- Which Providers Offer Satellite NBN?
- How Fast is Satellite NBN?
- What is The Cost of Satellite NBN?
The National Broadband Network (NBN) offers three types of connection to Australian consumers: fixed-line connection which uses fibre optic cables; wireless NBN connection; and the NBN satellite connection which uses either a radio tower or satellite dish to establish connection between the network and the subscriber.
According to NBN's 2021 corporate plan, they are looking to further develop fixed wireless and satellite networks to improve connectivity in rural and regional Australia. Since its launch, they are eying an approximate 1.5% of Australians (around 100,000 homes and businesses) connecting to NBN via satellite.
Best Satellite NBN Plan (50GB): SkyMesh
SkyMesh is the top pick among experts and subscribers when it comes to a satellite NBN plan. In particular, its NBN-SB-65-125 Sky Muster™ plan has the approval of many. The bundle costs only $54.95 per month and comes with a monthly data allocation of 190GB.
Although the network does not include a modem in the plan, it does offer free standard installation. Setup, and activation to customers. You are also free to change your plan inclusions however you wish, plus there’s a $10 discount if you bundle it with a home phone.
Runners-up: iiNet and Activ8me
If you prefer other service providers than SkyMesh, iiNet and Activ8me also offer viable satellite NBN plans that are worth considering.
Among these three options, iiNet is arguably the most well-known across the country. For customers interested in applying for satellite NBN plans, the network has the NBN Satellite 150 Standard plan. It costs $44.99 per month and includes 150GB of data.
It’s a Bring Your Own Modem type of subscription and is on a month-to-month basis. Subscribers also become eligible for the $0 installation fee and 24/7 technical support.
Activ8me, meanwhile, has the Sky Muster 150GB Sonic plan that sets you back by $39.95 per month. It’s cheaper than iiNet’s offer for the same 150GB of monthly data, but you are only entitled to 15GB during peak hours and 135GB during off-peak hours, compared to iiNet’s 30GB and 120GB, respectively. Activ8me also includes free standard installation and setup, as well as a no lock-in contract.
Best Satellite NBN Plan (200GB): iiNet
If you need data allocation beyond a monthly 190GB, there are also plans that offer at least 200GB of data to subscribers. Among these, iiNet has the best offer with its NBN Satellite 250 Standard plan. The bundle costs $64.99 a month and offers 250GB of data (60GB during peak hours and 190GB off-peak).
It’s a no-contract term and you can use your own modem for the connection. Subscribers also benefit from iiNet’s 24/7 technical support and $0 installation fee.
Runners-up: SkyMesh and Activ8me
In case your data consumption still goes past the 250GB data allowed by the iiNet plan, you can go with the SkyMesh Sky Muster™ Plus 300GB plan. It offers the same inclusions as iiNet — free installation, setup, and plan changes.
But more than that, you can also enjoy the brand’s Unmetered Content, Unshaped Network Traffic, and above standard Burst Speeds. That is if you are willing to pay $199.95 per month.
If that’s too hefty a price for you, Activ8me has the Sky Muster 250GB Sonic plan for $94.95 per month. The allocation is the same as iiNet’s at 60GB during peak hours and 190GB off-peak. You can also have the free standard installation and setup.
The company is locally owned and operated, with a customer support staff that’s also based in Australia, in case that’s one factor you consider when choosing a service provider.
Best Satellite NBN Plan (300GB): Activ8me Sky Muster Sonic
Priced at $54.95, the Sky Muster Sonic Plan from Activ8me lets you enjoy a 300GB data allowance per month. Get up to 65GB during peak hours, which run between 7am and 1am, and 235GB during off-peak hours from 1am to 7am. For the equipment requirement, you can BYO modem or buy a new WiFi modem/router from the provider for an additional cost of $70. This satellite plan does not require any lock-in contract, giving you freedom to switch anytime you want.
Runners-up: SkyMesh and iiNet
Say your location has a hard time picking up reception from Activ8me, your other options include SkyMesh and iiNet.
SkyMesh has the NBN-SA-20-140 Sky Muster™ plan for $39.95 a month. It comes with 160GB of data (20GB anytime data and 140GB off-peak data), as well as free standard installation, setup, and activation.
If you choose to stick with the network for longer than a month, you can avail of the unlimited plan changes at no extra costs. And if you bundle the satellite plan with your home phone, you can also score $10 off your total monthly bill.
Of course, there is also iiNet’s NBN Satellite 150 Basic plan, which costs $34.99 per month. A no lock-in contract with the network gets you 150GB of monthly data (30GB during peak hours and 120GB off-peak), free standard installation, and 24/7 technical support.
Best Cheap Satellite NBN Plan : Activ8me NBN Sky Muster Satellite Sonic (150GB)
Activ8me is one of the favourite satellite NBN providers in Australia, especially in rural areas where finding a stable internet connection is an everyday struggle. This month, our broadband experts have chosen Activ8me NBN Sky Muster Satellite Sonic as the best satellite NBN plan in terms of affordability and reliability.
Priced at $39.95 a month, the plan is among the cheapest satellite internet you can grab in the market. Some of its features include a download speed between 5Mbps to 25Mbps, upload speed from 1Mbps to 5Mbps, and a total data allowance of 150GB.
You get all these in a 1 month contract that doesn’t require any setup fee.
Want another option? Next in line is SkyMesh NBN SB (235GB). It’s slightly pricier at $49.95 a month but it features a download speed that can go up to 25Mbps and a data allowance of 235GB. The only downside is that you need to sign a 12-month contract with SkyMesh, which means you’re stuck with the plan for a year or so. But hey, SkyMesh offers FREE installation, FREE 10GB anytime data every school holiday, and the services of a friendly Australian technical support team. Not bad at all!
Other Providers Offering Satellite NBN Plans
iiNet, SkyMesh, and Activ8me may be the three most popular service providers in Australia right now, but there are also a few more networks offering satellite NBN plans to consumers. These are IPSTAR, Southern Phone, and Westnet, all of which have decent plans and deals available to those who might be having trouble with the signal strengths and speeds of the three leading telcos.
IPSTAR has the NBN Satellite 40, which includes a monthly data allocation of 100GB (40GB peak data + 60GB off-peak data) for $57 per month. It’s a no lock-in contract that also includes a $0 standard installation.
This company is known for providing internet access to over 100,000 Australian households in the remote parts of the country for 12 years now. Other than the no-contract term it offers to customers, IPSTAR also boasts of its 30-day trial that allows customers to discontinue their subscription if they’re not happy with the service.
Another service provider that’s worthy of your time is Southern Phone, which is known for its Satellite Medium plan. The bundle costs $130 per month for 200GB of monthly data (100GB peak data + 100GB off-peak data). Discounts are offered when you pair the plan with your home phone, although their customer support is only available from 8 am to 8 pm.
Westnet, meanwhile, has the NBN Satellite 250GB Standard plan for $64.99 per month. It comes with 250GB of data on a no-contract term. The network is powered by TPG, which gives you an idea of the quality of service it provides and how reliable the connection can be in your location.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Satellite NBN connection
Is Satellite NBN fast?
Internet speed is always the main concern of subscribers regardless if they have a satellite, wireless, or fixed-line connection. In the case of satellite NBN connections, customers have two options: Sky Muster and Sky Muster Plus plans.
Both types use the same speeds, which may be affected by congestion, especially during peak hours. But on average, off-peak hours between 1 am and 7 am can yield download speeds of 24 Mbit/s and upload speeds of 5 Mbit/s. Of course, there are other factors that may affect your internet speed such as exhaustion of your allowable data.
Can I sign up for a Sky Muster Satellite NBN plan?
If you reside in the regional parts of Australia and are among the 3% (400,000 households) that NBN previously identified to be eligible for a satellite connection, then you will be given an option to sign up for the Sky Muster plan once the NBN rollout is completed in your area.
How long does it take to install and activate my Satellite NBN plan?
This largely depends on your location and the service provider you chose to sign up with. For its part, NBN tries to get a customer connected to the network within 20 days upon application. But if you are located in an isolated area, this could take up to 35 business days. It gets longer for customers whose houses or office spaces are only accessible by sea or water. If this is the case for you, expect your connection to be set up and activated in 90 business days.
Do I need a special type of equipment for the Satellite NBN connection?
Yes. As with other types of NBN connections, you will need NBN-provided equipment to complete your setup. For a satellite NBN plan, a satellite dish will have to be placed on your roof or the side of your house, depending on which area picks up the reception better.
Aside from the satellite dish, your chosen telco will likely provide you with an NBN-ready modem with your plan. Be sure to let your service provider know if you need a new modem so they can give you a more accurate quotation for your monthly bill.