Is NBN or 4G faster?

Joyce wants to know if she should be considering her 4G options rather than the NBN.

Is NBN or 4G faster?

Joyce from Brisbane wants to know if she should be considering 4G options rather than signing onto the NBN.

Q. Dear Drew,

I live in the Brisbane suburb of Rocklea, less than 10km from the city. I have been told I may gain a faster and more reliable service than the NBN by considering 4G wifi options. Is this true and, if so, which carrier offers the best service?


A. Hi Joyce,

Thanks for your email.

Living within 10km of the city is of great advantage when it comes to the systems in place for the NBN and you shouldn’t have any trouble getting connected to the NBN and receiving a strong connection. As you have mentioned, there have been reports of disappointments along the way with NBN, and that reaching a high level, consistent connection at times can be a hit and miss.

In 2017, Telstra launched a new 4G network on the world’s first commercial Gigabit LTE network with theoretical speeds of 10 times that of the National Broadband Network. The reality of such a 4G network depends entirely on how close your local broadcasting tower is to your home location.

The issue with using the 4G network as your main modem is the price of data in comparison to NBN. Currently, Telstra is charging $70 per month for 100GB on the NBN in comparison to $70 for 20GB on the mobile network with the Nightgear Nighthawk M1 modem.

If you require consistency in your connection and you aren’t using an over-abundance of data, then you should consider the wifi network. If you are in need of both data and speed, then the NBN may be your key.

I hope this helps!

Kind regards,



    To make a comment, please register or login
    the old bag
    20th Feb 2018
    4G network is way to expensive for what you get. we have to survive on 15Gb per month for $45.00 anything has to be better than that. we cant get adsl as Telstra has laid inferior lines in our estate and no ports are available either so the mobile internet is the only way to go.
    20th Feb 2018
    I pay Optus $60 per month for 200GB on home wireless broadband. The cost is pretty good.
    20th Feb 2018
    Yes - its the cost that determines 4G usage and NBN is unlimited.
    20th Feb 2018
    All very well for those in the bigger towns and cities.
    In the rural areas, best of luck getting anything reasonable. Parts of Tasmania, for example have trouble receiving radio, let alone mobile phone. TV? HD signal might be OK for the city but it is weak in many areas and drops out frequently.

    One step forward means about 5 steps back. Change rarely means improvement for us rural folk.
    Old Geezer
    20th Feb 2018
    5G is being used to run the Gold Coast games this year and from all reports it is fast as or even faster than the NBN.
    20th Feb 2018
    Is there anything OG doesnt know ?? ;-)
    20th Feb 2018
    OVO provide a pretty good service with 100 gigs for 69.95 a month they use the Optus Network.
    20th Feb 2018
    My unit in a retirement village was connected to fibre optic when it was built. Although I live in the metropolitan area, because some suburbs were done by a private company via contract we can't even be connected to Telstra for a landline. It took a few weeks and several phone calls before Telstra finally told one of my neighbours that. Before that they simply didn't arrive to connect a phone after making a few appts.
    20th Feb 2018
    We also can't have Telstra Internet at all.
    20th Feb 2018
    4G is sooo 2017! 5G on the way.......
    20th Feb 2018
    I pay $40 per month to Virgin for 25gb and unused data rolls-over (only to the next month). I never have a problem with speed, though I don't do movies or catch up on demand stuff. I am looking forward to better deals for wireless and 5G! I cannot afford the minimum $60 a month for NBN and also pay for all the connections as there is no telephone line in my rental, why would I waste the money, I only get 12 month lease at a time, even though I have been here over 10 years.
    ray @ Bondi
    21st Feb 2018
    when you consider you can unlimited data for almost next to nothing and the wireless internet 4g and soon 5g is a thousand times more expensive there is something fishing and it ain't fish

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