Optus has become the first telco in Australia to offer unlimited data for its mobile customers with the release of its new “Unleashed” plans. But there’s a catch.
An unlimited plan is $60 per month on a 12-month contract with users able to add a second and third SIM card to that plan for $50 and $40 per month respectively.
But what’s the catch?
Users streaming music and video and tethering their mobile device will be speed limited at 1.5Mbps.
Also, during congestion periods, heavy unlimited data customers may be “de-prioritised” and experience even slower speeds.
From these conditions, it appears Optus is attempting to safeguard itself from data hungry customers who want to take advantage of the system.
So anyone contemplating using their unlimited Optus plan in place of their home broadband connection will see their speeds become so slow they will struggle to stream music or video.
“Customers shouldn’t be caught up in the hype of unlimited mobile plans,” says Finder’s Alex Kidman.
“In this case Optus has a 50GB plan for $60 which comes with no specific limitations. So, unless you’re going to need more than 50GB, it’s not a great deal.
“The introduction of unlimited mobile data is often thought of as a major threat to the NBN, but with such limiting speeds this simply won’t be the case. If Aussies want to stream at a high quality, they will still need their fixed Internet connection.”
Curiously, Optus offered this unlimited plan to customers in March but withdrew it suddenly the next day.
Optus is marketing the new plans by saying “get unlimited mobile data for the family” with a disclaimer that it was only available for eligible Optus customers only.
Eligibility appears to be if you are an existing Optus customer.