the telco’s fair use policy. With that in mind, here are some of the cheapest unlimited NBN plans to absolutely not even try to attempt downloading 35TB with. At all. For real.
While pushing an NBN plan to its limits may not be the best idea for booting reason, it’s certainly an impressive feat. 35TB is a lot of data. For reference, constantly streaming Netflix in 4K for an entire month would only use 8.1TB.
The 35TB bandit, as Gizmodo dubbed them, achieved this usage with a gigabit NBN plan. These are currently only available to those with FTTP connections and a small amount of HFC customers. They’re also the priciest option available. But what about us mere mortals not blessed by the FTTP gods? Is it possible to achieve similar over a lesser connection?
We’re certainly not encouraging anyone to push their NBN connection to the extreme — it could get you kicked off your ISP and it could also adversely impact other users in your area — but it’s still interesting to see exactly how different plans compare in terms of download potential.
Cheap unlimited NBN 100 plans
Tangerine currently has one of cheapest unlimited NBN 100 plans around, billed at $74.90 per month. This pricing lasts for your first six months, after which you’ll pay $89.90 per month. The plan is contract-free however, and Tangerine also offers a 14-day trial period. If you’re not happy within your first fortnight, you can get a refund of all plan fees. Tangerine won’t refund you if you buy a modem, but all Tangerine modems are unlocked.
Tangerine reports typical evening speeds of 83Mbps on its NBN 100 plans. If you were to constantly download at an average speed of 83Mbps, you could theoretically burn through as much as 900GB in a day, or 27TB in a month. Not that you should.
Superloop is running a discounted offer of its own, having cut $10 per month from most NBN plans. Once again, this discount lasts for your first six months. If you’re after an unlimited Superloop NBN 100 plan, these start at $79.90 per month. You’ll pay $89.90 per month after your discount runs out, but the plans are contract-free so you can leave whenever.
Superloop reports the fastest NBN 100 evening speeds of any major provider, clocking in at 90Mbps. With these kinds of speeds, you could download as much as 972GB in a day, or 29TB in a month. That’s not quite 35TB, but it’s close.
If you’d prefer to avoid promotional pricing, MATE is your best bet with a flat price of $79 per month for an unlimited NBN 100 plan. You can also save a further $10 per month by bundling with a MATE SIM-only plan. MATE’s mobile plans are powered by the Telstra network, and start at $20 per month for 5GB.
As with Tangerine, MATE reports typical evening speeds of 83Mbps on NBN 100 plans. That’s 27TB of download potential that you definitely shouldn’t use to the fullest.
Cheapest unlimited NBN 250 plan
If you really want to test the limits of a fair use policy – and you don’t – you could go for an NBN 250 plan.
MyRepublic has the cheapest NBN 250 plan around, priced at $109 per month. This gets you unlimited data at reported typical evening speeds of 150Mbps. That’s potentially 48.6TB in a month, assuming constant downloads at that speed. Where do you even store all that data?
Aussie Broadband and Superloop almost have identical NBN 250 plans, typically billed at $129 per month with typical evening speeds of 215Mbps. This means you could theoretically download 69TB over the course of a month. Nice.
Superloop is however currently offering a $10 per month discount on its NBN 250 plan for your first six months, bringing it down to $119 per month. You’ll pay the full $129 per month thereafter.
It’s important to remember NBN 250 plans are only available for a select group of NBN customers: all FTTP connections, and 70% of HFC connections. This represents roughly 32% of the customers currently able to connect to the NBN. NBN Co intends to upgrade the HFC portion of the network to ensure all customers can sign-up for an NBN 250 plan by June 2021.
Cheapest unlimited NBN 50 plans
Of course, not every NBN connection can even hit 100Mbps. Thanks, for that Malcolm. If you’re in this situation, you might be wondering about the download potential of NBN 50 plans.
Tangerine once again is your cheapest option thanks to a promotional discount. You’ll pay $59.90 per month for your first six months, and $69.90 per month thereafter. Tangerine reports typical evening speeds of 42Mbps for NBN 50 plans. If you’re totally not hammering the connection 100% of the time, you totally couldn’t download as much as 13.6TB in a month.
If you want to avoid timed discounts, Belong is worth a look, offering an unlimited data NBN 50 for $65 per month. This plan requires you to commit to a 12-month contract, however.
Belong reports slightly slower evening speeds, clocking in at 40Mbps. That gets you 12.96TB of download potential in a month.
If you really want to push your NBN 50 connection, iiNet currently reports the highest typical evening speeds on the speed tier: a zippy 46.7Mbps. That’s theoretically 15.1TB that you’re definitely not going to use. Unsurprisingly, iiNet’s NBN 50 plan is a little pricier, billed at $74.99 per month.
Alex Choros is Managing Editor at WhistleOut, Australia’s phone and internet comparison website.
As Kotaku editors we write about stuff we like and think you’ll like too. Kotaku often has affiliate partnerships, so we may get a share of the revenue from your purchase.