So I get a letter from Optus saying my cable will be disconnected and I need to move to NBN. Ok I understand the big changes here - NBN is the new world - no issue with that. If I don't move, they cancel my service. But I now find out they will then charge me $350 for not moving to their new nbn bundle, which is 60% slower than current cable speed. When questioned, they state 'it is your choice to change to nbn'. After highlighting their letters I'm told, 'yes it will be' my choice not to change to nbn. Any success out there?
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Big changes indeed. Unfortunately Optus Customer service can give varying qualities of advice on your situation. To help clarify:
1) Optus won't disconnect you until you are physically able to be connected to the NBN
2) For Optus HFC customers Optus has made the decision to cease its HFC service ASAP rather than the 18 months NBNCo does everywhere else (Optus are entitled to do this)
3) You will likely find your area (what suburb BTW?) is now or soon NBN Ready - but this will likely not mean your house can connect to the NBN. This is because the NBN will be connecting all Telstra HFC customers up first (because they are already connected to the Telstra HFC cable and NBNCo is only using the Telstra HFC Cable.) In 1-6 months later a conduit will be run from the Testra cable to your house and then you will be able to connect to the NBN.
4) As Optus are the ones ceasing the service you are entitled to exit any contract without penalty. You shouldn't say you want to cancel the contract, just that as Optus are ending their service you wish to go your seperate way. Some Customer Service staff can say this isn't possible (incorrectly) others will say fine. Call back if needed.
5) You now have 3 options:
a) Do nothing. The Optus Service will end in 1-6 months time (you'll get more letters in the mail first).
b) Request Optus be your NBN provider. You must pick one of the two new plans ($60 or $80). Add $10 for free national phone calls and $20 if you want 100Mbps downloads (the default for the others is 12Mbps or 25Mbps max). You'll have to crunch the numbers on this but there should be no other costs because you are changing plan.
c) Decide on a new RSP. One of the great thing about the NBN is you are now free to contract any RSP and any plan. Personally I recommend a month to month plan as then if you don't like the service just contract to another ISP next month (keeps them on their toes).
Anyway, switching to the NBN shouldn't cost you (although it may be a bit more expensive than your old plans - this is because the NBN is cross subsidising the country and the city, so we HFC users (who have had it pretty good for a decade) are now paying a bit more to spread the bandwidth around.)