What are NBN evening speeds?

NBN evening speeds may be different from NBN day speeds. Here’s why.

No matter what type of internet connection you’re using, NBN, home wireless broadband or something else, there are certain factors that can impact your overall speeds. Some of those factors are in the home—things like wireless interference, number of devices competing for limited bandwidth, or even in-home wiring—while others are outside.

One of those outside-the-home factors that has the potential to greatly impact your overall internet speed is during the internet’s busy evening period. Before we dive into NBN evening speeds, let’s take a look at this busy period first.

What is the internet’s busy evening period?

The internet’s busy evening period happens nightly between 7.00pm and 11.00pm, on weekdays and weekends. This is the time when most people are at home and online, whether they’re uploading pictures, playing games, streaming content or doing any number of other online activities. More people online means there’s a greater chance that your overall internet speed—downloads, uploads and latency—will be impacted by this surge of online activity from other internet users in your area.

What is the internet’s busy evening period?

The internet’s busy evening period happens nightly between 7.00pm and 11.00pm, on weekdays and weekends. This is the time when most people are at home and online, whether they’re uploading pictures, playing games, streaming content or doing any number of other online activities. More people online means there’s a greater chance that your overall internet speed—downloads, uploads and latency—will be impacted by this surge of online activity from other internet users in your area.

What are NBN evening speeds?

NBN evening speeds are the maximum download speeds you can expect to achieve on your home NBN internet connection. These speeds may be identical to the maximum potential speed of the NBN plan you’re signed up to, or they may be slower. Either way, the ACCC requires NBN fixed-line providers to self-report typical evening download speeds you can expect to achieve during the internet’s busy evening period.

All things being equal, NBN evening speeds are determined by three key external factors: the NBN technology type used to connect your home, the NBN plan you’ve signed up for and your NBN provider.

Light Bulb icon

NBN speed test

If you’re curious to see how fast your internet connection is, click on ‘Start Speed Test’ below to see your download speed. Additionally, you can click on the ‘Show More Info’ button after the download test has completed to see your latency and upload speed. It’s best to conduct this test on an Ethernet-connected computer or wireless device that’s close to your router or modem-router. Try to stop other devices using the internet before conducting the test for the best results. If the speeds are below par, reach out to your provider.

NBN technology type and max download speeds

The NBN plan you’ve signed up to will ultimately determine the maximum potential download speed you can reach, and it’s determined by the number in the name:

  • NBN 12 (NBN Basic I): up to 12Mbps download
  • NBN 25 (NBN Basic II): up to 25MBps download
  • NBN 50 (NBN Standard): up to 50Mbps download
  • NBN 100 (NBN Fast): up to 100Mbps download
  • NBN 250 (NBN Superfast): up to 250Mbps download
  • NBN 1000 (NBN Ultrafast): up to 1000Mbps download

Those first four NBN plan speeds are offered to most homes in metro areas, with NBN 250 and NBN 1000 available to select Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC) and all Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) homes.

If your home is in a regional or rural area, you may be connected to the NBN via Fixed Wireless, which has different max speed expectations:

  • Fixed Wireless Basic: up to 11Mbps download
  • Fixed Wireless Standard: up to 23Mbps download
  • Fixed Wireless Plus: up to 75Mbps download

Because overall speeds on Fixed Wireless technology are less reliable than fixed-line alternatives, NBN evening speeds may drop as low as 6Mbps. Providers aren’t required to self-report typical evening download speeds.

Below is a daily updating list of the most popular Fixed Wireless NBN plans with unlimited data in our comparison engine.

It’s a similar story for NBN satellite, which has either a max download speed of 12Mbps or 25Mbps, depending on the plan you’re signed up for. Below is a daily updating list of the most popular NBN satellite plans in our comparison engine.

NBN plan speeds

Because the ACCC requires providers to self-report their typical evening download speeds for metro areas, it’s easier to see how close NBN evening speeds come to max potential speeds. The trend of late has been towards providers offering faster and faster NBN evening speeds, which you’ll see in the lists below.

There aren’t many plans offered for the lowest NBN speed tier, but the good news is the four main plans offer parity between max potential download speed and typical evening speed (12Mbps).

It’s a similar story for NBN 25 speed tier, with the 10 fastest providers in our comparison engine offering 25Mbps self-reported typical evening download speeds.

Not to be left out, the 10 fastest NBN 50 providers in our comparison engine also offer 50Mbps parity between max potential plan speed and NBN evening speeds.

For NBN 100 and faster, things open up a bit more with a handful of providers self-reporting 100Mbps evening speeds while the others clock in at over 92Mbps or above.

None of the providers that offer NBN 250 plans guarantee typical evening download speeds of 250Mbps, but Aussie Broadband and Superloop come close.

What you may notice about the NBN 1000 plans below is that there’s a number that offer either 250Mbps or 200Mbps self-reported typical evening speeds, but the top three are noticeably faster.

NBN provider speeds

While there’s no straightforward way to say which provider is the fastest, mostly because providers tend to offer varying download speeds across plan types/speed tiers, there are providers that consistently offer faster self-reported typical evening download speeds.

The table below gives you an idea of the average download speeds of the provider plans we track in our comparison engine compared to the maximum potential download speed for each NBN speed tier. Use this as a guide for determining whether providers are offering plan speeds above or below the average.

NBN speed tierMax potential download speedAverage download speed (across providers)Fastest available plan speed
NBN 1212Mbps11.6Mbps12Mbps
(x4 providers)
NBN 2525Mbps24.5Mbps25Mbps
(x12 providers)
NBN 5050Mbps48.72Mbps50Mbps
(x14 providers)
NBN 100100Mbps92.67Mbps100Mbps
(x4 providers)
NBN 250250Mbps213.72Mbps248Mbps
(Aussie Broadband)
NBN 10001000Mbps338.89Mbps700Mbps
(Telstra)

And the table below shows the self-reported typical evening speeds for all of the providers that we track in our comparison engine.

ProviderNBN 12NBN 25NBN 50NBN 100NBN 250NBN 1000
Aussie Broadband12Mbps25Mbps50Mbps99Mbps248Mbps600Mbps
BelongN/AN/A30Mbps (capped)
40Mbps (capped)
80MbpsN/AN/A
DodoN/A25Mbps50Mbps92MbpsN/AN/A
ExetelN/A24Mbps48Mbps95MbpsN/AN/A
iiNetN/A25Mbps50Mbps90Mbps200Mbps200Mbps
InternodeN/A25Mbps50Mbps90Mbps200Mbps200Mbps
iPrimusN/AN/A50Mbps95MbpsTBDN/A
KoganN/A25Mbps50Mbps90Mbps200Mbps250Mbps
MateN/A19Mbps42Mbps83Mbps208MbpsN/A
MyRepublicN/AN/A50Mbps93Mbps200Mbps350Mbps
OptusN/AN/A50Mbps100Mbps215Mbps250Mbps
Southern Phone12Mbps25Mbps47Mbps89MbpsN/AN/A
Spintel12Mbps25Mbps50Mbps100MbpsN/AN/A
SuperloopN/A25Mbps50Mbps100Mbps240Mbps250Mbps
TangerineN/A25Mbps50Mbps92Mbps205MbpsN/A
TelstraN/A25Mbps50Mbps100Mbps230Mbps700Mbps
TPG12Mbps25Mbps50Mbps90Mbps200Mbps250Mbps
VodafoneN/A25Mbps50Mbps90MbpsN/AN/A

Provider self-reported typical evening download speeds used for both tables accurate as at 10 August 2021.

What about upload speeds?

Reliably tracking upload speeds throughout the day let alone during the busy evening period is tricky because we live in an internet world that favours download over upload. In fairness, download speed is generally more important than upload speed for most online tasks, which is likely why there’s such a divide between upload speeds and download speeds in NBN plans.

Ultimately, providers aren’t required to self-report expected upload speeds for any of their plans. While that’s frustrating for those who care about upload speeds, the table below uses the ACCC upload speed percentages from the June 2021 Measuring Broadband Australia report to give you an idea of the upload speeds you can expect during the busy evening period from 10 popular providers.

Provider upload speed %NBN 12 (1Mbps)NBN 25 (5Mbps)NBN 50 (20Mbps)NBN 100 (20/40Mbps)NBN 250 (25Mbps)NBN 1000 (50Mbps)
Aussie Broadband (81.7%)0.817Mbps4.085Mbps16.34Mbps16.34Mbps20.425Mbps32.68Mbps
Dodo & iPrimus (84.5%)No plans4.225Mbps16.9Mbps16.9Mbps21.125MbpsNo plans
Exetel (89.1%)0.891Mbps4.455Mbps17.82Mbps17.82MbpsNo plansNo plans
iiNet (81.4%)0.814Mbps4.07Mbps16.28Mbps16.28MbpsNo plansNo plans
MyRepublic (86.5%)No plansNo plans17.3Mbps17.3Mbps21.625Mbps34.6Mbps
Optus (82.7%)No plansNo plans16.54Mbps16.54Mbps20.675Mbps33.08Mbps
Superloop (84.2%)No plans4.21Mbps16.84Mbps16.84Mbps21.05Mbps33.68Mbps
Telstra (84.2%)No plans4.21Mbps16.84Mbps16.84Mbps21.05Mbps33.68Mbps
TPG (85.7%)0.857Mbps4.285Mbps17.14Mbps17.14Mbps21.425Mbps34.28Mbps
Vodafone (86.6%)No plans4.33Mbps17.32Mbps17.32MbpsNo plansNo plans