Internet Services

Choosing the right plan

A generic guide to assist you in choosing the correct Internet service.

Two aspect to consider

When choosing an Internet service, there are two aspects to determine, the type of service (speed and technology) and the usage (data allocation). Both aspects contribute to the suitability and cost of your service each month.


Type of Service

Internet Access is possible in many forms; ADSL, NBN (FTTP, FTTN, FTC, WIFI), Ethernet and many others.

Factors to consider include:

  • Price - What are the initial and recurring costs?
  • Speed - How many users are using the service at once?
  • Contention - How many other users are sharing the bandwidth?
  • Redundancy - Is it protected from failure?
  • Service Level Agreement - What is the recovery time after a fault?
  • Availability - Is it available where you need it?


Usage

Data usage refers to the information passed to and from your network and the Internet. It occurs when you download an email or ping a remote site, stream a video or run a speed test. It is not restricted to when you "save a file to your hard disk".

Everytime you load a webpage, watch a funny kitten on YouTube or chat in your favorite IM, you are transfering data. Without exception, while your service is connected, it is transferring (uploading and downloading) data.

Your selected data plan will determine how much you are charged and what happens if you exceed the plans allowance. Choosing the right plan is key to knowing and controlling your costs.

Predicting your use can be difficult. Whenever you consider a data plan, try to obtain an accurate indication of what is "normal" for you. Without any change in circumstance, the best indicator will be what you have used in recent months. If you can't obtain this, your circumstances have changed or this is simply your first time, use this table for some of the more common activities:

Activity Estimated usage per hour
Basic Web Browsing – Emails, Google Search, News and Weather. 10 – 50 MB
Streaming Audio Content – Spotify, iTunes, Google Play. Low quality: 25MB – 50MB
Medium quality: 50MB – 100MB
High quality: 100MB – 150MB
Streaming Video Content – Netflix, Stan, YouTube, Foxtel. Low definition: 300MB
Standard definition: 700MB
High Definition: 3GB
UHD (4K) quality: 7GB

It’s worth noting that many streaming services, may default to an "auto" setting for video quality, which will favour higher quality (to ensure better-looking playback) over lower data usage.

Gaming – Online, PlayStation, Xbox 100MB – 1GB depending on game play.

Check out your Game’s Official Help page for more information about data consumption.

Telephony - SIP Voice Service Per call (G.711) - 45MB
File Sharing - Bit torrent, P2P sharing

This is dependant on the files transferred but the sharing nature of these protocols can easily see many times the transferred file size used in uploads to other users.

Use caution with these applications.

Network Overhead

Up to 10% of your data transfer.


Controlling your usage

In most cases, there is little you can change to significantly reduce your usage without lowering your enjoyment too. For instance, watching a 4K video uses a lot of data. You can really only reduce the amount of data transferred by watching at a lower quality (HD or SD).

Make use of unmetered periods

We offer unmetered data use from 7pm to 7am everyday. If you are downloading files, caching television to watch later or performing updates, schedule the activity in those hours.

Reduce waste

  • Turn off devices (TV, streaming radio and game console) if they are not being used.
  • Don't leave browsers open on pages that refresh either content or advertising.
      Some examples are:
    • Weather sites
    • Search engines
    • News portals
  • Be cautious of heavy sites - eBay, YouTube, Facebook, etc. all have very heavy content.
  • Ensure your computer is free of viruses and malware.


Still unsure?

If you have specific applications or are still unsure of what you should expect, please contact us to discuss your requirements.



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