Fam­i­lies fed up with broad­band dropouts

Western Times - - MONEY SAVER - SO­PHIE ELSWORTH

IN­TER­NET dropouts and slow speeds are a mas­sive source of frus­tra­tion for Aus­tralians surf­ing the web. Al­most three-quar­ters of the Na­tional Broad­band Net­work is built, with more than four mil­lion homes and busi­nesses con­nected. How­ever, there have been many re­ports of house­hold hic­cups over speed and con­nec­tions. Fa­ther-of-two Paul Ril­stone has fixed broad­band and is fed up. “The qual­ity is one of our big­gest bug­bears, when the kids come home from school and they put Net­flix on it’s ter­ri­ble qual­ity,” he said. “It’s frus­trat­ing, we are a fam­ily that is out quite a lot so we have to use mo­bile data and we are not fully us­ing the broad­band ser­vices we have at home.” Each month they pay $100 for 250GB home broad­band and they have sev­eral mo­bile plans in­clud­ing a $75 3GB plan and a $10 1GB plan. The fam­ily is of­ten stung by ex­cess data charges and has con­sid­ered switch­ing to wire­less broad­band, which is de­liv­ered over the 4G net­work in­stead of a fixed line such as NBN or ADSL. Telco provider OVO’s chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer, Matt Jones, said in­creas­ing in­ter­net frus­tra­tions of­ten re­sulted in Aus­tralians switch­ing off home in­ter­net and re­ly­ing on their phone’s in­ter­net in­stead. “You of­ten find it’s faster to dis­con­nect from your home wi-fi and just use your 4G con­nec­tion,” he said. “Speeds on mo­bile range from 50 to 100 mbps and the speeds on ADSL are of­ten around 20 to 30 mbps.” Mr Jones said wire­less broad­band deals had be­come cheaper – OVO’s big­gest plan is 250GB per month for $99. “The aver­age house­hold uses about 210GB per month,” he said. And with 5G just around the cor­ner – the first ser­vices are ex­pected to go live next year – Aus­tralians should ex­pect to re­ceive faster wire­less in­ter­net ser­vices and more re­li­able video stream­ing. Telco com­par­i­son web­site WhistleOut’s spokesman, Joseph Han­lon, said peo­ple should weigh up their op­tions be­fore switch­ing or sign­ing up to home data plans.

Paul Ril­stone, wife Katie and chil­dren Lowen, 10, and Flynn, 8. Pic­ture: Tim Pas­coe DATA DEVOURERS:

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