Telstra has already announced plans to be one of the first Aussie providers to adopt the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's new industry guidelines for NBN sellers, meaning that the telco is working to improve and update the information it gives to customers regarding expected NBN speeds. But Telstra is now offering restitution to disappointed customers on existing NBN plans.
Slow NBN solutions
Telstra will begin providing refunds to a 'small sub-set' of NBN customers who have experienced unexpectedly slow speeds on their Telstra-supplied FTTN or FTTB plan. The telco has claimed that less than 5% of its NBN users qualify for a refund, but this still amounts to more than 42,000 customers according to the ACCC.
Breaking down that 42,000, the ACCC has outlined the following speed-specific grievances from Telstra customers:
- 26,497 FTTN users on the 100/40 Mbps plan could not receive this speed, with 9,606 users unable to achieve 50/20 Mbps speeds
- 6,352 FTTN users on the 50/20Mbps plan could not receive this speed
- 9,342 FTTN users on the 25/5Mbps plan could not receive this speed
Affected users will be contacted directly by Telstra, and will also be given the option to change their speed tier or cancel their contract completely without incurring termination fees.
In addition to offering affected users refunds and penalty-free contract cancellation, Telstra will also now re-assess new connections within four weeks of activation to ensure each customer is attaining advertised speeds; if speeds are disappointing, customers will be notified and the above solutions provided.
The ACCC will monitor Telstra's steps to compensate disappointed customers, and has confirmed that the telco initially disclosed the speed problems to the Commission prior to the ACCC's investigation. As we've previously reported, Telstra has already commenced providing more accurate speed estimates to current and prospective customers in accordance with ACCC guidance.
Speed tiers and usage info
As well as the standard maximum downloads and uploads in megabits-per-second, you'll now be able to see typical speeds for peak usage periods (from 7pm to 11pm), as per the ACCC's recommendations. Minimum speeds during peak hours will obviously be slower than those in off-peak periods, and speeds will vary between households; expected speeds are available below.
|Speed tier||Typical minimum speeds (peak hours)||Typical minimum speeds (off-peak hours)|
|Basic Evening Speed||7Mbps (downloads)||11Mbps (downloads)|
|Standard Evening Speed||15Mbps (downloads) and 4Mbps (uploads)||22Mbps (downloads) and 4Mbps (uploads)|
|Standard Plus Evening Speed||30Mbps (downloads) and 15Mbps (uploads)||45Mbps (downloads) and 15Mbps (uploads)|
|Premium Evening Speed||60Mbps (downloads) and 24Mbps (uploads)
||90Mbps (downloads) and 30Mbps (uploads)
Telstra's updated speed tiers can be divided into Basic, Standard, Standard Plus and Premium, as proposed by the ACCC in August. Basic is suitable for small, low-use households, Standard speed covers all your basic browsing needs (plus streaming video), and Standard Plus is great for multi-user homes with a love of HD movies and TV.
If you want best-of-the-best speeds, Premium is ideal for heavy users with serious downloading and streaming needs (such as 4K video), or households where multiple users are streaming at once. It's also an good option for users who work or study from home and don't want to compromise on speed, although be prepared to pay an additional $30 per month to upgrade.
Telstra's NBN plans start at $100 per month for 100GB of data at Standard Evening speeds. While current data allowances only go up to 3000GB per month, Telstra has just announced it will soon offer unlimited data on selected ADSL, NBN and cable plans.
To start comparing all Telstra NBN options, click below.