These days, we’re spoilt for choice when it comes to our choice of ISP. And with the arrival of the NBN – which gives everyone the ability to pick and choose from a full range of internet providers – there’s a huge array of options to sort through. On the one hand, you want value, since nobody’s looking to pay more than they can afford for broadband. On the other hand, you want a quality service that won’t slow to a crawl right when you need it the most. Thankfully, both Dodo and iPrimus have your back.
Both providers have been around for a good long while now. iPrimus for 21 years, Dodo for 18. But what might surprise you is the fact that, in 2016, they became a part of the same company. Communications giant Vocus, which runs a massive fibre network used by businesses Australia-wide, now owns both consumer ISPs. That makes Dodo and iPrimus a part of one of the four largest internet providers in Australia. And that’s good news for customers, since it means more direct access to a very, very fast backbone network.
Despite being two parts of the same parent company, both Dodo and iPrimus operate as separate businesses (though they do share some support resources). Dodo has dropped a lot of the value-added offers they used to be known for, though – no more “free” tablet PCs or other gadgets – and has streamlined their offerings using low price as the main marketing message. The famous Dodo bird, though, lives on! Dodo has also branched out into power, gas and even insurance, but we’ll stick to the broadband offerings here.
iPrimus, meanwhile, has changed little since the merger – the big difference for customers was that the monthly price actually went down.
On the ADSL side of things, Dodo has trimmed their available options, which used to include all kinds of packages, down to just two. A 101GB plan for $20 per month and an unlimited plan for $30 a month. Yes, the unlimited-data plan is only an extra ten bucks a month more than a very limited 101GB offering. If you do anything more than just casual web browsing and email, head straight for the unlimited option.
Both plans on the minimum 12-month contract come with a Wi-Fi modem at no charge and there’s no setup fee. Month-to-month plans, on the other hand, have $120 upfront costs that cover the setup fee and the modem.
For NBN, Dodo offers three unlimited data plans. No surprises for guessing what we’d recommend here, with unlimited the only viable option for regular internet users. The unlimited plans clock in at $65, $70 and $85 with speeds at NBN25, NBN50 and NBN100 (where available) respectively. With NBN, home phone line rental is included, but calls are billed.
Last audited 30 November 2020
Following a trend established by its sibling, iPrimus also has three main NBN plans, two of which are unlimited-data while the other is fairly limiting. You can have 250GB from $65/month, unlimited at NBN50 for $75 per month, or unlimited at the NBN100 speed for $90/month. You can also build a custom plan for yourself using any combination of speed, data limit and optional 12-month contract. That makes it much more flexible than Dodo, though ultimately the three default options are going to be the most popular choices.
Last audited 30 November 2020
Both Dodo and iPrimus offer plans including the Fetch TV box and service, both keeping it simple by offering Fetch only with their unlimited plans on on a 12-month contract. Fetch adds an extra $10/month to the cost for the Fetch Mini with iPrimus, or $35/month for the far more capable Fetch Mighty on Dodo (which we’d highly recommend you choose). You can then opt for one channel pack, with categories covering Kids, Vibe (music and lifestyle), Variety (drama) and Knowledge (docos). You also get 30 free pre-selected rental movies each month to give you plenty to watch.
Really, the customer’s the winner here, with some very well-priced options on both sides, depending on your needs. You can cut your monthly data allowance and save money. Or, you can get unlimited data with either and add Fetch TV, with the latter costing more if you want the more feature-packed TV device to go with your shiny new broadband connection.
Both are backed up by one of Australia’s most reliable top-tier networks, which means great connections for gamers, fast reliable streaming and all the essentials. Whichever you choose, you can’t go wrong.
What people are asking about iPrimus
Yes, but not directly. Both iPrimus and Dodo were owned by a company called M2 Group until 2016, when that company was merged into the giant Vocus Group, which now operates both providers. Each is run as a separate company with different plans and pricing, but sharing much of the same network.
No – and in fact, iPrimus was the first internet provider in Australia to reduce their reliance on Telstra during the ADSL days, by putting their own equipment into phone exchanges to connect customers directly to iPrimus.
All you need to do is pick up your handset and dial your VoIP number (your home phone number) including the area code, then enter your PIN and press the # key. If accessing voicemail from another phone, dial your VoIP number and press the * key when it answers, then enter your PIN and press the # key.
The easiest way to get in touch with iPrimus for everything from customer enquiries to technical support is to call them on 13 17 89. Customer service is available from 9am to 6pm Monday to Friday; sales enquiries from 8am to 10pm weekdays and 9am to 9pm on weekends, and technical support is available from 8am to 11pm, seven days a week.
If you’ve decided to switch to another provider and need to cancel your account, call 1300 85 85 85 and a iPrimus customer service person will get the cancellation sorted out for you. Keep in mind that if you’re still under contract, an early termination fee may apply.
There’s actually several different models of modem used by iPrimus, with a couple of NetComm models most common today, but Huawei models having been used in the past. If you’re not familiar with changing the settings on a modem, it’s recommended you give tech support a call on 13 17 89, and they’ll be able to walk you through the right steps based on the type of iPrimus modem you have.
With the NBN providing the connectivity for all ISPs, it’s rare for there to be any sort of outage that affects just one particular ISP – but it can and does happen. If your iPrimus connection isn’t working, the first thing to try is to turn off your modem, turn it back on again and wait 60 seconds or so. If you’re still not able to connect, get in touch with tech support on 13 17 89 and they’ll be able to check to see if there’s a fault.
One of the first communications companies to arrive in Australia and set up as an alternative to the incumbent Telstra for broadband services, iPrimus has been providing broadband internet in Australia since 1999. They’re now a part of the Vocus Group, a key provider of fast network connections in Australia and around the world, and make extensive use of their network via the NBN.
If you’re only planning on using your iPrimus broadband for light tasks like browsing the web, doing online banking, catching up with friends’ videos and photos and so on, then you should find iPrimus’ 250GB plan more than enough. However if you’re someone that watches a lot of Netflix, Stan, BINGE or other streaming services, we’d highly recommend you go for one of the unlimited plans – the peace of mind is worth the small extra cost.
The “NBN numbers” you see in connection to plans reflect the download speed that you can expect in perfect conditions. NBN25 is about the speed of the best ADSL connection, but if you’re streaming video or in a household with multiple people, NBN50 will help make sure everyone is able to use the internet without buffering. NBN100 is available only on some connections and is for those who want the fastest downloads possible (such as for video game updates).
If you sign up to a 12-month contract plan, iPrimus will supply you the right modem for your NBN connection type. You can use your own if you have one (as long as it’s not locked to another internet provider) but for the best results, there’s every reason to use the one supplied by iPrimus.
Yes, you can sign up without a contract – but you’ll have to pay $99 up front for the connection and your modem – still a very reasonable price compared to buying a modem yourself.
No – you’ll need to return it if and when you cancel either your Fetch TV service or your iPrimus connection. You can optionally buy a Fetch TV box outright from major electronics retailers, and then use it with your iPrimus unlimited-data service.