Updated 3rd Aug 2020
Just how much data does a family use? It’s a tricky question since no two families are exactly alike. Some use it just for email and checking the news. Other use it to work from home, and maybe stream a bit of TV. Sometimes, you need to upload and download massive files — for work-related tasks, personal hobbies, studying, and even just for fun. If you’ve got kids, there’s a good chance they like video games – which can be a huge data sucker. So in reality, it’s really a multi-part question.
What are the best Internet Plans for Families?
In this digital era, internet plans are as wide and varied as the cars on the road. In order to figure out which plan is most suitable for you and your family, you have to ask a few simple questions. How fast, how reliable, how much data? And how much are you willing to spend? Once you know the answer to these two questions, you can examine the most obvious question remaining, how much internet does the average family consume?
How much internet does the Average Family Use?
To get to grips with this question, I polled my married friends who had children, as their internet usage patterns differ greatly from my own. Here’s what I found out about how parents and children both use the internet, versus that of a whole family unit.
How do Parents use the Internet?
Parents use broadband when dealing with a huge range of stuff. Work emails and teleconferences. Organising holidays. Researching kitchen appliances. Listening to podcasts. Gaming. Legitimate, legal file-sharing. Staying up to date on social media. Blogging. Reading other people’s blogs. The list is endless.
How do children use the Internet?
Children use the internet in just as many ways. Socialising, gaming, researching school projects. Uploading vlogs and organising weekend activities.
How does a Family use the Internet?
However, generally speaking, there is one large factor that both adults and children have in common. Families use the internet for entertainment, which means that both kids and parents are downloading and streaming TV shows and movies and music, and even Video Games.
How to pick the best internet plan for families?
Coming back to some of the questions we posed at the beginning of the article, there are five things that every family should consider when picking the right internet plan for their families needs. Speed, latency, reliability, data, and cost.
This is how fast the data moves to or from your modem. This is a big deal when you have a house full of people streaming, downloading and generally trying to get what they want now. A slow connection means people are going to complain.
Latency is the measure of how fast your ISP responds to a request. In a family situation, this matters when you are trying to entertain. No one wants to spend ages waiting for a menu to load – they want to watch Frozen on Netflix. Again. And again.
With a house full of people streaming TV, chatting with friends or downloading work documents, the last thing you need is a dropped connection. As the person in charge of deciding which internet package to go with, you’re the one they look to – or blame – when things go wrong. So it pays to seek out a stable connection from the start. From experience, reliability ranks as following: 1) ADSL 2) Cable 3) NBN.
And a decent amount too! From my survey, the minimum amount used by a family of four was 120 GB a month. At the top end, it was more than ten times this amount! However, most families got by on an average of about 500 – and rarely went over. In most cases, going over your data limit gets your data connection “shaped”. This restricts speeds to 256kbps or less. And trust me – this is not fast enough for the whole family. Indeed, with unlimited plans more and more common, it’s a hard sell to sign up to a plan with a limit.
As recently as the early 2000s there were families paying $50 each month for 1 GB of dial-up internet. Why? Because they didn’t know better. Naturally, you want to provide your family the best broadband deal you can – without breaking the bank. So the price of your broadband package should be kept to a reasonable level for what you’re watching
The Top Five Broadband Deals For Families
As outlined above, we’re looking at fast, stable connections that feature 500GB or more per month. We want decent latency. And we want it at a decent price – meaning bundles are okay! Right now, we’ll leave 4G and Wireless options alone – I want to focus on in-house installations from providers such as Southern Phone and Telstra.
#1 Telstra NBN Entertainment Bundle with Free BINGE & Foxtel Now
Telstra has long been a staple for many families in the telecommunications market. And now when it comes to choosing broadband for the household, Telstra Broadband offers a very tempting bundle. For only $99 per month — with 1 month of Foxtel Now free — you get the new Telstra TV, a home phone connection with included unlimited local, national, and mobile calls and are hooked into the NBN with unlimited data each month on the 50/20 speed tier. Even more ideal for families is Telstra’s free Broadband Protect included on all internet plans. It’s automatically activated for Telstra Home Internet. With this, parents can setup parental controls and Anti-Virus Plus Security. For greater value, all broadband plans also include a free $99 connection fee when you sign up online. Families can also count on Telstra to improve their streaming experience since the telco is Australia’s #1 NBN provider for streaming Netflix. Want more free entertainment? Telstra postpaid consumers also get 3 months of free BINGE streaming!
Last audited 22 September 2020
#2 Southern Phone Turbo Speed Plan
For big families, Southern Phone has you covered with their super-fast connection and huge to unlimited data offerings just like their Turbo NBN plan. It gives you unlimited data on a 50/20 speed tier for high-speed internet use at $75/month with no lock-in contract. It’s only $10 extra if you want to bundle your Turbo broadband plan with a home phone that includes unlimited landline and mobile calls. The only caveat with Southern Phone’s NBN bundles is you’ll locked in to a 24-month contract. Need faster data on flexible terms? Southern Phone’s NBN Max standalone plan offers speed of up to 76Mbps typical evening speed for $95/month, no lock-in contract.
Last audited 09 September 2020
#3 MyRepublic Premium Plan
MyRepublic’s NBN plans are of the good kind. For starters, unlimited data configured on NBN100/20 with typical evening speeds of 83Mbps is only at $89 per month with or with no lock-in contract. This plan is a great fit for a family that needs quality connection and reliable speed, even during peak hours, while keeping the internet bills humbly affordable. As for the contract terms, it’s pretty flexible. It’s either 12 months or month-to-month; though a lengthier contract gets you a WiFi modem for only $1. All of MyRepublic’s internet plans also include a home phone with pay as you go calls. It’s only $10 more if you want to add unlimited calls to Aussie landlines and mobiles. For greater speed, MyRepublic now offers Unlimited Home Superfast 250/25Mbps plans at $109/month.
Last audited 09 September 2020
#4 activ8me Sky Muster
For families in regional and remote areas, activ8me offers a range of satellite NBN reasonably priced to meet your family’s budget. Services start from $34.95/month for 150GB data and up to $89.95/month for 250GB running on 12/1Mbps speed. For larger households, the Sky Muster Plus plans can deliver with upgraded speed of 25/5Mbps from $59.95/month. For NBN broadband plans, activ8me has them from only $59.95/month and that already runs on the NBN50 tier with typical evening speeds of up to 41.92Mbps.
Last audited 07 September 2020
#5 iPrimus Unlimited nbn100 Plan
Broadband for the entire family means it has to be unlimited and fast. iPrimus’ nbn100 plan with average evening speed of 82Mbps at $90 per month, with or with no lock-in contract, is one of the excellent options available. For one, it’s cheaper than most and super flexible, too. You can save on upfront costs amounting to $99 if you sign up for 12 months or enjoy total freedom with a month-to-month plan. For added value, a landline connection with pay as you go calls is included, plus you can bundle entertainment with Fetch TV from only $10/month. All inclusions and options available are definitely something every family needs.
Last audited 15 September 2020
What is the best Broadband Plan for Families?