A week or so ago I did a post about iPad data plans in NZ, and included some nifty wee graph of the various plans etc.

Well 2Degrees have gone and made that post redundant with their new plans, so here is is again, UPDATED.

There are some (new) assumptions that need to be made here which are all noted, and the whole 60/90 day expiry with 2Degrees makes it less easy to compare across providers, so I have done the basic use it all in month one option, along with a more sophisticated graph.

UPDATE 4th Aug 2010: I have fixed 2 errors already.  Voda was recorded as 500MB (should be 250MB) for $20, and, and 2Degrees was 15GB (should be 10GB).  All fixed now.  Thanks Reece and Brett for spotting these!

My assumptions (important, so please read):

  • 1GB = 1000MB (not sure if this is how telcos in NZ charge or not to be honest, but I have been consistent with this, so it will make very little difference).
  • All rounded to the nearest dollar.     X axis is always in MB.     Y axis  is in $.
  • XT plans are the Pre-pay versions (so you get the 10c/MB till you hit the cap)
  • I have just put in the pre-pay plans, as that way it’s consistent and fair (and less lines!).
  • I am assuming Vodaphone do allow 10c/MB for over rates (their web site doesn’t say, not that I can find!)
  • No allowance is made for any difference in part charges or min charges per connection (no idea if this makes a lot of difference or not!)
  • The graph shows a straight line line between each data point, which is right EXCEPT all 2Degrees plans, where it SHOULD jump up $6 every 50MB or $20 every 500 MB etc, and not a gradual progression as the graph shows.
  • It assumes you keep buying packs on 2Degrees when you run out.  In reality you get to use any unused data from that the next month, so the first two graphs are slightly unfair to 2Degrees just after each re-buy point (but the later ones try to compensate for that by spreading the data over 60 or 90 days.
  • No specials are allowed for – this is the ongoing rates the telcos charge (so the 2 Degrees paid for 2GB get 3GB is just shown as 2GB here, nor is the $10 discount for XT on contract shown)
  • It assumes you are in an area of 2Degrees Coverage (or else you need to ignore every 2Degrees col except the $6 one!).

Note: Click on any image for a larger view.

All plans – based on 30 day use it or lose it, up to 10GB

All plans – based on 30 days use it or lose it up to 1GB


All plans – based on average cost per month, factoring in expiry, up to 1GB


Plans 2GB or more – based on average cost per month, factoring in expiry, up to 5GB


Commentary (updated 4 Aug)

Any winner less clear cut now with 2Degrees in on things.  A reminder of course 2Degrees is only really an option for any moderate use if on the 500MB/2GB/15GB plans, and these are only available in ChCh/Welly/Akl and Queenstown. The 60 and 90 day expiry on the data on 2Degrees also is a MAJOR bonus, esp when you are a heavy user (2-3GB+ per month).  IN case you missed it, 2Degrres has a 60 day expiry on the 2GB packs, and 90 days on the 10GB.  2Degrees packs and expires explained here. All others are 30 days.  2Degrees is also the only carrier to allow you to just keep buying more of the same pack in a month (I checked this by calling them – yep you can buy a 2GB pack each week if you want – something you CANT do on XT or Vodafone).

I would say when you are on the right plan (for your chosen telco) the price diff isn’t MASSIVE. So for a few hundred MB it’s $20 or $30 (I know that’s 50%, but its only $10!), or its around $50-$60 for a couple of GB on all three. When it changes is when you go over that, or change your usage, and it can sting (for going over OR under).  XT is far better when you DON’T use it much for a month (the 10c/MB to start with, esp if you normally use a GB or two), and 2Degrees 60/90 day expiry is very handy if you top up mid month (the only one that allows multiple top ups through the month).  And remember to factor in coverage, and speed (XT wins hands down there).

If you go a LITTLE over a cap (eg use 501MB and on a 500MB plan on XT) the 10c/MB until it hits the next double up cap level (ie you get a further 500MB for $29.95, but once only) is both fair, and good value.    If you go A LOT over your cap 2Degrees is great value since you can just keep re-buying multiple top ups (the only telco in NZ to allow this – the other penalise massive over usage in a month, 2Degrees just says: Sure use some more at the same rate – much fairer!)  Also one should not underestimate the advantage of the 60 or 90 day expiry on 2Degrees.  If you are moderate use (say 750MB – 1GB a month) you can now buy a 2GB plan and use the data over 2 months (in effect $25 per month for 1GB/mth)  Fare cheaper than anything else available.

Personally, on balance, XT is still my pick (for my situation).  The $29.95 for 500MB or $59.95 for 2GB, combined with the 10c/MB until you hit the cap, and the 10c/MB if you go over it, and the $29.95 double up are all NICE things about the plan, but for me the clincher is the superior coverage and speed.  I would say for those living in a metro area (ChCh/Welly/Akl or Queenstown) who don’t move around a lot for work, 2Degree could well be the best option – but you just have to know the kinda data usage you will use in a month before hand (ie do you buy the $6 packs of the $20 ones type thing).   I have to say Vodafone is a poor 3rd (for me), for lots of reasons, but the main one is I just don’t like them any more and their customer service sucks, and their plans have no advantages over the others (at least XT and 2Degrees each has advantages and wee extras).

Raw Data

Raw Data – all plans, assuming 30 day use it or lose it (not a correct assumption for 2Degrees)

XT 500MB XT 2GB XT 4GB Voda 250MB Voda 3GB 2Deg 50MB 2Deg 500MB 2Deg 2GB 2Deg 10GB
1 MB $0 $0 $0 $20 $50 $6 $20 $50 $150
10 $1 $1 $1 $20 $50 $6 $20 $50 $150
50 $5 $5 $5 $20 $50 $6 $20 $50 $150
100 $10 $10 $10 $20 $50 $12 $20 $50 $150
500 $30 $50 $50 $45 $50 $60 $20 $50 $150
750 $55 $60 $80 $70 $50 $90 $40 $50 $150
1000 MB $60 $60 $80 $95 $50 $120 $40 $50 $150
2000 $160 $60 $80 $195 $50 $240 $80 $50 $150
3000 $260 $70 $80 $295 $50 $360 $160 $100 $150
4000 $360 $90 $80 $395 $150 $480 $280 $100 $150
5000 $460 $190 $110 $495 $250 $600 $440 $150 $150
6000 $560 $290 $110 $595 $350 $720 $640 $150 $150
7000 $660 $390 $110 $695 $450 $840 $880 $200 $150
8000 $760 $490 $110 $795 $550 $960 $1,160 $200 $150
9000 $860 $590 $210 $895 $650 $1,080 $1,480 $250 $150
10000MB $960 $690 $310 $995 $750 $1,200 $1,440 $250 $150

RAW DATA – With Expiry Dates.  Assumes even use each month

MB XT 500MB PP XT 2GB PP Voda 250MB Voda 3GB 2D 500MB 2Deg 2GB 2Deg 10GB
100 $10 $10 $20 $50 $20 $50 $50
500 $30 $50 $70 $50 $20 $50 $50
1000 $60 $60 $95 $50 $40 $50 $50
2000 $160 $60 $195 $50 $80 $50 $50
3000 $260 $70 $295 $50 $160 $75 $50
5000 $460 $190 $495 $250 $600 $125 $75

Other useful related links

Black and White Version: Even more choice – it’s good!

PS: Let me know if I missed anything or messed up any of the graphs!  I will fix it :-)


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