Because we sell 3 different Business DSL networks we regularly get asked what's the difference? Well there is quite a bit of difference in price, speed, coverage and quality between the Australian SHDSL networks and here we explain what the differences are and why they matter.
One thing that is equal is that all our Business SHDSL plans have unlimited data downloads with no shaping and are fully supported with Australian based staff.
Telstra Business DSL has coverage at 1850 exchanges, AAPT IP Line SHDSL has coverage at 350 exchanges and Soul EFM at 250 exchanges. If you are in a Metro area chances are you will have choice of networks. If located outside a Metro area chances are you will have a choice of 1 - Telstra Business SHDSL. So Telstra is the clear winner in terms of coverage.
The winner here is AAPT with 100MB/100MB in certain locations. Next is Soul with a max speed of 20mb/20mb and then Telstra with 10mb/10mb ...... but outright speed is not it's all cracked up to be. All speeds are theoretical maximums and only Telstra Dedicated SHDSL and AAPT give any guarantee on achieving anything like the theoretical maximum. AAPT SHDSL Guarantee a minimum 25% of available bandwidth, Soul EFM gives no guarantees around bandwidth. With both Telstra Dedicated SHDSL & AAPT connections you will be given a speed guarantee before connection that will be very close to the advertised speed. With both Telstra Business DSL & AAPT SHDSL connections your the only user of the connection so the service isn't subject to traffic fluctuation as a shared connection would be. Soul simply advertise best effort so there is no bandwidth guarantee.
No doubt Soul SHDSL represents great value but with SHDSL you pay for what you get. For example we would not recommend Soul SHDSL for any real time apps such and VoIP or Video conferencing because the quality of the service cannot be guaranteed. AAPT also represents great value and comes with service guarantees. Telstra is the most expensive but also the highest quality network we sell. When you compare price of a Telstra 10mb/10mb with an AAPT 50mb /50mb and take into account the comments made under the speed heading above, Telstra can actually end up being cheaper for a similar speed but higher quality service.
Telstra SHDSL is the clear winner in this category when we include service availability, fault response times,fault restoration times & actual service performance. AAPT SHDSL comes close second in the areas of service availability, fault response times and restoration times but in the key area of actual service performance it only guarantees 25% of available bandwidth. Soul EFM SLAs are basically we will do our best but don't ask hold us to a response or restoration time because we can't give you one.
SHDSL Installation lead time
Telstra is typically 17 days install lead time in metro areas while AAPT & SOUL offer 30 days install time.
So to sum thins up, all is not as simple as judging a service purely based on advertised speeds. There are many factors that should be considered before selecting your SHDSL network in Australia.