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TPG Telecom fleeing 100Mbps NBN tier

End of NBN promotion for 100Mbps Home Fast tier sees telco shift users around.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor
Image: ACCC

When it comes to users jumping between NBN plans in the quarter to the end of March, there is one telco that stands above all others, TPG Telecom.

For the three-month period, the telco reported 468,000 fewer connections on 100Mbps speed plans, but it saw an extra 335,000 line move onto 250Mbps, and 113,000 extra 50Mbps plans.

The end result meant instead of being TPG's most popular tier in December, the 215,000 users on the 100Mbps now trail behind the 663,000 50Mbps connections, 426,000 on 12Mbps, 336,000 on 250Mbps, and 311,000 on 25Mbps plans.

At the same time, the number of TPG users on the 500-100Mbps Home Ultrafast shot up in the quarter from 352 to almost 63,000 users.

TPG said the movement is a result of it purchasing more wholesale 250Mbps and 1Gbps access, and gifting speed increases to users on 50Mbps and 100Mbps plans.

Across all NBN retailers, 100Mbps plans had 464,000 fewer users, as Telstra was the only other major retailer to see a drop of 11,500 plans while Optus connected almost 8,800 premises to 100Mbps, Aussie Broadband recorded 7,000 extra users, and Vocus raised its 100Mbps connection number by 5,400.

On the 250Mbps tier, Optus connected an extra 89,000 users, Telstra saw an extra 45,000 connections, and in combination with TPG's 335,000 number, the total rose by 477,000 across the quarter.

The only other major telco to cross the four-figure threshold for Home Ultrafast plans was Aussie Broadband, which signed up an extra 2,300 users on that tier. The total across all retailers sat just short of 73,000 connections.

Overall, the 50Mbps tier saw an extra 71,000 users, 25Mbps recorded 40,000 new connections, while the number of 12Mbps users dropped by 32,000.

ACCC commissioner Anna Brakey pinned the customer shift on NBN ending its 100Mbps promotion.

"New incentives offered by NBN Co have enabled retailers to allow consumers to trial or shift to higher speed services, particularly services with very high speeds of 250Mbps or above," Brakey said.

"Before moving to higher speed services, the ACCC recommends that consumers consider the value of new promotions, how long they run for, and how they align with their particular needs.

"Many consumers will continue to be adequately served running multiple devices on plans with speeds of 50Mbps or below."

Looking at the customer shifts by connection technology, an aggregate 146,000 full fibre customers left the 50Mbps tier and 67,000 moved from 100Mbps plans, as a total of 189,000 additions were made to 250Mbps plans, and 55,000 jumped on Home Ultafast plans.

For fibre to the node, 233,000 customers left the 100Mbps tier, and the 50Mbps tier recorded 268,000 additions.

A similar pattern was seen in fibre to the curb, with 106,000 fewer 100Mbps connections recorded against 158,000 extra 50Mbps connections.

For hybrid fibre-coaxial, the 50Mbps tier saw 240,000 connections drop off, and 289,000 jump onto 250Mbps.

On satellite, there was no good news for NBN as 2,400 connections left the network.

Updated at 9:20am AEST, 24 May 2021: Added TPG comment and adjusted headline to reflect it is the telco, not customers, who are initiating the shift.

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