Three Apple iPad plans

Three is renowned for offering generous data packs at budget prices, especially for existing Three customers. Three's value-for-money data plans are some of the most competitive on the market and the recently launched iPad data plans are no exception. For starters, the micro-SIM can be picked up for free from any Three Mobile store or mailed out for 50c.

Three Prepaid iPad Plans

Cost       Data        Bonus Data     Expiry

$15       0.5 GB      1 GB               30 days
$29       2 GB         2 GB               30 days
$49       4 GB         2 GB               30 days
$149     12 GB        n/a                365 days

Post-paid iPad Plans

$15       1 GB         0.5GB + micro-SIM
$29       3GB          1GB + micro-SIM

Expiry

Customers may then choose between prepaid plans lasting for either 30 or 365 days. Unused credit can be rolled over if you recharge before expiry and there is a generous amount of bonus data included in the plans. For example, $15 buys 500MB of data and Three will throw in a bonus 1GB which is perfect for iPad beginners! The most attractive deal is the 12GB plan for only $149.95 which lasts for a whole year.

Speed

According to Three, the quality and speed of a broadband signal is contingent on the type of modem, location and network usage. Three broadband speeds typically range from 600 kbps to 1.5 mbps but can also reach up to 3.6 mbps for 3G roaming.

Coverage

Three broadband zones are generally best for customers living in greater metropolitan areas of capital cities around Australia. You can also access Three's 3G Roaming Zone by accessing parts of the Telstra Network but extra charges will apply.

Benefits and disadvantages

The recent merger between Vodafone and Hutchison Australia now allows Three customers outside Three’s broadband zone to receive extra coverage under the Vodafone 2G zone. There are plenty of freebies for everyone including bonus data, flexible contract terms and 200 MB free data when you activate the free micro-SIM online.  Three offers some cheap plans and the $149 option gives you 12GB that will last a whole year, perfect for the occasional user who doesn't want to worry about recharging every month.

On the post-paid plans, be careful not to go over your data limit as you will be charged excess fees. The cost of additional data in Australia is 2c per MB, charged per KB. Coverage is also a problem for Three. When outside of Three's broadband zones, your iPad will switch to roaming on other providers' networks, and this will cost an additional 50c per MB, charged per KB.