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My NBN experience with Optus: Pre-connection

Crowd Champion Davelew
Crowd Champion
10 22 5,854

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Hi, I’m Dave and as a Yes Crowd member who frequently reads posts of Optus customers experiences with connecting to the NBN I thought it may be interesting and, hopefully, informative if I record my experience as I transfer from ADSL2 to NBN Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC). My intention with this blog is firstly to explain my internet needs and my initial thoughts of the plan I am likely to require. My second post will be about my experience on the connection date and whether the NBN has met my expectations.

My wife and I, who are in our early seventies, live in a large three-bedroom house in the Southern suburbs of Sydney and have been with Optus home broadband for a couple of years. I have been keeping an eye on the NBN website and have regularly searched my address for when our house will be ready for connection. Three weeks ago I was delighted to read our house was ready for connection using HFC.

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From the information I have read, this should give us a reliable and speedy connection. Since then, I have had an email from Telstra and a couple of mail shots from other providers informing me of their interest in providing NBN broadband to my house. This has given me the push to rethink my internet needs.

 

Current Broadband Connection

 

I have had a home broadband connection for a number of years and for the last two years, I have been with Optus (ADSL2 connection). During this time I have not had any service problems and have speeds of usually around 10-12 mbps, which has been perfectly adequate to stream videos, etc. However, occasionally these speeds do drop and then I have some buffering. This happens at the times you would expect, i.e. early evenings etc., and also when my grandson is with us watching videos or playing computer games on-line with his friends.


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Our Household Needs

Usually it is a two person household but occasionally we have our 15 year old grandson staying and also the occasional guest.  

We have numerous connected devices:

  • Laptop
  • Windows tablet
  • iPad
  • iPod (used to stream radio)
  • Smart phones
  • Smart TV
  • Fetch Box Mighty
  • DVD player (seldom used)
  • Google Chromecast dongles on both our televisions and Google Home smart speakers.

We stream a lot of our viewing requirements from CatchUp TV apps, Netflix, Stan, YouTube and Optus Sport. Sometimes have problems with our free to air TV reception and then we stream live TV. All our radio is streamed through the internet along with our music using Google Play Music.

We tend to record the early evening news bulletins on our Fetch Box along with some programs from BBC First and Optus Sport. We also like the ability to be able to pause and rewind live TV.

 

Thinking about what the NBN plan should include:

  • Unlimited data – I don’t want to worry whether we are going over our allowance.
  • NBN tier 50 speed - This should provide ample speed for video and gaming even when our grandson is staying.
  • Fetch Top Box Mighty -  Ideally, unless it was cheaper in the long run to buy either a Fetch or similar PVR.
  • Home Phone - I wouldn’t bother but my wife likes a home phone even though it is seldom used nowadays.

Selection of the NBN Plan and Provider

 

Until I started researching for my NBN plan, I did not realise how many providers there now are so I started my search by looking at the comparison sites of which, for me, I found WhistleOut to be the easiest to navigate.  Plans tended to start around $60 per month but without a Fetch Box. Looking at plans with a Fetch box I was up to the $80 mark, but this only included a Fetch mini with which you cannot record programs. 

The more I researched I kept coming back to look at what Optus was offering on their $90 Ultra Entertainment Plan:

  • Unlimited Data
  • Mid Tier speed – 40 mbps evening speed.
  • Incudes Optus Sport
  • Fetch Box Mini incl. 1 channel pack - $5 per month extra for a Fetch Mighty
  • Home Phone
  • $10 discount as I have an eligible Optus Mobile plan.

At the moment I think I will opt for this plan as it will only cost an extra $5 per month with the added advantage of the extra data speed.  Compared to other providers it also included Optus Sport which I would subscribe to if I went to another ISP. (Supported Liverpool FC for most of my life and wouldn’t want to miss this season when they win the Championship). Until I commit to Optus, I will continue to research other plans.

 

Timescale

 

I don’t know and as I am likely to stay with Optus, I will wait for them to contact me. Once they do, I will post my second blog in the series to keep you informed about my connection experience.

 

I would be really interested in your thoughts on requirements you think I have missed, your choice of plans, and when you swapped to the NBN. Please comment below.

22 Comments
Esteemed Contributor
Esteemed Contributor

Awesome post Dave!

RetiredModerator Megan_YC
RetiredModerator

This is a fantastic article, Dave! It's so interesting to hear about your experience so far and what you're thinking you'll do next. We're so lucky to have you @Davelew Smiley Very Happy

 

Keeping my fingers crossed for you that Liverpool FC come through with the win Smiley LOL

Crowd Champion MiCCAS
Crowd Champion

Awesome blog post!

Online Community Manager
Online Community Manager

Love it @Davelew

 

Looking forward to part 2 Smiley Happy 

Frequent Contributor
Frequent Contributor

Dave, I was just like you.  I have been with OPTUS for 20 odd years with phones and for a brief period pre DSL I had dial up connection with OPTUS, however when in the usual way of controlling bodies take over ADSL comes to town and we find OPTUS cannot provide a service to us unles they had an infrastructue inplace. No using the mighty Telstr lines,...god forbid...!!  So we were forced to find alternatives and naturally Telstra was not in the running for this reason and the huge costs they were charging. We eventually went to Internode, who purchased from "T", and then sold to us at less than 2/3 the price from the owning company, with better benefits.  Fast Forward to NBN. Finally I now live in an area where I am fortunate to have FTTP, or is that unfortunate, because there are huge plusses and minuses. I automatically head for OPTUS, I know after researching for the final two months that they will provide the best value for money (I hoped). I sign up for the plan of the time with advertisd benefits, but they completely lose my Application even though they can tell me the day I will be connected. I wait home and no one show, a call indicates they ahve no record and so I must re apply immediately to make it happen. I explain I have correspondence with connection dates for this day but that is of no consequence, RE APPLY..!! Next up, my modem router arrives same day and so does Mr NBN, he fits the infernal, internal box and also helps me set up the OPTUS unit as he must ensure there is a stable connection. WooHoo, we are on NBN Fibre and it is fast, well fast compared to ADSL+.  I call back to tell them and they say I am not registered as a customer, I provide the details from my package and they re enter it all. Now the fun starts......the fully configured modem/router...isn't, so no home phone. Just over a week of calls on my mobile which barely gets a signal where I am located. Eventually we sort this issue.  Then we have IPhone connection issues, Tech support don't know anything, in fact they know less than I do. After 6 months I was advised to do a speed check, why this would affect only IPones is anybody's guess.  It did show that I was not getting my Speed Increasse I was paying for though, so I had to chase that up and this took at least three contacts before it was resolved. On the last contact I also asked about the deal that was supposed to be applied with my joining up, there was a $20 discount at the time I joined on my particular plan if I signed up before the end of the month. We are now 10 months into the plan, I have been paying $95 +$10 for speed increase, when it should have ben discounted by $20. I am met with open hostility when I state this and told no such offer existed. As luck would have it, I kept the original flyer and application papers, so I had to photograph it and email it to the person who was causing me so much angst. Eventually after saying I had joined after the promotion, which I had not, I did not qualify, which I did, ...they had to admit I was indeed entitled to this discount. Begrudgingly they said as from this date forward it would be applied...Whoa up there I said, it is now coming up to the twevth month since I joined and you are saying I can wipe off $240 of discount that I was entitled too, because you made a mistake. No, you can re imburse that and apply it to my account please. Again, with a very angry and abrupt attitude I was told I should be grateful as this discount does not exist anymore, so I asked for a supervisor. the story repeats ad the supervisor asks me to wait while she looks through all the conversations and emails. Finally, thanks me for holding, apologises for waiting and says it is all sorted. It is back dated to the start as it should have been done, the correct rate is applicable as from the next cycle and if there are any more issues on this account regarding this matter, to contact her direct and then she gave me her operator number. As a general Rule, I found that in almost every contact I have had with OPTUS operators, they are friendly, courteous, and very helpful. I just got a bad one that day. It has never put me off. Tech support is another story, and especially so when they know less than you do.  The worst indication was when escaleted to Teir 1 support, he was so baffled by my problem his last resort was to advise me to google it and hopefully there would be a YouTube video explaining how to fix it.
I ended up fixing all my problems by puchasing the newer Sagemcom AC model modem/router. While vastly superior to the standard 2.4ghz model, it still was only 1/3 of the machine any other is on the market these days.  The problem is, if you want that home phone, you had to have it and man was it a P.O.S. even when I tuned it to get the very best out of it.  I could plug in a non VOIP TP-LINK Router and immediatly see speeds increase by a 1/4 to almost the maximum available and consistently.  I voiced this many times to OPTUS, but they do not listen and after 2.5 years of troubled and poor performance from the equipment, I had, had enough. Out of contract, but feeling bound by loyalty, I tried one more time and asked if there were any plans for better equipmnet, or releasing the SIP codes so we could configure our own modems....It was a NO, on both fronts and dis-appointingly I ended my contract and changed to a new supplier.  The irony of it all is, this supplier uses OPTUS lines and infrastructure, gets even better speeds with a minimum satrt connection of 50Mbps unlimited, plus phone for $30 less than OPTUS ad $10 and I get all the calls I want plus O/S. Equipment is fantastic and they will help me setup my own if I choose to have something different.  They also limit the number of people per NBN connection, whatever that is called.  Am I happy, YES, but I also feel let down in a big way by OPTUS, as much as I feel disloyal too them for changing.  I wish they could see the issues that the have put o many people in, just by being pig headed and stubborn on a P.O.S. modem/router.  They have the YES CROWD, but fail to read the negative feelings of so many people who are having problems with the equipment.  I have proven the equipment was the biggest failing on the best infrastructure available, yet it falls on deaf or stupid ears.  No doubt, yours is a great story and the OPTUS people will love it, mine is a story of the trials and tribulations that so many have dealt with, a lot giving up and walking away very quickly, while others seek help froom ombudsman to resolve the issue.  Either way, it is not all roses and carnations.

Crowd Champion Davelew
Crowd Champion

Hi @Jiefu

Quite a tale and l feel for your frustration, it seems so often Optus can fail in their communication. As to their modem I needed to bridge to be able to use a different DSL addresses 

I am now connected and my blog will shortly be posted on my connection experience so please keep an eye out for it as I can't let the cat out of the bag now.

Just to assure you my blog was my idea and isn't in any way to promote Optus.

 

Dave

Crowd Champion Davelew
Crowd Champion

I meant DNS address not DSL. Must be my addled brain.  Too many wines at a very pleasant lunch at the Sydney rowing club. If you live in Sydney lovely trip up the river to Abbotsford on the ferry.

Frequent Contributor
Frequent Contributor

Not to worry Dave, as I said, there are so many helpful OPTUS people, I felt bad for leaving. I understand that sometimes people have good and bad days, we all do. I do not hold that against anyone and I sure as heck would not want to have to deal with the public and all the complaints day in and day out.  Nobody phones and says, "Geez, you guys are great, Thank you.!" It's all moan, complain and fix this or else. I do try to not be the person I would hate to talk too Smiley Wink and I always do the survey after and make a positive comment on the particular operator as much as possible.

 

I am very aware that your blog is not an OPTUS generated servant request LoL. I do like what you have written and it is pleasing to know that you, like myself have researched thoughtfully and thoroughly all the options.  OPTUS do provide some of the best plans and while I may have changed, I have steered my daughter to them for the same plan and reason you have.  She is very happy with the service and has a bit to learn, but I help tune their system and they are, overall glad they moved to OPTUS and the same package you researched. My youngest daughter is also considering NBN and she is also now looking at OPTUS but on a smaller scale, less needs.  So, as you can see, I still promote them.

 

As for living locale, I live in beautiful Sellicks Beach, in South Australia. although as I write this lot I am in hospital for some R&R from the human race. Sometimes I can go for long periods without issue, then other times, I have some dark days and my combat PTSD wins over. I don't leave the house and become a prisoner in my own home. When this happens my wife knows it's time for the Veterans Hospital and we get it organised. No wine in here unfortunately Smiley Sad hehehe.

 

Can't wait for your next installment, glad you have got your NBN too.  Enjoy, Jeff

Occasional Visitor Amoreme75
Occasional Visitor

Hi Dave,

 

Hope you are well and still sipping on wine at the Sydney Rowing Club ;-)

I too have been monitoring NBN offerings, Ozzie Broadband have some good deals floating about, with $20 discounts for the first 6 months which makes them an attractive option but after that 6 months, you get bumped up to Optus prices but no Fetch box.  I've ended up with the same plan as you as the mighty's recording capabilities are awesome as is its ability to play high def Netflix. 

 

I was thinking NBN prices may come down but I don't see that happening in the near future and it will be a little while before 5G plays out, so I have jumped on the 24 month plan to reasses how things are going in 24 months time.  No doubt it will be a different arena by then.

 

I hope your connection goes smoothly and you are up and running at full speed shortly (I have a couple weeks before I'm connected (leaving Tesltra ADSL 2).  Time will tell what speeds I get but I really don't need super fast downloads (the son is at gaming age just yet ;-).

 

One thing that gets me is Optus (or any provider) calling me and asking for my DOB, erm, no, how do I know you are who you say you are?  You called me, you should be telling me my details for me to confirm.  So I always call back.  Catch 22 really.

 

Happy wine sipping. Jiefu I hope the R&R is paying dividends, the cloud is lifting and you are able to head home to the wife soon.

Crowd Champion Davelew
Crowd Champion

Hi @Amoreme75

 

It is interesting many people I speak to keep coming back to the Optus plan with fetch.  

Part 2 of my blog will be posted very shortly so keep an eye out for it and you may be interested in my experience with the connection to NBN although sounds like it's too late for you to change your mind.

 

Dave

Occasional Visitor Amoreme75
Occasional Visitor

Never too late @Davelew, order just been placed and no installation date given.  Seems these days all telco experiences can be hit and miss.  One needs to keep all records, I remember signing up to an optus contract years and years ago, with waived connection fees and discounts promised online (I took screen shots when signing up which proved helpful as I never received an email with the details of the plan/deal I had signed up for.  Very sneaky as no trail of their promises anywhere).  Even when you chat with someone online, and request a transcript, it always fails (well for me it does anyway).  So I always take screenshots of everything (call me a skeptic).

 

I  have low expectations, just deliver to  me what I signed up for (hmm, or maybe that is high expectations?).  If I don't get what was promised, I have reason to leave.  Easy ;-) (well, as long as I can prove they have not stayed true to their promise).

 

Optus are doing really well with pricing (some of their mobile plans that pop up are insanely good deals) and I think at times they are a victim of their own success (look at the world cup fiasco..  Great product, in theory, they did not have the infrastructure to deliver.. Costly mistake.

 

Anyway, I am drifting off topic.

Crowd Champion Davelew
Crowd Champion

Oh you sceptic @Amoreme75.

Couldn't agree more with the mobile plans, I have just recontracted with their $35 plan.  Not only for the 10gb but for the 300 minutes of international calls.  My wife much prefers just picking up the phone to ring the UK than dialling through Skype or similar.

Please, it would be good if you could post your experience of connecting to the NBN either as a comment on this blog or on my new blog when posted.  I hope it goes well and if there are any issues it will help future customers know of likely problems.

 

Crowd Champion Davelew
Crowd Champion

If you have read thriugh to this you may be interested in part 2 of my blog

https://yescrowd.optus.com.au/t5/Blog/My-NBN-experience-with-Optus-Placing-the-Order-Connection-Day/...

New Contributor lili320
New Contributor

post your experience of connecting to the NBN either as a comment on this blog or on my new blog when posted   https://audacity.onl/ https://findmyiphone.onl/ https://origin.onl/

Frequent Contributor
Frequent Contributor

my experience so far

 

 

Thursday 27/11/2018

People Spoken to so far:        Prathibha        was happy with her offer

                                                Anthony S,      confirmed her offer

                                                Chris               rejected the offer (which I have in writing)

                                                Akasha            didnt do anything at all

                                                Shweta            confirmed offer (which I was happy with)

                                                Angel              rejected offer told me I need to be on a 24 month                                                              contract

                                                Ali                   (used car sales man - trust me)

                                                Roni                This time - something new - free? only first 3                                                                         month but have to pay for speed pack)

                                                Jyoti                transferred to Ismail

                                                Ismail              asked what definition he has for free - after                                                                         discussion he promised to waive for first 3                                                                         month the $30 for speed pack - promised to send                                                                         confirmation letter and to notify Shweta to                                                                         contact me tomorrow Friday 28 - confirmation                                                                         letter did not arrive neither did complain number                                                                        needed for ITO

 

Friday 28/12/2018                  Shail                promised that Shweta would ring back within                                                                         next 2 hours

 

                                                Veerabhadran Arard

                                                                        at about 18:00 after live chat with another Optus                                                                         person -- " Would like to confirm it you,   Initially once our      NBN                                                                is   active you  will under 24 months contract  after three months we will                                                                change to month to month without charge.

                                    You will only start paying for the  service from fourth month."

 

                                                Vin (Philippines)

                                                                        I tried explaining to him that first 3 month                                                                         free etc etc - he categoricl said NO - as soon as nbn installed I have to

pay                                                                 he then suddenly transferred me to       

                                               

                                                rupali            which did not have a clue what was going on  (not her fault) after the usual id check and problem explanation was transfered to  

                                                Udhav

 

This does not include the people which just transfered me after going to the id check and also does not include the "technician which insisted i am not with optus and hung up.

 Every time with each person (even if they just transfered me - i had to wait and do the id check and explanation of the problem again.

 

Optus reaction when i send the requested e-mail "

Sent: Friday, 28 December 2018 9:40:24 PM (UTC+10:00) Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney  was deleted without being read on Friday, 28 December 2018 9:45:06 PM (UTC+10:00) Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney."

 

sat 10:30 chat with                 diane on live chat - she ask me to send it again - i did

 

I have confirmation e-mail from Optus it only is good for proof that an offer to me was made which Optus declined with a new spin every time and sometimes just with no explanation at all. Optus will not even give me a complain number for the TIO. Since 27/12/2018 I have spoken to have spoken to 16 people - have been asked to send an e-mail which was deleted without being read on Friday, 28 December 2018 9:45:06 PM. (I have send the mail again as advised by another person from Optus) had lines in the contract which said "I had requested something for a mobile for an additional cost of $5 and something else (I forgot for what) also an additional $5 - I told him I did not have requested that at all and why should I pay an additional $10 especially as I don't even have an mobile phone!! - That was the end of that phone call (immediately after when I wanted to print that website with the contract I did not have any access to it anymore!!

 

well today is sunday 30/12 tomorow i will try again and see if i can get at least a problem number for the TIO

 

Crowd Champion Davelew
Crowd Champion

Hi @gerver

 

What plan was offered to you?

As far as I knew when looking at plans there were three.   

A basic NBN plan  $80

A NBN plan without Fetch and Optus Sports with a data speed of 40mbps $70

A NBN plan with Fetch and Optus Sports with a data speed of 40mbps. $90

Plus Speed Packs if required.

I received a reduction of $10 per month because I have a mobile phone plan witgh them.

 

Dave

 

 

 

Frequent Contributor
Frequent Contributor

Here is the e-mail which was sent to me

 

"Confirming that if you migrate your cable service on nbn with Optus we will give you first three month free service after that the plan will be $90.00 with unlimited data and $30.oo for premium speed pack and same fetch TV box and will give you $10 discount for six month. The monthly package will be $110.00 from fourth month

The number to call migration team to move on nbn is 180008381 Mon - Fri: 8: am - 9:00pm - Sat: 9:00am - 6.00pm

 

Thanks

Signed by an Optus team member.

 

I confirmed my understanding with another person Optus person

 

First thing migration team said it was not possible to do that without me going on a 24 month plan

I rang the migration team . The person was not willing to get me anything at all in writing (not even her Optus id) and was only interested in selling me a long term contract.

 

 

Excerpt from the live chat with Optus

 

Anthony S,  

Have you applied for the NBN service?

 

You,  

no I received the number in the mail from ........ - I have spoken to her at about 1:10 today

 

Anthony S,  

Have they confirmed the order with you?

,  

its just a matter of confirming my understanding - just to make sure there are no nasty surprises left LOL i did agree with the offer from Pratibha - just tose 2 open questins

no i have not contacted the migration team yet - first i like to confirm my understanding

 

Anthony S,  

Cool

I checked that your address can get NBN connection

 

You,  

its the second part of the mail - are there any other costs involved? and i am NOT on a long term contract but on a month to month basis

We already checked that

 

Anthony S,  

There is no other costs to move to NBN

You can move to the new $90 plan in a month-on-month deal.

There is no connection fee

You,  

no other follow up cost either (except the one i got in the e-mail on which i agreed)

 

 

Anthony S,

There is no other costs to move to NBN

You can move to the new $90 plan in a month-on-month deal.

There is no connection fee

 

You,  

no other follow up cost either (except the one i got in the e-mail on which i agreed)

 

,  

Anthony S,  

There is no other costs

 

You,  

yes we discussed those option its just it does not say so in the e-mail

 

Anthony S,  

With the $90 plan you get unlimited data , unlimited calls to standard local, national numbers, unlimited calls to any mobiles within Australia + fetch connect pack + 1 premium channel pack included.

You will see it in your bill

 

You,  

yes we discussed that and there is also an additional cost for the speed pack as shown in the e-mail

 

Anthony S,  

Yes, I have read it

I will organise the deal from my end for you with the discounts applies

 

You,  

i belive that all covered - i as just worried about hidden and extra cost which might hidden LOL

does that mean i do not have to contact the migration team?

 

Anthony S,  

Not to worry, there is no other hidden costs for you

 

 

---

Well and than i tried to get on the nbn LOL

 

I finally got on to another person who send me this e-mail

 

Hi Gerhard

"Confirming that if you migrate your cable service on nbn with Optus we will give you first three month free service after that the plan will be $90.00 with unlimited data and $30.oo for premium speed pack and same STD box and will give you $10 discount for six month. The monthly package will be $110.00 from fourth month And we will put you on M2M .... Cheers

 

 

SO my understanding by now is that at least 3 people from Optus offered my month to month ((M2M) first 3 month free than $90 unlimited data @30 for premium speed pack monthly cost $110.00 - $1- discount = 110 - Well some Optus people don't see it this way and gave tried to wiggle out of it and tying one spin after the other on it

 

 

And that is just a little part of it. Just let me know what you think of all that is it worth to persue it any further?

Crowd Champion Davelew
Crowd Champion

Hi @gerver

That seem plain enough. Have you lodged a complaint in writing with optus, not email?

The address is:

Customer Relations Group
PO Box 306
SALISBURY SOUTH
SA 5106

If you haven't send copies of all the relevant emails etc and by writing Optus do seem to take these things more seriously.

 

Dave

 

Frequent Contributor
Frequent Contributor

Not yet - someone from Optus promised to sort it all out and call me back - that was at 13:22 (its now 16:14 - i will wait till first waiting dauy in 2019 and go ahead with your sugestion - Thanks for that.

Frequent Contributor
Frequent Contributor

Not yet - someone from Optus promised to sort it all out and call me back - that was at 13:22 (its now 16:14)- i will wait till first working day in 2019 and go ahead with your sugestion - Thanks for that. or should i go straight to the TIO?

 

Frequent Contributor
Frequent Contributor

Well it's now Friday 4 Jan 2019 - I was still waiting for the return call promised on Mon. I made another Phone call today starting at 11:30 am and after about 1 hour was promised a return call. It's now 16:10 and I do not really believe I will get a return call today. SO - where do I get a complain reference number from the service provider (Optus) when the provider is dodging the question? What is a reasonable effort from me to solve the problem before lodging a complaint with the tio? (The problem started at Friday 21 Dec 2018 and is not resolved yet)

People Spoken to so far:        Prathibha, Anthony S, Chris, Akasha, Shweta, Angel, Ali   Roni, Jyoti, Ismail, Shail, Veerabhadran Arardri,            Vin, rupali, Udhav, Diane,             Pratik - (to some of those People i have spoken several times)

E-mail send -- twice - first came back as deleted without read second no reply at all.

 

Crowd Champion Davelew
Crowd Champion

Put your complaint in writing and Optus give you a complaint number.