Best Mobile Phone Plans in July 2020

We've revamped our rankings to cover more usage needs and to highlight some sweet picks.
Recent Updates: 1 month ago
This July, we've mixed things up a bit. We've revamped our process for our monthly Editor's picks to include the very best budget picks, the most popular plans by network, and highlighted perks where a telco is chucking in a sweet bonus.
2 months ago
In June, your options for smartphone plans remain the same, but it's a clean sweep for Circles.Life when it comes to SIM-only plans.
3 months ago
This May, Optus remains the best choice for most handsets but Circles.Life's outrageous discount on its 100GB plan is an offer too good to refuse.

Every month, Australia keeps a keen eye on the comings and goings of the mobile market to offer insight, analysis, and recommendations for the best mobile phone plans available. We segment our awards into a few categories: Phone Plans, SIM-Only Plans, Mobile Data Plans, iPhone Plans, with smaller award categories for plans on each mobile network, Telstra, Vodafone, and Optus. Our deep-dive weighs up the cost and inclusions for every major Australian telco and MVNO so you can find the best mobile plan suited for you ,whether you’re looking for an iPhone, a Google Pixel, or just more data to get you through the month. Here are our top picks for the best mobile phone plans this month.

Best Value Plans

Best Value SIM Plan in July

Circles.Life 100GB Monthly

There’s no getting around it, Circles.Life is still running laps around the competition when it comes to pure data per dollar value. Circles.Life’s 100GB Monthly plan offers more monthly data than most users need for their day to day usage, but at $28 per month, it’s a deal almost too good to refuse.

The ongoing Circles.Life bargain offers unlimited calls and text on the Optus 4G network and no lock-in contract. To give you an idea of how that stacks up, take a look at other 100GB options on the market.

The end date for this deal is currently 5:00PM AEST on 8 July 2020 but we’ll update this post if it’s extended again.

Here’s a quick summary of what that plan gets you.

  • 100GB of monthly data
  • $28 per month
  • Unlimited calls and text
  • 3GB Bill Shock Protection
  • Optus 4G coverage

The ongoing Circles.Life bargain offers unlimited calls and text on the Optus 4G network and no lock-in contract.  To give you an idea of how that stacks up, take a look at other 100GB options on the market. 

Best Value Phone Plan in July

Vodafone $40 Red Plus Plan

For our best value phone plan, we use the iPhone 11 64GB as the handset for our comparisons and plans with 10GB or more on a 36-month arrangement.

  • 10GB per month
  • Unlimited calls and text
  • Vodafone’s $5 Roaming
  • No excess data charges
  • Vodafone 4G Network
  • Further bundle discounts up to 20% with additional services

This month, Vodafone takes the lead for the best value phone plan for most. Vodafone’s $40 Red Plus Plan offers 10GB of monthly data, unlimited calls and text, and additional discounts for bundled services. With an iPhone 11 64GB, Vodafone’s Red Plus plan will cost you just over $70 per month.

If you think you need more monthly data, head over to our best iPhone plans guide for a deeper dive into inclusions and value.

Here are more popular iPhone 11 64GB plans.

How we choose the best mobile phone plan

For our best mobile phone plan pick, we only use mobile plans that can be paired with a handset. That narrows down the number of eligible providers dramatically. We then weigh the included data, calls/text (standard national), international (roaming and international calling), perks (Apple Music, Optus Sport, etc.) against the monthly price to find the cheapest plans with the most inclusions.

We use a small selection of premium handsets to compare these plans with. Currently, we use the iPhone 11 64GB, iPhone 11 Pro 64GB, the Google Pixel 4 128GB and the Samsung Galaxy S20 128GB, Galaxy S20 + 128GB but these choices are subject to change as new flagship handsets are released.

Head to our methodology page for more information

Best Plans with Perks

Best mobile plan perks this month

Woolworths Mobile + Bose SoundLink

In our top picks, we typically evaluate the two things that matter most: monthly data and spend. However, getting a sweet perk, like an included streaming subscription or a free pair of headphones, is always a nice added bonus that we don’t discuss enough. So this month, we’ve included a ‘best overall value’ category that factors in other associated plan perks and bonuses.

Perks and bonuses don’t change as frequently as the other categories in our round-up, so this section is less of an overall value analysis, and more of a curated pick for highlighted bonuses.

Bose SoundLink Headphones

If you’re sorted for headphones, then check out Telstra’s offer of 3 months of Binge Standard (valued at $42 all up). That same plan also gets you data-free streaming for Apple Music and a handful of sports, as well as 10,000 bonus Telstra Plus points when you bundle a handset. As an added bonus, Telstra Plus users can rack up even more free Binge, depending on their tier. Our friends at WhistleOut have explained everything there is to know about Telstra Plus here.

Best Budget Plans

Best Budget Smartphone Plan in July

iPhone SE 64GB on Optus

This month, we’ve added a best budget phone plan to our top picks for those looking to hook up a new handset without breaking the bank. It’s a close tie between the Samsung Galaxy A51 and the iPhone SE this month, and Apple’s contender has clinched the win.

The new iPhone SE is an outstanding budget alternative for Apple die-hards that sports a lot of last-gen tech, like a single-lens 12MP camera, and TouchID, but powers it all with a 2020 A13 processing chip. Vodafone and Optus offer it for the exact same price, but we’ve put Optus out in front this month, thanks to its more comprehensive coverage and included perks.

With that said, Samsung stans can get their fix for less than $50 per month with Woolworths Mobile’s Galaxy A51 deals.

Cheapest Mobile Plan

Pennytel 1GB Green SIM Plan

We have two requirements for our cheapest mobile plans category. The plan needs at least 1GB of data and needs to come in below $10 per month. There are technically cheaper Pay As You Go (PAYG) plans but they work out a lot more expensive if you actually use your phone. This month, Southern Phone’s 12-month Green SIM plan takes the win. It gets you 1GB of data to use, and unlimited calls and text on the Optus 4G network.

Here’s a few more of the cheapest mobile plans this month so you can compare your options.

Best Plan for Big Data

Circles.Life 100GB Monthly Plan

When you’ve got a big appetite for data, there’s no point wading in the shallows of 5 to 10GB of monthly data, because if you’re like us, you’ll just end up paying more in excess fees anyway. So this month, we’re expanding our big data category to go far beyond typical usage in Australia to show you the plans that give you the most data available on a phone plan.

This month, there’s just no getting around that sweet Circles.Life 100GB deal. Even if you take a gander at the competition, there’s providers offering more data, but none offer such an absurd amount at a reasonable price. We really hope other telcos start upping their game so we can give them a run in these results, but in the meantime, Circles is your best bet for buckets of data.

Best Plans By Network

Most Popular on Telstra Network

Telstra 40GB SIM Plan

If coverage is your primary concern, you might be looking for the best deal on Telstra’s network (or wholesale network if we’re talking MVNOs). This section doesn’t get the same monthly treatment as the rest of our top picks, but our “most popular” plan filter is still a good indication of the best trending deals and is updated every day.

Most Popular on Optus Network

Circles.Life 20GB Monthly Plan

Similarly, those who have sufficient Optus coverage that don’t feel like spending a primo on Telstra can suss out the results below to find out which plans on the Optus network are trending this week.

Most Popular on Vodafone Network

Vodafone 10GB Plan

There aren’t as many Vodafone MVNOs on the scene as there are for Optus and Telstra, but if the third-biggest Australian network is good enough for your needs, take a look at the trending plans below to find a solid deal.

Now that you know, here are your next steps.

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