New Optus mobile plans offer more flexibility, less data

Optus has revamped its range of mobile phone plans in Australia but data allowances have been cut

Optus has revamped its range of mobile phone plans in Australia by introducing the option to change plans on a monthly basis if you exceed your data or voice allowance.

The new Optus logo.
The new Optus logo.

Branded as "My Plan" and available from Monday 1 July, the new range of Optus plans will also quote voice inclusions by minutes rather than a traditional dollar value, but data allowances on the $50 and $60 plans have been reduced compared to the company's previous offerings.

Optus' managing director of the customer group, Vicky Brady, says the new My Plans were designed to address the issue of bill shock.

"We think the new plans go to the heart of addressing one of the biggest issues for customers here in Australia at the moment, and that is bill shock," said Brady.

"Customers want us to be honest and fair and they want to make sure there are no hidden costs and charges. Unfortunately as an industry we haven't been great on those two measures and we know that's not acceptable."

Under the new Optus My Plans $60 and above, any excess data usage charges are billed at $10 per gigabyte (GB) up to a maximum of 20GB. On the entry-level $50 My Plan, the data is billed at $5 per 500 megabyte (MB) and $10 per extra 1GB thereafter.

The new Optus My Plan options.
The new Optus My Plan options.

At the start of the following month, Optus will automatically revert the customer to their original plan level.

"You might use 1GB of data more, we will charge you $10 for that extra GB of data and we will move you up to that plan automatically," explained Brady.

"Next month, you go back down to your $60 plan. So, we move you up very simply, and give you a fair price at $10 per gigabyte compared to the excess charges in market today."

Despite the increased flexibility of excess data and voice charges, the new Optus plans have reduced initial data allowances.

The previous Optus $50 plan offered 1GB of data compared to the 500MB allowance on the new plan, while the previous $60 Optus plan offered 1.5GB of data compared to the 1GB limit of the new plan.

When questioned as to why data allowances on the new plans have been reduced, Brady said it was a "trade off" that Optus made.

"We found that customers were most concerned and wanted reassurance about excess data charges, so that's a trade off we made," she explained.

"From research, we've found customers have said 'I don't mind if the inclusion is a little lower at the start, but I don't want to be stung with hundreds of dollars' in charges."

"The change going on in our business is really a renewed focus on our customers and a big part of that has really been listening and understanding what is most important to them."

The lesser data inclusions on the new Optus plans have been branded as "disappointing" by the Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN).

"We're encouraged by Optus leading the industry in ending high breakage fees and simplifying included value offerings," said ACCAN spokesperson Asher Moses. "Measuring included value by minutes is great for consumers as they can now get an idea of how many calls they can get from their monthly allowance without a confusing flagfall."

"However we're disappointed the new plans don't come with more included data given the booming rates of data consumption. Virgin Mobile, for instance, offers 3GB of data for around the same price as the Optus 1GB plans."

"Separately, Optus has also changed prices on its mobile broadband plans recently and reduced included data. According to ACMA, mobile data usage nearly doubled in 2011-12 and this trend is expected to continue."

In addition to the new Optus My Plans, the company will also launch a new range of SIM-only plans with similar flexibility. All plans include standard national SMS and MMS messages.

The new Optus My SIM plan options.
The new Optus My SIM plan options.

Optus has also unveiled a new logo and new typeface as part of a revamped "brand experience". The new branding focuses heavily on the company's 'yes' slogan and uses a more colourful style.

What do you think of the new Optus My Plans? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags smartphonesmobile phonesoptusmobile datamobile phone usagemobile plans

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Ross Catanzariti

Ross Catanzariti

Good Gear Guide
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?