My mum has asked me to help her find a phone and internet solution. Looking around, I'm not really finding anything that really fits. Would appreciate advice...
The requirements are minimal. In short: functional, reliable and cheap.
Internet: mum hardly uses it except to check email and watch the odd Youtube video. Probably just as important is that kids, grand kids and friends could use it for homework and/or the odd Google search when they're at her place. In short 5 GB per month would be more than sufficient for cap; speed doesn't matter as long as it is broadband; objectionable content filtering ALA Maxnet would be a bonus.
Phone: a home phone is really desirable as mum wants to remain accessible for people who can't afford [long] cellphone calls. Probably wouldn't matter if it is VOIP or POTS - just as long the service is simple and reliable like a traditional phone service. She does have a "feature" cellphone (ie. not a smartphone - no data) which she uses a fair amount for txting, but I don't think she makes very many calls (estimate 300 minutes per month???).
Every popular phone/ISP company I look at - the Telecoms, Vodafones, Orcons and Slingshots of this world - have great family internet/phone deals. Typically $75+ for 30+ GB per month + home phone + [insert competitive differentiator here]. These are reasonable... but the internet cap is massive overkill and in general it is more than what mum wants to spend.
A $19 or $29 cellphone plan seems really attractive value wise. Not having a home line wouldn't be ideal, but I guess if somebody wanted to call her she could call them back with the copious free minutes they put on such plans these days. The bigger problem is mum is not very IT literate. I'm not sure that she'd be truly comfortable with such a solution: tethering to her laptop for internet, avoiding being stung for using too much data...
Comments or suggestions would be appreciated!
PS: Mods, please feel free to move the thread. It isn't strictly broadband... but nor is it strictly phone... and nor did I think it was right to put it in "off topic".