Best Telstra phone: 5 we recommend

Here's the cream of the crop


Telstra has been making some big changes to its network over the past few months. From massively improving the bundled data on its plans to killing off excess data fees with automatic top-ups, Telstra has drastically improved its offerings.

And it's not just on the value front either. There's also the launch of its 4GX network last year, and the promise of LTE-A speeds of up to 450Mbps in the future.

Now with family data plans and the ability to upgrade your smartphone every 12 months when you're on a 24-month plan, it's time we took a look at which handset you should choose when you wander into the Telstra shop.

Compared with its competitors, Telstra's range is quite small. Traditionally, Telstra has been very selective with which OEM partners it works with and it tends only to take on the big name products. Though in our list, you'll also see an exclusive that you won't find on any other network.

Samsung Galaxy S6

Samsung Galaxy S6

Pound for pound, the Samsung Galaxy S6 is probably the best phone you can buy right now.

Samsung has taken on board a lot of the criticisms the world had with the Galaxy S5, from build quality to bloated, useless features, and streamlined them for the Galaxy S6.

Available in three different capacities, the Galaxy S6 is a powerhouse of a phone with a great camera, amazing screen and a feature list that makes previous Galaxy phones blush from embarrassment.

Telstra plans for the 32GB Galaxy S6 start at $81 a month on the $55 Go mobile plan, while you can grab a handset for $0 on a $95 plan over 24 months

Apple iPhone 6 Plus

iPhone 6 Plus

Few "best phone" lists would be complete without the iPhone, and compared with the available offering at Telstra, the iPhone 6 Plus definitely deserves to be here.

Apple's decision to supersize its iconic iPhone brand isn't for everyone, but those that love the 6 Plus' 5.5-inch screen really love it.

Throw in the fact that it incorporates optical image stabilisation, and the benefits of iOS 8, and you've got yourself a pretty stellar offering.

Telstra will make you pay a premium for that extra screen real estate though. To get the phone on a plan, you're looking at paying at least $94 a month for the 16GB phone.

If you want the phone without handset repayments, you'll need to jump on the $195 a month Premium Mobile Plan. That does include 16GB of data a month though, which is something.

HTC One M9

HTC One M9

This year saw Samsung overtake HTC, claiming the Android throne with its stunning S6 handset.

But Samsung's particular take on Android isn't for everyone, and for those put off by the South Korean firm's fondness for bloatware, HTC has delivered another excellent handset.

For Telstra customers, the HTC One M9 is a reasonably priced option, available on plans starting from $73 per month.

The entry level plan only includes 1GB of data, which is certainly on the slim side, but customers have the added bonus of choosing between a 6-month Presto subscription, 12-month AFL Live Pass, or 12-month NRL Digital Pass.

Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

Forget the fact that Sony releases a flagship every six months for a second. The fact is that Sony's last Xperia handset brought with it not just an incremental update, but a stellar miniature version in the form of the Z3 Compact.

Seriously, despite the fact it has a lower resolution that the full sized-model, this little pocket rocket delivers the same 20.7MP camera, plus Sony exclusive features like Playstation Remote Play.

Plus, the smaller 4.6-inch screen also makes it a bit cheaper than its full sized brother, which is always an appealing selling point.

Telstra offers the Xperia Z3 compact for $0 up front on a $95 Go Mobile Plan, which includes 6GB of data every month.

Blackberry Classic

Blackberry Classic

For the vast majority of people, the Blackberry Classic is just simply irrelevant. The company that staked its success on its enterprise-grade security has struggled in a post-iPhone world.

But the Blackberry Classic is not a bad device. It has plenty of really useful features to appeal to its clientele – namely, corporate types who live and breathe typing emails on a tactile keyboard.

For Telstra customers, the Blackberry Classic is a reasonably priced option, available for $0 on a $70 Go Mobile plan.

That includes 2.5GB of included data which is a bit on the compact side for a device designed to send and receive data every minute of every day. But for the type of person who wants a Blackberry, that's easily overlooked.