Telstra BigPond Wireless Broadband

The Good Wireless broadband with no hotspots. Broader total coverage area.

The Bad Costly. Reception can vary widely. Fragile modem antenna.

The Bottom Line As long as you're a metropolitan broadband user, Telstra BigPond Wireless Broadband delivers well, but it can't be said to be an inexpensive broadband option.

0.0 Overall

Compare

Telstra BigPond Wireless Broadband
Telstra BigPond Wireless Broadband
Google Wifi
Google Wifi
Asus RT-AC88U Router
Asus RT-AC88U router
Netgear Orbi RBK50 WiFi System
Netgear Orbi Wi-Fi System
ASUS ROG Rapture GT-AC5300
Asus ROG Rapture GT-AC5300
Price $839 Typical Price $839 Typical Price $839 Typical Price $839 Typical Price $839 Typical Price
Setup ...
9
8
8
7
Features ...
7
9
8
9
Performance ...
9
9
9
9
Support ...
8
7
... ...

Review

Telstra BigPond Wireless Broadband

Design
Telstra offers its BigPond Wireless Broadband service with either a fixed desktop modem or a PC Card roaming modem for notebook users. The notebook option is the more expensive option, both in upfront cost (AU$199 for desktop, AU$299 for PC card) and in the plan cost, which varies depending on the usage plan you select. We tested with the notebook variant, and given Telstra's claimed coverage map for the actual broadband part of the service, it's fair to suggest that most of the users will do likewise; within most of the coverage areas there's an embarrassment of riches when it comes to broadband choice.

Installation of the service involves a relatively pain-free installation - we tested with the Windows software, but it's also available for Mac OS X 10.2.8 and better users -- and then insertion of the PC Card Modem. The PC Card modem for the service is a standard Type II card with a very slender antennae that works best in an upright position. There's only one problem here, and it's particularly pressing for a product that's intended to be mobile. The antenna is fixed on with a very slender little antennae that's somewhat reminiscent of the type of antennae you'd find on mobile phones about eight years ago. This is hardly surprising, as the broadband service does use Telstra's mobile network for operation -- but it's also somewhat worrying, as it feels extremely fragile. We used very light fingers and lots of caution during our testing, but could easily imagine the antennae snapping, at which point you'd be out a further AU$299 for a replacement.

Features
Telstra offers the wireless broadband service on two platforms. Within a coverage area, you'll connect to its 1xEV-DO service, which offers broadband speeds of up to 512kbps, although that's only for downloads -- uploads run at a far more sedate 64kbps. Outside the coverage area, you'll connect to the significantly slower CDMA service. Telstra calls this "high speed" in its marketing material, but also notes that while it's capable of bursts of up to 144kpbs, an average speed of 80-100kbps is more realistic.

Continue Reading

How To

Your router isn't as fast as you think it is. Here's why

Your router isn't as fast as you think it is. Here's why

How to set up Google Wifi

How to set up Google Wifi

How to turn an old Wi-Fi router into an access point

How to turn an old Wi-Fi router into an access point

10 things to consider when buying a router

10 things to consider when buying a router

The most common Wi-Fi problems and how to fix them

The most common Wi-Fi problems and how to fix them

Maximize your Wi-Fi

Maximize your Wi-Fi

Test your network with Chrome Connectivity Diagnostics

Test your network with Chrome Connectivity Diagnostics

Home networking explained, Part 8: Cable modem shopping tips

Home networking explained, Part 8: Cable modem shopping tips

Home networking explained, part 2: Optimizing your Wi-Fi network

Home networking explained, part 2: Optimizing your Wi-Fi network

Sync up your life with Dropbox

Sync up your life with Dropbox

How to speed up your internet connection

How to speed up your internet connection

Latest News