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Wrong ADSL plan can cost you your shirt: Telsyte

Australian small businesses are the big winners from the recent broadband price war, with the median price of a small-to-medium business ADSL plan falling by more than 17 percent from February to April, a new report claims.However, the median price of a residential ADSL plan has slid by less than 1 percent over the same period, the report, prepared by consultancy Telsyte, claims.
Written by ZDNET Editors, Contributor on
Australian small businesses are the big winners from the recent broadband price war, with the median price of a small-to-medium business ADSL plan falling by more than 17 percent from February to April, a new report claims.

However, the median price of a residential ADSL plan has slid by less than 1 percent over the same period, the report, prepared by consultancy Telsyte, claims.

Telsyte managing director, Shara Evans, said: "ADSL is a pricing minefield.

"The advertising for residential broadband products makes them look cheap, but you can really lose your shirt by rushing to sign onto a plan with low useage allowances," she said.

"On average, the median price of an SME ADSL plan has decreased by 17.22 percent, while the median price of a residential ADSL plan has decreased by 0.79 percent.

Telsyte said while the base price for a 256Kbps/64Kbps residential service started at AU$19.95 including GST, "once you add a typical 500MB of monthly usage, the lowest monthly cost was AU$29.95 including GST, with the average price being AU$73.30 including GST per month.

"For exactly the same service and usage, the highest cost plan (base price, plus excess usage fees) in the market was AU$519.95 including GST per month.

"For 256 Kbps/64 Kbps residential services including 1000MB of monthly usage, in April 2004 the lowest monthly cost was AU$29.95 including GST, with the average price being AU$108.27 including GST per month.

"For exactly the same service and usage, the highest cost plan (base price, plus excess usage fees) in the market was a staggering AU$1,014.95 including GST per month".

Evans said usage-based ADSL plans had a real "sting in the tail," with the monthly usage quotas in many typical plans exhausted by the downloading of a few security patches and checking of e-mails.

"Unless you have selected a 'slow motion' unlimited plan, expect to pay an extra AU$50 to AU$100 of usage per month," she said.

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