Author Topic: Australian Mobile Phone Options?  (Read 2325 times)

Kepler

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Australian Mobile Phone Options?
« on: November 29, 2013, 07:03:28 PM »
At the moment, my partner and I are on a $35/month (for both of us together) 'family' mobile phone plan that will expire in April and, because its provider has been bought out by someone else, can no longer be renewed.  We currently use the plan overwhelmingly to keep in contact with each other, which is free under the current service - whoever's with the kids tends to send photos and updates through the day to whoever's working (we have organised our work schedules so that we can split child care).  We also each use our phones to respond to work emails, which lets us be untethered from the office and work fewer hours, while still being available to put out random fires.  We almost never make any actual phone calls - perhaps a couple a month each, for various official purposes.  We don't have a landline, although our home internet does include some sort of VOIP option that we've not actually set up.

I've been trying to work out what to do when the current contract expires, and I can't immediately see anything that looks anywhere near as cost effective.  Of course, technically the new plans and prepaid options I'm seeing are much 'better' - hugely higher data allowances (currently, we share a data allowance of 250MB each - if one of us runs over, which is rare, the plan allows us to 'borrow' excess data from the other person), much bigger features, etc.  But we don't need any of that, and it seems stupid to pay more for not using it.

At the same time, we're looking at adding a phone for our older son when we change plans (he currently borrows one of ours when he goes out on his own, so he can text us for any odd situations - he's only just gotten old enough to start going places on his own, and he feels more secure if he can check in).  He doesn't currently want to talk to friends, although I'm sure that will change, so for the moment we're looking mainly at texts and calls to us while he's out.

I've looked at the 'major' providers and resellers - everything looks to be at least double what we've been paying for the past couple of years.  There must be more minor providers I'm not stumbling across that offer better deals.  Any suggestions?

steveo

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Re: Australian Mobile Phone Options?
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2013, 04:29:54 AM »
We use TPG and pay 15 per month per sim card. I think it is pretty good value.

moestache

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Re: Australian Mobile Phone Options?
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2013, 04:47:16 AM »
Iinet do $15/month mobile phone plans if you have home internet with them.

Kepler

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Re: Australian Mobile Phone Options?
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2013, 12:57:24 PM »
Thanks folks - I'll check these out.  Weirdly, I had looked at Iinet, since we do have internet through them, and somehow missed that rate - I'll have to look more carefully...  Have you found the services reliable?  (We're in an inner suburb of a major city, so don't have complicated connection needs.)

NumberJohnny5

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Re: Australian Mobile Phone Options?
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2013, 04:40:44 PM »
Who has good coverage where you're at? And how are the data speeds throughout the day?

Wife has Dodo, which uses Optus. $10/mo for 1GB, calls and texts are additional. Don't use more than a couple dollars a month on calls/texts, since the majority of calls/texts are done through an app called Viber. You can call/text to other users with Viber as much as you want at no cost (other than the data it uses). If the data connection is iffy though, you won't have good call quality (but texts still work as long as there is SOME data flowing).

For someone who rarely needs to make a call/text, try Aldi Mobile (uses most, but not all, of the Telstra network). Last I checked $5 got a full year of service. Using an app like Viber on mobile data wouldn't be a good idea, but if you had wifi coverage, it'd work great. So if your son mainly went places with free wifi (whether a friend's house, or McDonald's) he could still use the Viber app to send you a text letting you know where he's at. If he's somewhere with no wifi and really needs to get hold of you, he can make a regular call using the $5 credit.

moestache

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Re: Australian Mobile Phone Options?
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2013, 07:31:49 PM »
Haven't had any issues with iinet in the metro area, don't use much data so the 200mb that comes with the $15 plan is more than enough and so is the $200 in call/text value. I think they use the Optus network, not entirely sure though.