How the NBN hits Aussie hip pockets
Whether you like it or not the NBN is coming your way if it hasn't already. How can you avoid getting stung by hefty charges?
I received a notification saying it was coming to my home this month and within days my mailbox started to fill with pesky telcos trying to sign me up.
And it's no wonder many of us are reluctant to get it - the nation's competition watchdog, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, recently found more than one million Australians are paying more each month for their broadband using the NBN compared to their old ADSL connections.
In many cases, this equates to at least $10 a month more - yet another hit to consumers' hip pockets.
Paying more for the internet is a burden many cash-strapped Aussies don't need. What is also irritating is telcos bombarding me with junk mail.
One company even addressed me as "the internet lover", and tried to lure me in to sign up to their deals before the NBN had even been installed.
You'd be mad to sign up to any deal without knowing what platter of deals is on offer first.
We've heard so many Aussies whine about the $51 billion NBN. In the Telecommunication Industry Ombudsman's latest report for the six months to December, it found almost 10,000 complaints were recorded about the service quality of the NBN.
This fell from 4.1 complaints per 1000 homes to 2.1 complaints from the corresponding 2017 period.
Latest figures show that more than 5.2 million households are connected to the NBN and it is available to 9.2 million premises across Australia.
The rollout is expected to be complete by June 2020.
To be honest, surely nothing can be worse than my ADSL+2 connection at home - in inner suburban Melbourne.
It's sometimes so slow and fickle I can't even use it, and instead I switch off my wi-fi and go back to use the data on my phone.
It's a joke really.
And as for signing up to an NBN deal before the service arrives at my home, I won't be in a rush to do that anytime soon.
Households have about 18 months to sign up to the NBN once it's available at their premises, so there's no need to rush.
Most deals start at about $60 per month, but that depends on the speed and the amount of data you want.
The telco space is as competitive than ever and providers are desperate to sign up new customers, so take your time.
Prices on these plans may fall lower so you don't want to get trapped on any overpriced deals.
As with any consumer product, make sure you research what deals are available and remember that loyalty often doesn't pay off.
Also understand the speed you are signing up to because there's a handful of options on offer.
These range from 12 megabits per second up to 100Mbps, and the higher the speed the more expensive the connection.