I'm looking into organising an internet service for my daughters who live in Brisbane.
There are 3 girls sharing the house and they would all need to be able to access the internet.They are uni students so would need a medium to heavy internet usage. As it is a rental house, they do not have a landline, they all have mobile phones but with different companies. What is the best type of internet service for them to use? Thanks, Karen.
Basically for the kind of usage you're describing – three girls on multiple devices, all medium to heavy users of the internet – you're going to need either ADSL2+ or cable. A cable connection is a broadband connection carried on a fibre-optic cable designed to transmit the internet, meaning that it's very, very fast. However, cable broadband is also more expensive than ADSL2+, and is not available in as many areas. Only Optus and Telstra BigPond offer cable in Australia; out of the two of them, Optus will be your cheaper option.
Click here for the best cable plans, or call Optus on 1300 137 897.
Probably, though, a better option for you is just to get an ADSL2+ plan. The speed of ADSL2+ depends upon your distance from the telephone exchange and the quality of your copper line, but most of the time it's more than adequate for most customers, and you can get some great, inexpensive plans for ADSL2+ depending upon which providers are available in your area. If your daughters live in a major city like Brisbane, chances are that you'll be able to take advantage of some of the current competition going on in the broadband landscape. You'll want to make sure, though, that you get a WiFi modem, whether from your provider or from an electronics store, so that the internet signal is broadcast through your house and the girls can use it on multiple devices in multiple rooms.
Click here for the best ADSL2+ Home WiFi plans.
The main point we need to correct here is what you mean by the idea that because it's a rental house, they don't have a landline. Do you mean that there are no telephone jacks in the wall and the copper line used to connect a home phone hasn't been connected at all? If so, you may be in a spot of trouble. If there is no copper line coming into the property, ADSL2+ will not be able to connect. You should call the landlord to find out whether or not there is a copper line, and if there's not, try and talk the landlord into connecting one, as otherwise there will be a $299 fee to do so yourself.
More likely, though, you just mean that the landline phone is not currently active. That's not a huge deal, as most providers will connect an inactive landline as part of the set-up fee, with no additional charges. You might think that it's cheaper to get something called Naked Broadband, aka broadband without the home phone, if the girls don't require the use of a landline telephone, but this is a common misconception about something called "line rental". In fact, the copper line does not carry just your home phone, but your home phone and ADSL2+ connection, meaning that if you have an ADSL2+ connection, you will be paying line rental. Rather than paying a premium price for Naked ADSL2+ and all the added connection fees, just get a cheap home phone and internet bundle, and then simply don't plug a phone in – then there's no way you can rack up any charges.
One last thing about the type of plan you should be looking for: with three relatively frequent users using your connection, probably the best thing to do is simply get an unlimited plan, removing the need to worry about whether or not you'll go over your monthly quota. Most providers don't charge you for going over your monthly data limit on an ADSL2+ connection, but they will slow your internet down for the rest of the month, which can be very frustrating, particularly when you have uni students trying to work on it.
Both Dodo and TPG offer unlimited ADSL2+ connections for as little as $59.99 per month. You should call both of them and see what kind of plans and deals they can offer you. Out of the two, Dodo is more likely to give you some free goodies, with free connection and a free modem on a 24 month contract, but TPG is more flexible with their contract length (i.e. six months) and has slightly better customer service. It's really up to you to see what sort of special offering you prefer more when choosing your plan, but do call them both to see whether or not one seems to suit you better.
TPG: 1300 106 571
Dodo: 1300 136 793
I hope this helps, Karen! If you have any further questions, please feel free to call us on 1300 106 571.