- Broadband FAQs & Glossary
- Internet Options
- Internet Plans
- Internet Providers
- Getting connected to the NBN
- Choosing the right NBN plan
- The benefits of the NBN
- The different technologies of the NBN
- Internet Speeds
1. What is broadband?
The term ‘broadband’ refers to a type of internet connection that can receive and send a large amount of data in a very short period of time. The majority of internet connections currently available from Australian internet service providers are classified as ‘broadband’ connections.
2. What are the advantages of broadband v dial up?
Generally, broadband connections are capable of receiving and sending data a lot faster than the superseded ‘dial-up’ connection. Viewing websites and downloading data over a dial-up connection can be very slow.
3. How fast is broadband?
While there are many different opinions on what data transfer rates should be labelled as ‘broadband’, the generally accepted minimum speed of a broadband internet connection is approximately 256 kbit/s.
Putting technical jargon to one side, a broadband connection, by definition, should enable the end-user to download / view internet content (websites, pictures, videos and music) without lengthy delay.
4. What types of broadband are there?
There are several different ‘delivery methods’ of broadband internet. Some involve a wire or cable being directly connected to the home or computer, whereas others rely upon wireless radio signals to receive and send internet content. Under these two basic categories, sit the following types of broadband:
|Type||Definition||Fixed Line or Wireless?|
|DSL||A Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) internet connection, uses your existing phone line to send and receive internet data. It is a lot faster than older ‘dial-up’ connections which also use a phone line.||Fixed Line|
|ADSL||An Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) internet connection, uses your existing phone line to send and receive internet data. It is a lot faster than older ‘dial-up’ connections which also use a phone line.||Fixed Line|
|ADSL/2+||An Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line 2+ (ADSL2+) internet connection, uses your existing phone line to send and receive internet data.||Fixed Line|
|NAKED DSL||Naked DSL is a Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) internet connection, that uses your existing phone line to send and receive internet data, but removes the ability for you to make phone calls over that phone line.
The ‘phone’ service on this connection has been ‘stripped’ away, hence the term ‘NAKED’.
|CABLE INTERNET||Cable Internet connection usually uses your cable TV cable to send and receive internet data.||Fixed Line|
|MOBILE BROADBAND||Mobile broadband is the common term used to describe ‘wireless’ internet access via a portable modem or mobile phone such as 3G or 4G.||Wireless|
5. How much does it cost?
With a large range of broadband connections available in Australia, and multiple factors such as speed, connection type and data limits to consider, it is challenging to calculate an ‘average’ cost. We recommend you follow our online needs analysis tool to help find a broadband plan that meets your needs and budget requirements from our APL.
6. Which is better, ADSL, ADSL2 / 2+, DSL?
Generally speaking, ADSL2+ is faster than the older ADSL and DSL standards. Speeds however can be impacted by a number of factors including; traffic, distance to the exchange and line quality.
7. How can I monitor my usage?
Some broadband internet service providers have websites that you can log into to monitor your usage. If all else fails, you can call your internet service provider who should be able to provide you with an up-to-date status of your current month’s usage.
8. What is bundling?
Bundling is when you combine several services from a single provider, usually at a discounted price. Some providers allow you to combine your internet connection, mobile phone, home phone and cable TV connection in the same package or ‘bundle’.
9. What is wifi and how do I use it?
Wi-Fi enables you to wirelessly connect to the internet via radio waves, without the need for wires connecting a modem to your device. Wi-Fi can enable you to connect several devices at once anywhere in the house (depending on the modem used), such as your desktop computer, tablet or mobile.
10. What kind of broadband user am I, and how much can I download?
As everyone’s internet usage requirements and budgets are different, we recommend you follow our online needs analysis tool to find a specific internet plan that meets your needs and budget requirements from our APL.
11. What is a cap?
A cap is a limit imposed by service providers on certain plans which determine how much data you can download over a certain time period.
12. What happens when I reach my download limit?
While every internet service provider treats download limits differently, some will slow down the speed of your connection to ‘dial-up’ speed (which is very slow), if you exceed your limit.
Other providers might charge you an additional fee for every additional download above your agreed limit. It’s important that you understand the contract with your service provider before signing up.
13. What is connection speed?
A connection speed relates to how quickly your internet connection can send and receive data over the internet.
14. What is VoIP?
VoIP stands for ‘Voice over Internet Protocol’, which basically means phone calls that are made over an internet connection rather than a phone line. VoIP can be a great way of reducing your phone bill if you make lots of phone calls. Some internet service providers now include VoIP as an optional extra when signing up for a broadband internet plan, and others may provide VoIP as part of a bundled plan.
15. What is Naked DSL?
Naked DSL is a Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) internet connection that uses your existing phone line to send and receive internet data, but removes the ability for you to make phone calls over that phone line. The ‘phone’ service on this connection has been ‘stripped’ away, hence the term ‘Naked’. If you do require phone calls it might be worth adding a VoIP pack to the plan.
16. What do I need to get ADSL2?
Contact iSelect to see if there is an available service in your area.
17. Do I need a modem or router?
Some providers have broadband internet plans that allow you to ‘bring your own’ modem and use it to access their internet service. This can be a good way of reducing the overall cost of your plan, as some internet plans add the cost of the modem they provide you to your monthly bill or charge an upfront fee. However, if you have an old modem it may be worth investing in a new one. Modems are superseded in the same way as computers, so an older modem may affect your internet speed.
A router is different to a modem. A router is simply a ‘splitter’ that allows you to share a single internet connection across multiple computers in your home or office. Routers come in both ‘wired’ and ‘wireless’ versions.
18. Will your broadband plan cost more with iSelect?
We are a comparison service that helps you select a broadband plan to meet your usage and budget requirements. The cost of the broadband plan we recommended is based solely upon the information you provide us during the needs analysis/consultation process and you do not pay us anything.
19. What is the iSelect broadband comparison service?
The iSelect broadband comparison service helps you compare a range of broadband internet plans from multiple providers, and assists you in selecting a plan that may meet your usage and budget requirements.
20. How do I get broadband using iSelect?
To compare a wide range of broadband internet plans and find the one that may be right for you, visit www.iselect.com.au and click the Broadband tab, or call us on 1800 098 871.
21. Will iSelect charge me any fees?
No, you don’t pay any fees for using iSelect’s service, however we do receive a commission from the provider of any broadband product you decide to purchase.
22. How do I contact my service provider?
Should you have any questions regarding the broadband internet plan you have recently purchased via iSelect’s comparison service, then you should contact the internet provider directly. iSelect does not provide broadband internet service/support for the providers listed on our site.
23. Why should I use iSelect when looking for broadband?
The number of different broadband internet plans available in Australia is very large, and making a like-for-like comparison in your own time can be a costly and time consuming exercise. By following our online needs analysis, you can find a broadband plan that may meet your specific performance and budget requirements.
24. What internet plan types does iSelect offer?
iSelect offers numerous broadband internet plans, from a range of Australia’s internet service providers. Visit www.iselect.com.au and click the Broadband tab.
25. How do I compare broadband with iSelect?
It’s easy! To compare a range of broadband internet plans from our APL and find the one that may be right for you, just click on the ‘Broadband’ tab above.
26. Why do I need broadband?
To access the internet and view online content such as websites, movies, pictures, and songs without extended download delays, you require a relatively fast ‘broadband’ internet connection. iSelect offers a range of broadband internet plans, from some of Australia’s largest internet providers.
27. What if I already have broadband?
As the features and price of broadband internet plans often change, it’s important to regularly review your plan to ensure it still meets your usage requirements. Who knows? A cheaper plan with the same features may exist that meets your needs.
28. If I’m in a contract, can I still change plans?
We recommend you contact your existing provider to determine the terms of your current contract and if there are any exit fees or disconnection charges. Depending on your plan, it may still be more cost effective to change plans and pay the exit / disconnection fees. For more information give one of our broadband experts a call on 1800 098 871.