iiNet NBN Review

iiNet offers bang for your bundles but this Aussie ISP has never been the same since TPG took over.
Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Second best for Netflix after Telstra and Optus
Decent Fetch TV Bundles
Fine print fees abound

iiNet NBN has undergone one of the biggest improvements since the ACCC began tracking broadband speeds in Australia but its customer service has taken a dive over the years.

For years, iiNet was known as the Australian ISP with kooky ads, competitive month-to-month plans and outstanding customer service. Which is why TPG bought the telco for a cool $1.56 billion in 2015.

Founded in Perth in 1993, iiNet slowly expanded across Australia and New Zealand thanks to some clever acquisitions, like ihug in New Zealand and Westnet in Australia. Between 2004 and 2006, the Perth-bred ISP forked out for its own DSLAM infrastructure; introducing some of the fastest DSL speeds in Australia at the time (an unimaginable 1.5 Mbps).

From there, iiNet went from strength to strength thanks to its quality products, renowned customer service and memorable ad campaigns starring “that iiNet guy” (David Lee Smyth).

The TPG-owned incarnation of iiNet has moved in a different direction, now focusing more on value than customer service. These days, iiNet offers competitive 90 Mbps Fibre plans with decent upload speeds, some good value (but a little iffy) Fetch bundles and a serious speed improvement since the ACCC started tracking NBN providers in Australia.

Best iiNet NBN Plan 

The most popular iiNet NBN plan by far is the iiNet NBN50 Liimitless 6-month contract plan. It offers unlimited data at a premium evening speed of typically 43.5 Mbps for $74.99 per month, plus an upfront set-up fee of $129.94.

The real deal-breaker for most though is its Fetch Premium TV Bundle deal at no extra cost for the first 6 months when you sign up (you’ll still need to pay a $59.99 set-up fee though). You’ll get a Fetch set-top box as well. Usually, iiNet’s Fetch TV Bundle will cost you an additional $5 per month on top of the set-up fee. 

Get more details in our Fetch TV Bundle section below. Not sure this is the right TV bundle for you? Learn more about the best TV and internet bundles in our best picks roundup. 

For those that aren’t keen on getting Fetch TV and prefer a no lock-in contract, you could alternatively opt for the iiNet NBN50 Limitless no-contract plan for $74.99 a month.

More popular iiNet NBN Plans:

How does this compare to my other options?

If you’re simply looking for a cheap NBN plan with unlimited data, you can’t go past Tangerine’s XL Speed Boost UNLIMITED providing unlimited data on NBN Standard Plus for $59.90 a month with no lock-in contract.

Otherwise, if you’re set on getting a TV and internet bundle, you might also want to consider the Telstra Unlimited Data (NBN) no-contract plan. For $90 a month, as well as unlimited data at NBN Standard Plus speed, you’ll get 3 months of Foxtel Now, a bonus first month of internet, a bonus 20,000 Telstra Plus points and a $99 connection fee waiver. This deal is for a limited time only and the Foxtel Now sign-up bonus will expire on 30 April 2020. 

For those willing to fork up a little more and who aren’t fussed about committing to a 24-month contract, you might also want to think about Telstra’s TV + Unlimited Data (NBN) plan. For $99 per month, on top of all the inclusions with its Unlimited Data (NBN) Plan, you’ll also receive a new Telstra TV with Telstra TV Box Office. 

More popular NBN plans

Fastest iiNet NBN Plans

The fastest iiNet NBN Plan for personal use is its NBN100 Liimitless Plan which offers unlimited data on its NBN Premium speed of typically 80.5Mbps for $99.99 a month. This is available on either a 6-month or no-contract term.

Alternatively, businesses could opt for iiNet’s Business NBN100 Essentials Plan, which provides the fastest speeds you can get with iiNet at typically 84.9 Mbps during business hours for $99.99 a month. The only catch is that if you want unlimited data instead of the 300GB you’ll get on the Essentials Plan, you’ll need to pay an extra $10 for the Business NBN100 Value Plan ($109.99 per month in total).

What are my other options?

If you simply want an NBN plan with the fastest speed, there’s no going past Superloop’s UNLIMITED 100/20 or UNLIMITED 100/40 Plan. You can expect typical evening speeds of 90 Mbps. 

You might also want to consider activ8me’s Unlimited HyperSonic Plan that reports a typical evening speed of 88.6 Mbps. Otherwise, following closely in third, Telstra’s Premium Speed + Unlimited Data Plan also offers one of the quickest NBN speeds, with a reported typical evening speed of 88 Mbps. 

More of the fastest NBN plans

How fast is iiNet NBN?

According to the latest ACCC Broadband Performance Data, iiNet ranked fifth for average download speeds during busy hours and sixth for download speeds in the busiest hour. It also placed fifth for upload speeds during busy hours. 

In terms of latency, iiNet placed fourth out of the NBN bunch, averaging 15.2ms. That’s a pretty good improvement considering that last year they had the second-highest latency at 16.9 ms. 

Netflix’s ISP speed ranking places iiNet as your next best bet for streaming Brooklyn Nine-Nine after Telstra, Optus and Aussie Broadband – the latter narrowly ranked ahead of iiNet by 0.02 Mbps. On average, iiNet NBN streams Netflix at 4.48 Mbps. To compare, Telstra, in first place, clocked in at 4.69 Mbps.

Satellite iiNet NBN Plans

For satellite NBN, iiNet’s NBN Satellite 150 Basic which gives you 150GB for $39.99 per month is one of the most popular satellite plans around.

Alternatively, you might want to consider SkyMesh’s NBN-SB-65-125 Sky Muster plan offering 190GB at standard Satellite NBN evening speed for $54.95 per month. Activ8me’s Sky Muster 150GB Standard could be another good option for those on a budget. You’ll get 150GB at basic evening satellite speed for $34.95 per month.

See more popular Satellite NBN Plans:

The best iiNet NBN Fetch bundle

If you’re fixing for some Fetch, iiNet offers a competitive NBN Standard Plus (nbn50) bundle. You will need to add premium channel add-ons (at $6 a pop) when you build your plan but that’s the same story for every provider offering Fetch.

iiNet’s Fetch bundles are decent value but the marketing implies the set-top box cost is included in the plan. In reality, the upfront equipment fees are hidden as “set-up fees” in the fine print.

Fetch’s hardware is plug-and-play and requires no set-up on iiNet’s end.

This set-up fee for each is also conveniently priced accordingly with the outright RRP. The Mini will cost you $59.99 to set up and the Mighty will cost you $399.99. An odd bit of tomfoolery on iiNet’s behalf.

All that’s on top of the $10 delivery fee (and the $5 per month you pay to bundle Fetch, currently waived in their Fetch TV Bundle Deal) plus whatever channel packs you decide to tack on.

We asked iiNet’s customer service to explain what the set-up fee covered. The rep claimed that the $59.99/$399.99 charge was to cover iiNet’s part in “preconfiguring” the hardware.

Also, while you technically own the Fetch box once you’ve forked out for it, the box will be forever locked to iiNet, rendering it totally useless if you ever switch providers.

iiNet Fetch TV Bundle NBN Plans:

What is Fetch TV iiNet?

Fetch TV is Foxtel’s humble Pay TV competitor in Australia. Though that’s not to say the two are comparable. Where Foxtel is concerned with absolutely murdering your wallet for the privilege of watching a couple of HBO shows, Fetch offers a smaller selection of premium channels, such as Comedy Central, ESPN, National Geographic and BBC UKTV, at a fraction of the cost.

Fetch’s affordable hardware comes in two variants, the Fetch Mini and the Fetch Mighty. The Mini is a slim set-top box with pause and rewind features for live TV and support for 1080p HD streaming, where the Mighty is a more robust box with 1 TB of onboard storage, 4 TV tuners and support for 4K/UHD streaming.

Both boxes include 30 pre-selected movie rentals per month, access to digital movie and TV show purchases and support for Netflix, Stan, hayu, YouTube and more.

Fetch has four channel packs available for purchase: Kids, Knowledge, Vibe and Variety. Each will cost you an additional $6 per month on top of your monthly iiNet bill. If you want to save yourself $4 per month, the Ultimate pack gives you all four packs for $20 per month.

There are also a few special interest channels, such as Optus Sport, beIN Sports and… Horse and Country? And a few international channel packs, including the Taj Mahal, Chinese and Pinoy and packs. Special interest and world channel packs all come at a premium, ranging from $9.95 to $19.99 per month.

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What is iiNet Freezone?

iiNet Freezone was meant to be a collection of services that could be used on iiNet broadband connections. By all accounts, partnered services like Xbox Live and iTunes were unmetered at some stage, that’s no longer the case for most iiNet connections.

The majority of iiNet connections don’t qualify for Freezone anymore, with the exception of OptiComm FTTH connections in Victoria and South Brisbane (and a long list of Grandfathered plans). To top it off, the Freezone website doesn’t look like it has seen any action in years. Most of the section tabs don’t hold any content and none of the apparently “live” broadcasts, like Kitty Cam, redirect to anything.

It’s the internet equivalent of a burnt out Torana on the side of the road.

How is iiNet’s customer service?

As TPG has started to move iiNet to a more value focussed offering, it looks like its customer care has suffered at that expense. One year after the TPG takeover, the TIO (Telecommunication Industry Ombudsman) reported that iiNet complaints had increased by nearly 50%. There was an overall 22.1% increase in complaints across the telco industry, most around poor NBN connections, to the TIO over that period but iiNet’s fall from grace was notable.

I was an iiNet customer during the acquisition and distinctly recall the change in tone and treatment from what I once considered one of the best customer service experiences I’d ever had (and I was an Optus employee to boot).

Overall, old iiNet just ain’t what it used to be. Which is a shame because I’d really like to see the iiNet guy continue to crush it. If you value customer service over price or are just trying to recapture some of that old iiNet magic, we’d recommend a provider like Mate Broadband or Aussie Broadband for outstanding customer service and transparency.

What is my internet speed on iiNet?

If your downloads are taking a little longer than usual or your stream is buffering beyond what’s acceptable, try running a speed test when connected to your home Wi-Fi network.

If the result is below what you’re paying for, there are a few common causes and solutions.

Why is my iiNet NBN so slow?

Firstly, check the time. Australia’s busiest hours for broadband usage are between 7:00 pm and 11:00 pm. Congestion between these hours can impact your download speed significantly.

The ACCC broadband performance data suggests iiNet users can expect around 84.5% of their maximum NBN speed in busy hours and around 78.6% of their maximum NBN speed in iiNet’s busiest hour for traffic.

If it’s well below that percentage or you’re browsing outside busy hours, we’d recommend running through some basic troubleshooting (like power cycling your modem) before getting in touch with iiNet’s tech support team.

Now that you know, here are your next steps.

Not sold on iiNet? Check out Belong NBN.

READ REVIEW

Otherwise, consider TPG NBN.

READ REVIEW