Belong NBN Review

Telstra's Belong brings broadband back to basics but for customer service, it's a chip off the old block.
Belong NBN logo
Overall Rating 3 out of 5
"Belong still offers straightforward NBN plans at a decent price but it's speeds and support are so-so

Our verdict: What’s Belong NBN like?

Belong’s NBN plans are in need of a refresh. It still offers the same straightforward NBN plans that it always did and at a good price but with the country steaming ahead with Ultrafast NBN 250 (and NBN 1000) plans, Belong is starting to feel a little dusty. Belong simply doesn’t offer many of the perks and features touted by its competitors and for its affordable price, you get middling speeds, comparatively. Customer satisfaction is also a low point for Belong.

Pros

  • Great prices
  • Simple plan structure with no gotchyas

Cons

  • No live chat option for customer support
  • Self-reported NBN speeds are just okay
  • Premium speeds are only available to FTTP, HFC and FTTC

Value for money

Cheaper than Telstra, but there are still more affordable alternatives.

Belong is Telstra’s budget alternative provider but what Telstra considers ‘budget’ isn’t necessarily any cheaper than most other NBN plans on the market. One thing Belong has going for it is its capped 30Mbps NBN plan. On a month-to-month arrangement, it’s cheaper than most NBN 25 plans, and cheaper again if you sign up for a 12-month contract but with (theoretically) better speeds.

The Belong NBN Starter Unlimited plan is hard to compare because it’s not technically an NBN 25 plan, but we’ve made an exception and included it in that category because it’s Belong’s closest comparable plan (and cheaper than a lot of plans at the NBN 25 tier).

Besides the Starter plan, Belong’s NBN plans are par for the course. Its Standard (NBN 50) and Fast (NBN 100) plans offer average value for money, but committing to a 12-month arrangement puts those plans at a cheaper monthly price for most comparable plans.

Here’s how much Belong’s Starter, Standard and Fast plans compare.

The one major setback in Belong’s suite of plans is the restrictions placed at the premium end. Belong only offers its Fast NBN 100 plan to FTTP (Fibre to the premise), FTTC (Fibre to the curb) and HFC (Hybrid-Fibre Coaxial) customers, meaning a huge portion of Australians can only sign up to the Standard NBN 50 at most. That’s not a huge loss, as Belong’s Fast plan isn’t super competitive anyway, and you’d be better served going with another provider at the premium end. In addition to that, Belong’s self-reports typical evening speeds of 80Mbps for Fast users, which is easily one of the slowest NBN Fast options on the market.

Here’s a shortlist of Fast NBN 100 plans, ordered by expected evening speeds.

Speeds: How fast is Belong NBN?

Decent speeds at the budget end, but poor performance with premium.

Belong is in a slightly unique position with its speed proposition. As mentioned above, instead of offering a typical Basic II NBN 25 plan, Belong offers a capped 30Mbps ‘Starter’ plan in roughly the same pricing bracket as most other providers’ Basic II plans. Those looking for reliable speeds on a budget could do much worse than Belong’s Starter tier but it’s Standard and Fast speeds aren’t up to scratch with the rest of the market. Here’s a brief overview of Belong’s NBN speeds.

Belong NBN speeds
PlanSelf-reported typical evening speedPlan price (monthly)Plan price (12-month)
Belong NBN Starter30Mbps$60$55
Belong NBN Standard40Mbps$70$65
Belong NBN Fast80MbpsN/A$95

That’s quite slow for NBN Standard and NBN Fast. Here’s a small selection of more popular NBN providers’ Standard speeds compared against Belong.

Belong NBN speed test

If you’re already a Belong NBN customer and you came here wondering why your connection is slow, try testing your internet speed with the tool below. If your speeds aren’t meeting expectations, consider switching to a faster NBN plan.

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Who owns Belong NBN?

Unlike Boost Mobile, which is a privately owned MVNO with full access to the Telstra network, Belong is an actual subsidiary brand of Telstra and thus entirely owned and operated by the Telstra Corporation.

Perks and features

Bare minimum broadband.

As Telstra’s budget alternative, Belong doesn’t have a lot of premium features. It’s got the basics, like no-contract options, $0 setup options, and some benefits for bundling a Belong SIM plan ($80 free mobile credit at the time of writing) but that’s about it. It doesn’t offer mobile internet plans, home phone bundles, pay-TV bundles, or any other perks and rewards (discounts, exclusive content offers etc.). Belong also doesn’t offer any Superfast or Ultrafast plans, losing a couple more points in the perks and features analysis.

If you’re after a provider that offers all the perks and features, you’ll pay a good deal more. Telstra offers all that and more, but its Ultrafast plan starts at $180 per month.

If you’re interested in NBN 250 (Superfast), take a look at the most popular options available to select FTTP and HFC customers.

Support and satisfaction

Phone support, responsive social accounts but no live chat.

If you need to get in touch with Belong, you can get in touch with their customer support team via Facebook, phone or email. There just isn’t a live chat service or any brick-and-mortar stores you can reach out to if you run into trouble. For the number of support channels available, Belong’s score is typical amongst internet providers but where it takes a dive is in its customer satisfaction metrics. We compile user review data from a variety of sources (like Product Review, Trustpilot etc.) and, sadly, it seems Belong is a chip off the old block when it comes to customer satisfaction. In our analysis, Belong scored an average of 1.8 out of 5, which is at the low end of the spectrum.

Providers that scored highly for customer satisfaction included Mate Broadband, Tangerine, Aussie Broadband and Internode. Here are a few popular plans from those providers.

Belong NBN plans

Now that we’ve weighed up the pros and cons of Belong NBN, let’s recap. Belong’s speed-capped NBN Starter plan is a solid option for cheap NBN with reliable speeds, but its faster, more expensive plans are less competitive in both price and speed. Belong is a slim and trim internet provider, so there aren’t a lot of bells and whistles in store for customers unless they’re planning on bundling a Belong SIM card. Still, there’s something to be said for the Telstra alternatives affordability in both the mobile and internet space.

Let’s wrap up by taking another gander at the range of Belong NBN plans.

If you’re not sold on Belong, take a look at this week’s most popular NBN plans overall in the table below.

Don’t feel like you belong with Belong?

We’ve got plenty of reviews on alternative providers, such as Aussie Broadband, Optus and Exetel. Alternatively, find out what we had to say about the very best NBN plans on the market, or consider switching to a top-notch Home Wireless Broadband plan. Not sure how fast your internet is? Check how fast your downloads are with our NBN internet speed test tool.

  • Renae

    Personally don’t recommend to connect with Belong. Their customer service is terribly poor. If you have any issues occuring, it’s very difficult to reach a technical support, because no service number provided for customers to reach to. If you email them regarding your urgent issue, no customer support to give you a call and support. They leave you being helpless in the dark room for ages. It is sooooooo disappointing with their poor customer service. It was a nightmare. I would never recommend anybody I know to go with Belong!!!

  • Melinda

    I would never recommend anyone to use Belong. Their customer service is horrible. They do not respond to technical support and their complaints department take months to get back to you. 6 months ago I noticed they were double charging my account. The service was always being disrupted. Countless times the modem would just stop working. The only way I could get a response was to report them to the Telecommunications Ombudsman which resulted in a complaints specialist to contact me who outright lied to me about everything to cover themselves. If companies like Belong wish to operate in Australia they should learn to comply with Australian Consumer Law which they do not. I have now moved to another service provider. I have never had such a bad experience with an internet provider. I previously was with DODO but they could not provide me a service where I now live. They were amazing I wish I could go back to them. Looks like I am on the hunt for another internet providor.

  • So very unhappy

    Customer beware!!! Belong are billing me.for a service that was never connected. Their team admitted fault but as soon as I raised a complaint all contact stopped. No one will deal with me as I’m told my account can now only be handled by a complaint manager. Except those never contact you. Or reply to you. They leave you a telephone line that is a voicemail service only that’s full. It’s all consumer bullying. I am stuck where I am now paying for a service that’s never been connected but that I can’t cancel because I won’t get a refund on my 12 month contract. Stuck in limbo with no Internet and it would seem no recourse. How is this legal!!? Need to stay away from this company!

  • Joanne Spicer

    Totally agree customer service sucks email addresses given invalid phone number gives you just a recorded message of an invalid email address ,web site can’t submit without password not given .Rang Telstra told not their problem .Lost card new number that they don’t have belong won’t be able to access direct debit wonder if they might try to contact me now🙂

  • Evan

    Belong is a con job. Will spend plenty of time making the sale, and then go missing. You can’t call them or get any customer response. Only bot-like messages on social media. I’ve been in my new apartment a week and still no internet, no responses from Belong, even though NBN box is showing 4 green lights. And to top it off, the bot-like social media responses are obnoxious!