Indonesia has these GSM network operators:
- IM3 Ooredoo (a.k.a. Indosat)
- 3 (= Tri)
- XL Axiata
Additionally, there are providers on 4G/LTE only:
Smartfren is winding down its CDMA network and started 4G/LTE on own frequencies reaching[ 25 towns by LTE Advanced already. Bolt! started a LTE network based on TD-LTE in Jakarta and Medan. Both are not recommended for travelling. That's why they are included at the end of the list.
Net1 is a CDMA provider migrating to LTE now. It has a very limited LTE coverage in South Sulawesi, Ambon, Banten and Bali on 450 MHz (band 31) that is not compatible to smartphones. You need to buy a special Mifi or router and they only offer postpaid contracts. That's why it's not listed here.
2G is on 900 and 1800 MHz, 3G is on 2100 MHz. 4G/LTE has been started on Telkomsel, XL Axiata and IM3 on 900 MHz in Jakarta, Bali and other cities and from summer 2015 on all networks on 1800 MHz too.
Coverage and speed Edit
Telkomsel is market leader with the best coverage reaching 98% of Indonesia. XL Axiata and IM3 give good speeds on the main islands, while Tri is only covering some centers of the main islands.
So Telkomsel is the right choice for going to remote places, but it has the highest prices. XL Axiata and IM3 offer good alternatives on the main spots like Java, Sumatra, Bali or Lombok at lower prices. While Tri offers very good prices in the limited area where it has coverage.
OpenSignal has reported an improvement in Indonesian LTE speeds in 2017, but notes that average downloads of 7.71 Mbps are still low, when compared to some of its neighbours in the region. The last ‘State of LTE’ report for Indonesia concluded that in terms of the availability of 4G networks when accessed via smartphones, all network operators together in Indonesia already provide coverage of about 63%.
Registration and availability Edit
All SIM cards need to be registered in Indonesia, The old system by entering a ID no. through a SMS shortcode was discontinued at the end of 2015 as it led to many fake IDs. Nowadays you need to show a valid ID document at the point of purchase to an authorized dealer.
Stay away from their airports stores especially in Bali airport. They will only sell you huge packages with a steep surcharge there. In town in many stores, you will get a SIM much cheaper, though tourists will aways pay a small surcharge and prices for start-up packages can be higher in tourist places. But the surcharge of 2-5% for loading credit (called pulsa) on your SIM in many minimarkets all over the country is paid by locals too.
Telkomsel (SimPATI, Kartu As, Loop) Edit
Telkomsel has a market share of about 40% in Indonesia and is the only operator which is active in all provinces. It caters for around 173 million users in 2017 making it the 6th largest cellular provider in the world. It is 2/3 owned by the state through Telekom Indonesia and 1/3 by SingTel from Singapore.
Telkomsel has the best coverage especially on the outer islands, but can be slow on the main places. 4G/LTE has started on 900 and 1800 MHz in Jakarta, Bali, Bandung, Medan, Surabaya, Makassar, Lombok and Manando: 4G Coverage Map. In 2016 they announced that their LTE network is now live in 100 cities in Sumatra, Java, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Bali and Nusa Tenggara, as well as Papua, thanks to the deployment of more than 4,500 eNode B base transceiver stations (BTS). Access is only possible with a special 4G-enabled SIM card sold in stores where they have 4G coverage. Telkomsel presided over a mobile network totalling 146,571 base stations in 2017, of which 65.7% are capable of supporting 3G/4G services.
Their prepaid SIM cards are called SimPATI, Kartu As or Loop while their Kartu Halo is postpaid.
Their SIM cards are available at many stores and outlets at very variable prices. It can be as low as 2,000 IDR in special promotions, but normally start at 4,000-7,500 IDR. For tourists often prices of 15,000-25,000 IDR are charged and "businessmen" are reported to charge a multiple of it for an "all inclusive" service of setting it up. Kartu As and Loop are most often sold cheaper than SimPATI, but have higher rates for calls and texts and slower data. That's why SimPATI is recommended by most. For their 4G coverage, be sure to get a 4G-enabled SIM.
Top-ups can be made at the same places all over town where you see their sign. In Indonesia, every outlet charges a small surcharge of 1-3% for a top-up of 10,000, 20,000 or 50,000 IDR. This is usual in the country and no rip-off, as the top-ups don't include a margin for the merchant. You may also top-up your balance through supermarkets and minimarkets.
Default data rate Edit
Telkomsel has one of the most complicated price structures for data in the world. Therefore only a part of their complex pricing can be shown here. Three different product lines of SIM cards for prepaid are sold:
- SimPATI (the most popular and cheapest line)
- Kartu As
- Loop (their "youth line")
Default rate on all cards for data is free up to 100 MB/month, then 60 IDR per 2 kB up to a max. of 25,000 IDR. Beyond, data is shut off and you need to buy packages.
Now things get really complicated as Telkomsel data rates differ between regions and various places and ways to top-up. Generally you have two choices of loading data to your SIM: Pulsa or Flash.
Pulsa is data credit that can be topped up directly in an outlet of the provider. So every rupiah converts directly into MBs. There are different kinds of Pulsas. Here only the most usual form is shown of Pulsa sold in mini- and supermarkets: all given data is valid nationwide, but it's given out at local prices depending where you top-up. Always add a 2-5% fee for the vendor.
It sounds confusing and it is. All Pulsa doesn't auto-renew. It must be loaded again. It can be added to all three product lines Kartu As, Simpati and Loop for the same rate.
For their regional pricing Telkomsel divides the country into 12 different zones. Sumatra, Java and Bali are the cheapest. The further outlying the islands are, the higher the rate will be. The Maluku Islands and West Papua are the most expensive.
These Pulsas are sold in markets like 7-Eleven, Food Hall, Alfamart, Alfa MIDI, Indomaret, Circle K, Carrefour, Yogya Mart, Minimart, Yomart, Pepito, Griyamart, Cocomart, POS Indonesia, Maju Bersama, Kredit Plus, Multimart, Pegadaian, Superindo and others:
|Top-up||Validity||National data||Bonus (*)|
|10,000 IDR||7 days||40 MB||110 MB|
|20,000 IDR||7 days||200 MB||420 MB|
|25,000 IDR||30 days||360 MB||800 MB||1 GB Videomax (VM)|
|50,000 IDR||30 days||800 MB||1.5 GB||2 GB 4G, 1 GB night, 3 GB VM|
|100,000 IDR||30 days||2.5 GB||4.5 GB||5 GB 4G, 3 GB night, 5 GB VM|
|150,000 IDR||30 days||4.5 GB||6.5 GB||5 GB 4G, 3 GB night, 7 GB VM|
|200,000 IDR||30 days||7 GB||9 GB||5 GB 4G, 3 GB night, 7 GB VM|
|300,000 IDR||30 days||11 GB||14 GB||5 GB 4G, 3 GB night, 7 GB VM|
(*) The 4G bonus is only given out where there is 4G coverage. The night bonus is only valid midnight to 7am. Videomax (VM) is Telkomsel's video platform.
Then there is Flash. These are usual internet packages that are taken from your pre-loaded balance in IDR. Again, these packages differ according to region. You can activate a package by dialling *363# after you have loaded enough rupiahs. The two major lines SimPATI and Kartu AS differ in packages. Here are the packages for SimPATI according to the region where the packages are bought, but valid nationwide:
|min. Price||max. Price||Validity||Data||Bonus (*)|
|7,000 IDR||7,000 IDR||1 day||50 MB|
|15,000 IDR||16,000 IDR||1 day||400 MB||100 MB 4G/night|
|20,000 IDR||22,000 IDR||3 days||700 MB||300 MB 4G/night|
|20,000 IDR||24,000 IDR||7 days||300 MB|
|35,000 IDR||40,000 IDR||7 days||1.5 GB|
|55,000 IDR||66,000 IDR||30 days||1 GB||2GB Videomax (VM)|
|60,000 IDR||75,000 IDR||30 days||1 GB||2GB VM, 1GB 4G/night, 2GB chat|
|95,000 IDR||100,000 IDR||30 days||3 GB||2GB VM, 3GB 4G/night, 2GB chat|
|155,000 IDR||180,000 IDR||30 days||6 GB||2GB VM, 6GB 4G/night, 2GB chat|
|190,000 IDR||210,000 IDR||30 days||8 GB||2GB VM, 8GB 4G/night, 2GB chat|
|290,000 IDR||320,000 IDR||30 days||15 GB||2GB VM, 10GB 4G/night, 2GB chat|
(*) Videomax (VM) is Telkomsel's video platform, 4G data can only be used on their 4G/LTE network, night data from midnight to 7am and chat data for WhatsApp and LINE messengers.
Prices for KARTU AS cards are very similar, but packages differ and include Facebook use as a bonus instead of chatting. Activation is by USSD code *363# or on your account on www.telkomsel.com/infoflash. If you choose option 1 ("opsi 1") your bundle will be once-off, option 2 ("opsi 2"), your bundle will be recurrent. For the exact prices in your region refer to this site (which can be quite buggy).
Flash vs. Pulsa Edit
The advantage of Flash vs. Pulsa is that Flash can be booked anytime by USSD code as long as you have enough IDR balance, while for topping-up Pulsa, you need to go to an outlet or minimarket. Packages are valid nationwide, but their price varies according to region where it's bought. If you travel a lot, you should try to buy your Pulsa or Flash in a central island and bring it along to a more remote place.
More info Edit
- Check balance by *888# and data balance by *889#
- APN: telkomsel /or/ internet
- Website: http://www.telkomsel.com/
IM3 Ooredoo (indosat ooredoo) Edit
IM3 Ooredoo, a.k.a. Indosat, has become the 2nd operator in Indonesia. It's focusing on triple play and is mostly owned by Ooredoo, which rebranded it in 2015. It has a good coverage on the main islands of Java, Bali, Kalimatan, Sulawesi and Sumatra: Indosat coverage map at low prices. 4G/LTE has started in Jakarta, Bandung, Yogyakarta and Bali and is available in about 94 cities at the end of 2016 on 900 and 1800 MHz with speeds up to 185 Mbps: 4G coverage map. In 2017 it auctioned further spectrum on 2100 MHZ.
Their prepaid product line is now called Freedom Max. Former Mentari or IM product lines have been faded out.
Their Freedom Max SIM cards are available at many stores and outlets where you see their logo. They offer starter packs, which are often sold with a small merchant's surcharge at around 7,000 IDR plus the surcharge.
Data feature packages Edit
You can add one of these data packages in up to 4G speed or 185 Mbps, available in 42 cities:
|24 hours||5 MB||1,500 IDR||Harian1k|
|24 hours||15 MB||4,000 IDR||Internet3k|
|24 hours||50 MB||5,500 IDR||Internet5k|
|7 days||100 MB||10,000 IDR||Internet10k|
|30 days||1 GB||1GB 4G, 2.5GB night, 500MB apps||40,000 IDR||Internet40k|
|30 days||2 GB||2GB 4G, 4GB night, 500MB apps||60,000 IDR||Internet60k|
|30 days||4 GB||4GB 4G, 5GB night, 500MB apps||80,000 IDR||Internet80k|
|30 days||5 GB||5GB 4G, 8GB night, 500MB apps||130,000 IDR||Internet130k|
|30 days||8 GB||8GB 4G, 14GB night, 500MB apps||160,000 IDR||Internet160k|
(*): The 4G bonus comes on top of the regular quota, if you have 4G coverage. Night use is from 1am to 6am. Social media apps allowance include Facebook, Twitter, Path, WhatsApp, BBM, Line, Facebook Messenger, Gojek, Grab and Uber.
To activate, text code to 363 or type *123#. Standard rate outside of packages is 1.5 IDR per KB. Check package volume by typing *123# or text 'USAGE' to 363. All packages auto-renew. All unused data (not vaild for bonuses) rolls over to the next month, if you renew up to a total 100 GB and for up to one year.
You can upsize these packages above by these add-ons valid for 24 hours:
- 200 MB: 15,000 IDR, activation: Extra<blank>15k
- 600 MB: 25,000 IDR, activation: Extra<blank>25k
- 2 GB: 40,000 IDR , activation: Extra<blank>40k
- 4 GB: 60,000 IDR, activation: Extra<blank>60k
- 6 GB: 80,000 IDR, activation: Extra<blank>80k
To activate type *123# and select Super Internet > Extra package or text code to 363. Or extra night packages are offered only valid 1am-6am:
- 600 MB: 7,900 IDR, activation: Extramalam<blank>7900
- 2 GB: 20,000 IDR, Extramalam<blank>20K
More Info Edit
- APN: indosatgprs
- More info in English: http://indosat.com/id/personal
3 (= Tri)Edit
3 called Tri in Indonesia is now the 3rd provider with the lowest coverage, but the cheapest rates. It's owned by Hutchison Whampoa. It has a limited coverage only in some main islands. If you want to travel through the archipelago or to remote places, look elsewhere. Before you buy their SIM, check coverage here for 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE: http://tri.co.id/coverage .
Up to now 3 has been focusing its efforts on its 3G network rollout, deploying access to the 2,820 sub-districts, 307 municipalities in 25 provinces in Sumatra, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Java, Bali and Lombok. As of 2015, the cellco had extended its national footprint to 86% of the Indonesian population.
In 2015 Tri started 4G/LTE on 1800 MHz (band 3). In 2017 4G/LTE is available in 227 cities in 25 provinces on the islands of Sumatra, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Java and Bali and Tri auctioned further spectrum on 2100 MHz (band 1).
Their different prepaid SIM cards are available in a some stores (locator) where they have coverage for around 5,000 IDR. It comes with the same credit. Top-ups called Pulsa can be bought from 1000 to 100,000 IDR as vouchers or e-top-ups.
Be aware that a few SIMs offer specific benefits to the region it is sold in. For example, the Starter Pack Bali costs 40,000 IDR, offers triple credit per top-up (so a 1,000 IDR top-up also comes with another 2,000 IDR bonus credit), and comes with 3 GB data, but only 500 MB of that data can be used outside Bali (the other 2.5 GB can only be used in Bali between 12am and 12pm), and the bonus credit can only be used in Bali.
Data feature packages Edit
Data is on default is low 1 IDR per KB.
You can add data credit, called Kuota++. This can be bought be topping up with voucher *111*<Voucher PIN># or online:
- 2,000 IDR: 20 MB
- 3,000 IDR: 35 MB
- 5,000 IDR: 80 MB
- 7,000 IDR: 135 MB
- 10,000 IDR: 300 MB
- 20,000 IDR: 650 MB
- 33,000 IDR: 1.25 GB
- 45,000 IDR: 2 GB
- 85,000 IDR: 4.25 GB
- 150,000 IDR: 9 GB
Internet validity period follows the card’s validity period that can be more than 30 days. Credit top-up will automatically extend the validity period of the Internet and the card (IDR 1,000 = 1 day validity).
Alternatively, you can add these regular monthly data packs by typing *123# and choose Paket Internet or Packet Data:
- 500 MB: 35,000 IDR
- 1 GB: 50,000 IDR
- 2 GB: 75,000 IDR
- 5 GB: 125,000 IDR
For shorter periods they offer three packages:
- daily (until midnight): 500 MB - 5,000 IDR
- for 3 days (until midnight): 1 GB - 10,000 IDR
- for 7 days (until midnight): 5 GB - 50,000 IDR
These can be activated through *123*3# only once in this period and don't auto-renew. There are also Internet Sumo packs for heavy use. These can also be added by typing *123#:
- 1 GB per day for 14 days: 150,000 IDR
- 1 GB per day for 30 days: 250,000 IDR
Roaming offers Edit
3 offers discounted roaming to other 3 networks in Europe (UK, Ireland, Italy, Austria, Sweden, Denmark) as well as Vodafone Australia at a flat rate, but roaming in other Asian countries remains expensive.
- 5 days: 45,000 IDR
- 10 days: 80,000 IDR
Activate roaming options using *899#. Make sure data roaming is off before doing so, and make sure to select the correct network manually; usage on a network other than the designated partner or before receiving SMS confirmation of your data roaming package costs 330 IDR per KB.
More info Edit
- APN: 3gprs
- Website (English now available): http://tri.co.id/en/
XL Axiata (includes former Axis) Edit
XL Axiata is the 4th provider in Indonesia. It is owned by Axiata Ltd. and has about a 90% coverage on these islands: Java, Bali and Lombok. Furthermore, it covers cities on Sumatra, Kalimatan, Sulawesi and a very limited coverage on Papua. Where it has 3G, speeds are often faster then Telkomsel.
4G/LTE has started in Jakarta, Medan, Yogyakarta and is spread to other regions like Bali, Lombok, Surabaya and East Kalimatan on 900 and 1800 MHz: 4G Coverage Map covering 100 districts in 2017, which is expected to rise to 330 in the next years.
Their SIM cards are available at many stores and outlets where you see their logo. They offer two starter packs, which are often sold with a small merchant's surcharge called Super Ngobrol Baru for 5,000 IDR: including 2 MB 3G or 4G/LTE data.
Top-ups can be made at the same places all over town where you see their sign. In Indonesia, the merchands charge a small surcharge of 1-2% for a top-up of 5,000, 10,000, 20,000, 50,000 IDR or more or you buy one of their internet vouchers (see below). Validity is 7 to 360 days depending of the amount. To top-up type *123*<voucher PIN># <call>.
Data feature packages Edit
Default data rate differs according to plan and region but is 50 IDR per MB. They offer different types of packages:
- classical data packs called Hotrod
- Combo Xtra packages with a 2G/3G/4G allowance and a 4G bonus plus some voice
- Super Ngebut packages with a 2G/3G/4G allowance for am hours mostly
For 2G, 3G and 4G data up to 100 Mbps, they have these packages available.
- daily packs:
- 15 MB: 1,500 IDR
- 60 MB: 3,000 IDR
- 100 MB: 4,500 IDR
- weekly pack:
- 120 MB: 6,000 IDR
- 350 MB; 12,000 IDR
- monthly packs:
- 800 MB: 30,000 IDR
- 1.5 GB: 50,000 IDR
- 3 GB: 60,000 IDR,
- 6 GB: 100,000 IDR
- 8 GB: 130,000 IDR,
- 12 GB: 180,000 IDR
- 16 GB: 220,000 IDR
All Packages are on 2G, 3G and 4G and can be activated via *123#. Automatic renewal applies automatically at midnight. You can check your quota and active period via *123#.
These combo packages called Combo Xtra are sold all valid for 30 days:
|2 GB||4 GB||2 GB||20 mins||59.000 IDR|
|4 GB||8 GB||4 GB||40 mins||89,000 IDR|
|6 GB||12 GB||6 GB||60 mins||129,000 IDR|
|10 GB||20 GB||10 GB||125 mins||179,000 IDR|
|14 GB||28 GB||14 GB||140 mins||239,000 IDR|
Activation is by *123#. The 4G bonus comes on top of the regular data allowance. YouTube quota is valid all over the day and zero-rated at night 1am-6am. All packages auto-renew after 30 days. When internet quota has been used up, there will be a display of notification page or you will be charged IDR 1 per KB.
Instead of night packages XL Axiata offers "morning" packs called Super Ngebut:
|AM data||PM data||Validity||Price|
|200 MB||20 MB||1 day||5,000 IDR|
|2 GB||200 MB||30 days||25,000 IDR|
|5 GB||500 MB||30 days||50,000 IDR|
|7 GB||700 MB||30 days||75,000 IDR|
|10 GB||2 GB||30 days||100,000 IDR|
|15 GB||1.5 GB||30 days||125,000 IDR|
Activation is by *123# and AM hours are from midnight to noom, PM hours from noon to midnight.
More info Edit
- APN: internet
- Website: partly in English: http://www.xl.co.id/en
Smartfren (only 4G/LTE) Edit
Smartfren by Indonesian PT Smartfren Telecom Tbk is a major player in the country. It has about 13 million customers in 2016. It wasn't listed before as it used CDMA and EVDO rev.2 instead of GSM, but it has now migrated to LTE.
In 2016 Smartfren started the most widespread and fastest LTE in the country so far. It employs LTE Advanced that reaches higher speeds through carrier aggregation. But two rare frequencies are used: 850 MHz FDD (Band 5) and 2300 MHz HDD (Band 40). Already 5 million customers have been migrated to LTE.
Smartfren's coverage is on the islands of Java and Bali, parts of Sumatra, Sulawesi, Lombok and Kalimantan. It started 4G/LTE in 25 centers so far (coverage map) and reaches 188 cities in 2016.
They launched 4G/LTE SIM cards in 2015. Be aware that you don't have any coverage outside of their 4G/LTE. Voice & text require phones supporting VoLTE or installing Smartfren's own app. The app doesn't work well with dual sim card, and doesn't work when you're connected to wifi. Be aware that initial activation will require texting, so even if you don't think you'll want calling/texting, you'll need VoLTE/installing the app for activation. Furthermore, in any case, you need to check if your device covers at least one of their LTE bands. Alternatively, you can think of buying a Mifi router. You can get a basic SIM card for 20,000 IDR with the same credit.
Their SIM card for 4G/LTE is sold on the street or in their service centers (list). The 4G/LTE product line is called GSM for only 60 IDR, that need to be added by their plans.
Top-ups are available from 5,000 IDR valid for 7 days to 1,000,000 IDR valid for one year in minimarkets, online and through the MySmartfren app.
Data feature packages Edit
Default rate is 2 IDR per KB and 4 IDR per KB on Kalimatan and Sulawesi. These packages are offered:
|200 MB||500MB chat, 2GB top-up||30 days||20,000 IDR|
|500 MB||500MB chat, 2GB top-up||30 days||30,000 IDR|
|2 GB||5GB chat, 1GB activ., 5GB top-up||30 days||60,000 IDR|
|4 GB||5GB chat, 2GB activ., 5GB top-up||45 days||100,000 IDR|
|8 GB||5GB chat, 4GB activ., 5GB top-up||60 days||150,000 IDR|
|16 GB||5GB chat, 8GB activ., 10GB top-up||90 days||300,000 IDR|
(*) The following bonuses apply: chat bonus for WhatsApp, Line and BBM messengers; activation bonus once for the activation of a package, top-up bonus if you top-up at least 60,000 IDR for a month up to 12 times a year. VoIP through their app is zero-rated.
You can purchases bundles through their app or online . All packages auto-renew.
More info Edit
- APN: smartfren4g
- Username and password: smatfren
- 4G Website in Indonesian: http://www.smartfren.com
Bolt! (only 4G/TD-LTE) Edit
Bolt! by Internux is an Indonesian wireless broadband provider based on TD-LTE. It started in 2014 and has already 3 million customers in 2017. It uses the rare 2300 MHz TD-LTE (band 40) that is not covered by usual devices. That's why you are likely to buy new hardware for them. It only operates so far in the cities of Jakarta and Medan (coverage maps). Therefore it's more like a substitute for a landline ADSL-provider than a travel option.
As most devices don't carry TD-LTE band 40, Bolt! offers an array of WiFi hotpots (from 299,000 IDR), Smartphones (from 599,000 IDR) or routers (from 799,000 IDR). Some Samsung Galaxy phones actually include this band. For new phones Bolt! gives out SIM cards only called Thunder Bolt!
You get the SIM card and hardware in Bolt! shops (locator) and some partner shops. There and in many chain stores you can top-up credit (= Pulsa). Top-ups from 25,000 to 500,000 IDR are offered.
Data rates Edit
These data packages can be activated online:
|1.5 GB||30 days||29,000 IDR|
|3 GB||49,000 IDR|
|8 GB||99,000 IDR|
|13 GB||149,000 IDR|
|17 GB||199,000 IDR|
|55 GB||180 days||600,000 IDR|
|110 GB||365 days||1,200,000 IDR|
For social media they offer two packages:
- unlimited use of WhatsApp, LINE and BBM including voice and video for 30 days: 9,900 IDR
- unlimited use of Facebook, Twitter, Path, Instagram, WhatsApp, LINE, FB Messenger, BBM and Kakao Talk including voice and video calls for 30 days: 49,900 IDR
More info Edit
- For voice calls Bolt! offers a special app for Android and iOS called Bolt Talk.
- SIM card and plan management is done through another app called MyBolt!
- APN: internet
- Your data allocation rollover to the next period.
- Website in English: http://www.bolt.id