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NBN speeds: Which speed is right for you?

City buildings at night with a red light trailing through.

When you first start to compare NBN plans, you might be understandably stumped by what each NBN speed actually means. To determine which speed is right for you, you’ll want to consider how many people are using the internet in your household, and what their usage is like.

The most common choice among Australians is an NBN 50 plan, likely because it easily caters for a household of two to four people who want to watch Netflix, game online or work from home simultaneously – and it’s reasonably affordable.

If you have a larger household, you might want to look at an NBN 100 plan or above, while light internet users or small households can do just fine with an NBN 25 plan.

NBN 25 plans

  • 25Mbps download
  • 5Mbps upload
  • 1-2 users

NBN 25 plans come with a maximum download speed of 25Mbps and are best-suited to small households with one or two users connected at the same time. You’ll be able to comfortably browse the internet simultaneously and use streaming services in 1080p video quality with NBN 25 speed.

NBN Co refers to the NBN 25 speed tier as Basic II, and anyone with a fixed-line connection will be able to sign up.

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Last updated 21 July 2024

NBN 50 plans

  • 50Mbps download
  • 20Mbps upload
  • 2-4 users

NBN 50 is the most popular NBN plan available, with the majority of Australians opting for this speed tier. You’ll see NBN Co refer to this speed tier as Standard, and it offers maximum download speeds of 50Mbps and upload speeds topping 20Mbps.

This NBN speed can handle multiple users streaming video in high definition at the same time, and still have room for online gaming. The increased upload speed also allows for smooth video calls while working from home.

Anyone with a fixed-line connection can sign up for an NBN 50 plan.

Mozo may receive payment if you click to the website of one of the products below currently available via our partner, WhistleOut. They do not compare the entire market, but you can see more options by clicking on the View Full Results link in the table.
Last updated 21 July 2024

NBN 100 plans

  • NBN 100/20 = 100Mbps download and 20Mbps upload
  • NBN 100/40 = 100Mbps download and 40Mbps upload
  • 5+ users

There are two variations of NBN 100 plans – while both have a maximum download speed of 100Mbps, one comes with an upload of 20Mbps and the other offers uploads of 40Mbps. All told, NBN 100/20 plans are more commonly available.

NBN Co refers to both variations as Fast, and these plans are suitably equipped to handle large households with five people or more all using the internet at the same time. An NBN 100 plan will be able to stream multiple 4K videos, though you might get buffering if you try to have more than two or three going at once.

While there are two faster speeds available, both are limited in which NBN connection types can access them. It means that NBN 100 plans are the most widely available fast internet plans in Australia. You can check your address on the NBN Co website if you’re unsure what connection type you have.

Mozo may receive payment if you click to the website of one of the products below currently available via our partner, WhistleOut. They do not compare the entire market, but you can see more options by clicking on the View Full Results link in the table.
Last updated 21 July 2024

NBN 250 plans

  • 250Mbps download
  • 25Mbps upload
  • 5+ users

NBN 250 plans offer eligible households download speeds of up to 250Mbps, which will allow you to watch numerous streaming services in 4K video quality simultaneously, as well as download large files and updates quickly. In other words, households with five or more demanding internet users will be well catered for.

This speed tier is officially called Superfast by NBN Co, and it is limited in who is able to sign up. Your household will need to have either a fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) or a hybrid fibre coaxial (HFC) connection in order to sign up for an NBN 250 plan, so check your address on the NBN website if you’re unsure what you’ve got. You may even be eligible for an NBN upgrade.

Mozo may receive payment if you click to the website of one of the products below currently available via our partner, WhistleOut. They do not compare the entire market, but you can see more options by clicking on the View Full Results link in the table.
Last updated 21 July 2024

NBN 1000 plans

  • 1,000Mbps download
  • 50Mbps upload
  • 5+ users

The fastest NBN speed available to everyday consumers is NBN 1000. This speed tier is theoretically capable of maximum download speeds of 1,000Mbps (or 1Gbps) and upload speeds of up to 50Mbps, but it’s important to note that what the telcos actually offer varies widely.

For example, NBN provider Swoop advertises a typical evening speed of 975Mbps on its NBN 1000 plan, which is the fastest we can find at the time of writing. Meanwhile, Kogan Internet reports a typical evening speed of 250Mbps on its NBN 1000 plan, which highlights the need to shop around.

NBN Co officially calls this speed tier Ultrafast, and it’s only available to eligible households with an FTTP or HFC connection. It’s incredibly fast, and likely excessive for the majority of internet users, but if you have five or more people connected at once and you simply have no time to wait for downloads, it could be an option for you.

Mozo may receive payment if you click to the website of one of the products below currently available via our partner, WhistleOut. They do not compare the entire market, but you can see more options by clicking on the View Full Results link in the table.
Last updated 21 July 2024

Is NBN 12 worth it?

We would argue that NBN 12 plans are not worth your money. These internet plans come with a top download speed of 12Mbps, which is fine for everyday internet use, social media scrolling and watching YouTube in HD video quality, but that’s not where the issue arises.

We don’t generally recommend an NBN 12 plan because it doesn’t offer good value for money. For example, at the time of writing the average cost of an NBN 12 plan is almost $63 among the providers we monitor. By comparison, an NBN 25 plan which offers double the speed costs $68 a month on average.

How to check your NBN speed?

You can easily check your NBN speed by doing an NBN speed test. To get started, all you need to do is click ‘start test’ on the MLab widget below and you’ll find out your current download speed, upload speed and jitter results.

NBN speeds: FAQ

What is a good NBN speed?

A good NBN speed is one that suits your needs best. The most popular choice for Australian households is an NBN 50 plan, which is enough speed for two to four people to use the internet at the same time.

If you’re on a budget or you live in a household with one or two people, then a good NBN speed for you might be an NBN 25 plan, which offers speeds of 25Mbps.

On the other hand, larger households and high-data users might need to upgrade to an NBN 100 plan or faster to get the speed they need.

What NBN speed can I get at my address?

You’ll first want to check your address on the NBN Co website to find out what connection type you have, as the range of NBN speeds available to you is dependent on the physical connection available at your address.

If you're lucky enough to have an FTTP connection, then you should be able to sign up for any plan speed up to NBN 1000.

With a handful of exceptions, most households with HFC should similarly be able to sign up to any plan up to NBN 1000.

If you have a fibre-to-the-building (FTTB) or fibre-to-the-curb (FTTC), then it’s highly likely you won’t be able to access anything faster than an NBN 100 plan. For fibre-to-the-node (FTTN), we don’t recommend going any higher than NBN 50.

Jasmine Gearie
Jasmine Gearie
Senior Money Writer

Jasmine joined Mozo from TechRadar Australia, where she covered the telco and NBN sector for over four years. She’s now turned her attention to the world of personal finance, with a special interest and expertise in home loans and savings accounts. Jasmine studied a Bachelor of Communication (Journalism and Public Relations).