Vodafone Australia launches 4G mobile broadband

Vodafone Australia launches 4G mobile broadband

Summary: Vodafone has gone all in with its 4G mobile broadband, launching a Cat 4 dongle and a pocket Wi-Fi device.

TOPICS: Telcos

Six months after opening up its 4G network to the public for smartphones and tablets, Vodafone has begun offering mobile broadband plans on the network with two Category 4 mobile broadband devices.

(Image: Vodafone)

Thanks to Vodafone's 20MHz of 1800MHz 4G spectrum, the dongle and Wi-Fi hotspots on sale today offer a theoretical maximum speed of 150Mbps in coverage areas across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, and Adelaide.

The devices are only available on 24-month contracts, with no plans for prepaid offerings at this stage. Monthly device repayments vary between AU$3 per month and AU$7 per month, depending on the plan.

Data limit 4G dongle 4G Wi-Fi hotspot
2.5GB AU$25 per month AU$27 per month
4GB AU$33 per month AU$35 per month
8GB AU$48 per month AU$50 per month

Customers can also choose to sign up on a month-to-month contract by paying for the devices upfront for AU$119 for the dongle, or AU$169 for the Wi-Fi hotspot.

The lower price point for the plans is cheaper than that on offer from Telstra. Telstra's 24-month, post-paid 4G plans start at AU$30 per month for 1GB with the dongle, or AU$31 per month for the Wi-Fi hotspot.

The 8GB service on Telstra will set customers back AU$55 or AU$56 per month for the dongle or Wi-Fi hotspot, respectively.

As of the end of 2013, Telstra boasted that its 4G network reached out to 85 percent of the population.

Optus' mobile broadband plans start at AU$25 per month for 1GB with a dongle, or AU$27 per month for the Wi-Fi hotspot. For 7GB of data, this will cost customers AU$50 or AU$52 per month, respectively.

Optus reseller Virgin, however, offers a massive 13GB per month on an AU$60 per month plan, including a Wi-Fi hotspot on a 12-month contract.

Vodafone's general manager of devices Katie Turkal said the company's offering today is targeted at students, and those living in shared accommodation who typically avoid contracts.

"We are seeing a strong demand for mobile broadband products, especially from people who don't want a permanent fixed-broadband connection, students, those living in share accommodation and people who simply don't want to be locked into a contract," she said in a statement.

As part of the announcement, Vodafone said it would provide a 15 percent discount for existing customers who buy one of the 4G devices before April 2.

Topic: Telcos


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.

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  • Wireless broadband, and the winner is?

    None of the above are winners, would have embarrassed Vodafone if you had mentioned Vivid Wireless who have had 4G since 2010. Plus their charges for hotspot are cheaper than anyone else. For $60 Vivid Wireless gives you a real massive 20GB for a hotspot! We use unlimited for $79 and $0 upfront for a 12 month contract.

    Give me the $500 for an article that would really tell people what is out there!
  • Caution

    vividwireless is now owned by Optus. Their coverage is even less than Vodafone's. I'd be surprised if they stick around for much longer, given Optus wants to use its spectrum for Optus' own 4G networks.
    Josh Taylor
  • Landline or Mobile?

    Now that Abbott & Turnbull have "Destroyed the NBN" the Mobile Wireless option is starting to look far more attractive to us than in the past as affordable data limits slowly creep up.
    We're presently paying $75/mth on an erratic landline that struggles to deliver a 0.02Mbps service or audible voice while our "Faster & Cheaper 25Mbbs for all by 2016" has evaporated into non- core oblivion.