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How much is mobile data worldwide?

How much is mobile data worldwide?

· By James Cridland · 2.9 minutes to read

This article is at least a year old

Data costs are important for podcasters, because they get in the way of listening to podcasts on the move; and important for internet radio broadcasters or streaming music, too. Google Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher all default to streaming podcasts (using your wifi or data plans).

There are plenty of websites out there showing really good deals for mobile data - but not very many people use them. Most just go with whatever their phone company offers them.

What we did

We found each country’s most popular mobile phone company, and on their website we looked for three SIM-only contract/postpaid plans:

  • The cheapest (aiming for 1GB)
  • A mid-range (30GB and unlimited calls)
  • A super-fancy (90GB and unlimited international roaming)
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We chose the above scales from what we have available in Australia.

Any “bonus” things that appeared to be special offers were included. We went for a 12 month contract where we could. We translated all the prices into US dollars.

Additionally, we’ve looked at the World Bank’s income-per-capita figures and given an equivalent of annual income.

These aren’t the best deals. They’re the available plans from the biggest mobile phone network in each country.

The plans

Australia: Telstra

  • Cheapest: $35 (1% of average annual income) - 30GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Mid-range: $35 (1%) - 30GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Super-fancy: $63 (1.9%) - 90GB / unlimited international calls, texts (15 countries), roaming (75 countries)

Canada: Bell

  • Cheapest: $80 (2.8%) - 4GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Mid-range: $136 (4.7%) - 20GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Super-fancy: $147 (5.1%) - 20GB / unlimited international calls, texts, roaming (2 countries)

United States of America: Verizon

  • Cheapest: $35 (0.8%) - 2GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Mid-range: $75 (1.8%) “plus taxes and fees” - unlimited data, calls
  • Super-fancy: $95 (2.3%) “plus taxes and fees” - unlimited data, calls, roaming (185 countries for 5 days, 3 countries included)

UK: EE

  • Cheapest: $18 (0.6%) - 2GB / unlimited national calls/texts/roaming (48 EU countries)
  • Mid-range: $32 (1.1%) - 30GB / unlimited national calls/texts/roaming (48 EU countries)
  • Super-fancy: $32 (1.1%) - 30GB / unlimited national calls/texts/roaming (48 EU countries)

Philippines: Globe

  • Cheapest: $11.50 (4.2%) - 1.5GB / unlimited national texts, Globe calls
  • Mid-range: $47 (17.3%) - 26GB / unlimited national texts, Globe calls
  • Super-fancy: $153 (56.3%) - Unlimited data / unlimited national texts, Globe calls / roaming (6 days)

New Zealand: Vodafone

  • Cheapest: $27 (1%) - 2.5GB / 300mins calls, unlimited texts, to 2 countries
  • Mid-range: $54 (2%) - unlimited data (22GB speed bump), unlimited calls/texts to 2 countries
  • Super-fancy: $54 (2%) - unlimited data (22GB speed bump), unlimited calls/texts to 2 countries - roaming $5/day extra

India: Airtel

  • Cheapest: $5.50 (4.5%) - 40GB / unlimited calls, 100 texts/day, and roaming
  • Mid-range: $5.50 (4.5%) - 40GB / unlimited calls, 100 texts/day, and roaming
  • Super-fancy: $7 (5.7%) - 75GB / unlimited calls, 100 texts/day, and roaming

Norway: Telenor

  • Cheapest: $29 (0.6%) - 1GB / unlimited calls/texts, roaming (48 EU countries)
  • Mid-range: $75 (1.5%) - 30GB / unlimited calls/texts, roaming (48 EU countries)
  • Super-fancy: $93 (1.9%) - 60GB / unlimited calls/texts, roaming (48 EU countries)

United Arab Emirates: Etisalat

  • Cheapest: $27 (0.9%) - 2GB / 200m international calls
  • Mid-range: $74 (2.5%) - 20GB / 750m international calls
  • Super-fancy: $272 (9.4%) - 100GB / 2000m international calls (no roaming)

Argentina: Claro

  • Cheapest: $12.50 (1.3%) - 1GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Mid-range: $51 (5.7%) - 15GB / unlimited national calls and texts, roaming to America and Europe
  • Super-fancy: $51 (5.7%) - 15GB / unlimited national calls and texts, roaming to America and Europe

Malaysia: DiGi

  • Cheapest: $15 (2.4%) - 10GB, unlimited national calls
  • Mid-range: $29 (4.6%) - 40GB, unlimited national calls
  • Super-fancy: $36 (5.7%) - unlimited national data/calls, limited roaming in 10 countries

Thailand: AIS

  • Cheapest: $10 (2.6%) - 1GB data, 100m calls
  • Mid-range: $28 (7.4%) - 28GB data, 400m calls
  • Super-fancy: $35 (9.3%) - unlimited data, 650m calls. No roaming.

Conclusions

Oh, Canada! Yay, Australia.

James CridlandJames Cridland is the Editor of Podnews, a keynote speaker and consultant. He wrote his first podcast RSS feed in January 2005; and also launched the first live radio streaming app for mobile phones in the same year. He's worked in the audio industry since 1989.

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