Telstra makes bandwidth most expensive in Australia: CloudFlare

Telstra makes bandwidth most expensive in Australia: CloudFlare

Summary: The global peering company has said that Australia is more expensive to supply services to than anywhere else in the world due to Telstra's dominance.


CloudFlare co-founder and CEO Matthew Prince has said that Australia's transit network pricing for supplying peering services to the country is "out of whack" with the rest of the world, due in large part to Telstra's dominance in the market.

In a blog post today, Prince compared the cost of CloudFlare buying bandwidth across a number of different areas from the United States, Europe, Asia, and Australia.

Prince said that in Australia, CloudFlare peers with almost every internet service provider except for Telstra, which "charges some of the highest transit pricing in the world", at 20 times the benchmark of $100 per Mbps.

(Image: CloudFlare)

The cost of peering in Australia is the most expensive for anywhere in the world, according to Prince, with prices in Australia each month amounting to what the company pays to serve all of Europe, even though Europe has around 33 times the population of Australia.

"If Australians wonder why internet and many other services are more expensive in their country than anywhere else in the world, they need only look to Telstra. What's interesting is that Telstra maintains their high pricing even if only delivering traffic inside the country," Prince said.

"Given that Australia is one large landmass with relatively concentrated population centres, it's difficult to justify the pricing based on anything other than Telstra's market power. In regions like North America, where there is increasing consolidation of networks, Australia's experience with Telstra provides a cautionary tale."

Despite the large cost difference in providing transit to Australia, Prince said that the CloudFlare price of directing traffic to Australia would remain the same.

"We'll continue to work to decrease our transit pricing, and increasing our peering in order to offer the best possible service at the lowest possible price. In the meantime, if you're an ISP who wants to offer better connectivity to the increasing portion of the internet behind CloudFlare's network, we have an open policy and are always happy to peer," he said.

A Telstra spokesperson said CloudFlare's claims were well above what Telstra charges.

"Cloudfare's figures are factually incorrect and are far in excess of Telstra's actual charges. For a customer in Australia wanting gigabyte bandwidths around the benchmark Cloudfare are using, they are overstating our charges by a factor of ten," the spokesperson told ZDNet.

Last week, Vodafone Australia CEO Inaki Berroeta also said that the high cost of transit links to regional locations of Australia made it very expensive for mobile telecommunications companies other than Telstra to expand their network. Vodafone has lobbied NBN Co for over a year to make its fibre links available to mobile telecommunications companies to improve their mobile networks.

Topics: Telcos, Cloud, Telstra, Australia


Armed with a degree in Computer Science and a Masters in Journalism, Josh keeps a close eye on the telecommunications industry, the National Broadband Network, and all the goings on in government IT.

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • Ha.

    Cloudfare = Captain Obvious.
  • Telstra's

    Current commitment to open up services in Asia will without a shred of doubt reveal the rip off they are and ensure they become the laughing stock of Asian how not to do it infamy, get back down to earth Telstra your data plans would shock the rest of the world and completely rule u out of any consideration due to the massive rip off u insist on slugging your customers.
  • Nothing has changed in 40 years...

    Telstra still operates as a monopoly & continues to rip everyone off in Australia. Their charges have always been gold plated because so many think Telstra is THE only provider in the country.

    They are the only provider in many parts of the country because ISP's aren't prepared to foot the cost for the exorbitant prices Telstra charges.
    I hope the ACCC & NBN Co wins it's battle in the NSW court, against Telstra, but the B$200 figure decided by the court, isn't enough to ruffle Telstra's feathers when their huge profit is considered. What will Telstra do, if they do lose the case ?

    Guess what..their customers will pay more to make up for the loss. Reminds me of "The Merchant of Venice" ! except customers will be out of pocket.

    Go for it NBN Co.

    The monopoly needs to be fined way more for the additional court expenses forced on NBN Co. The numbers in the CloudFlare chart will look even worse, if Telstra lose the court case, because the dumb greedy Ar*se holes at Telstra don't care about anything except their share holders. Rip their customers off,.. is their motto!