A new survey by consumer advocacy group Choice shows that Australians pay $1,854 more a year for broadband compared to Australians in other OECD countries, and that’s despite the fact that the country also has the lowest broadband speeds.
Choice says Australians pay an average of $10.50 per month for average internet service, compared to $24.50 in New Zealand and $46.70 in the UK.
Choice also says Australians spend an average $17.80 a month on data caps, compared with $36.20 in the US, and $59.50 of the $69.40 average paid in the United States.
In the US data caps can be up to 100GB, whereas in Australia they’re capped at 50GB.
Choice surveyed 1,700 people in Australia between January and February 2017 and found that nearly two-thirds of respondents believed internet service should cost $20 or less, compared in the other OECD nations.
Choice’s CEO, Robyn O’Brien, said Australians were being overcharged by $20.
Choice president and CEO Paul Whitehurst said that while internet speeds were faster in Australia than in the rest of the world, Australians were still paying an unreasonable price.
“In other OECD economies, where people can buy a mobile broadband or an NBN service, the prices are higher, the services are more robust and there are a lot more choices,” Mr Whitehurst told ABC Radio Melbourne.
“But in Australia the government is saying, ‘Well, you need a broadband connection.’
And the cost is just ridiculous.”
Choice says Australian consumers spend $16.60 a month for the average data cap in the country, compared at $10 a month in New York, and more than $25 a month to access broadband internet.
Choice is also warning that Australian consumers should consider purchasing a fibre broadband service.
“The cost of a fibre network is far less than the cost of an ADSL network,” Mr O’Connor said.
“Fibre is an option and Australians are often able to choose that option.”