Compare data services

Compare free and charged data services

There are a number of ways to access ABS data, in addition to data available on the website:

  • this information will help you choose the best data products or services for you
  • find out which products are free
  • not all topics are available in all data services

Free data services

TableBuilder (free and charged options)
  • create, save and download your own tables, maps and graphs using many topics (Census Basic and Businesses in Australia are free)
Census products
  • QuickStats provides summary information about people, families and dwellings, comparing very small statistical areas (SA1) to state and national levels
  • Community profiles are comprehensive statistical pictures for small areas (SA2), including time series profiles
  • DataPacks are designed for loading detailed Census information into your database or system, comparing community characteristics and time series
Data by region
  • region and local area data on population, economy, income, education and health using an interactive map
Data Explorer
  • interactive online tool that presents data in a searchable, flexible and dynamic way, with user interface and API options

Topics for free data services

Show all

 TableBuilderCensus productsData by regionData Explorer
Census
 Persons
Families 
Dwellings 
Economy
 Building approvals  
Businesses 
Labour
 Earnings and work hours 
Employment and unemployment 
Industry
 Agriculture   
Building and construction  
Mining   
Retail and wholesale  
Technology and innovation  
Tourism and transport
People
 Population
Migrants
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
Crime and justice    
Education 
Housing and homelessness
Health
 Health conditions 
Disability, ageing and carers 
Health services 
Mental health   
Snapshots of Australia
 BLADE    
MADIP    
Regional statistics

Features of free data services

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 TableBuilder
(free and paid options)

Census products

Data by regionData Explorer
Self service or ABS provided serviceSelf-serviceSelf-serviceSelf-serviceSelf-service
Data level of detailDetailedBroad-detailedDetailedDetailed
Data outputAggregate dataAggregate dataAggregate dataAggregate data
Output timingImmediateImmediateImmediateImmediate
Statistical skills requiredIntermediate usersAll levelsAll levelsAll levels
PlatformOnline systemWebsiteWebsiteWebsite and API
PrerequisitesConditions of useNoneNoneNone
How to get accessRegister in Registration Centre

QuickStats
Community profiles
DataPacks

Data by regionData Explorer
Further helpTableBuilderCompare Census products Web user guide
API user guide

Glossary of terms used in this table 


Charged data services

TableBuilder (free and charged options)
  • create, save and download your own tables, maps and graphs using many topics

  • create your own custom data variables and large tables

MicrodataDownload (basic microdata)
  • unit record data about people, households or businesses that can be downloaded for statistical analysis in your own environment, such as modelling
  • highly confidentialised data items, usually provided in ranges or broad groupings
DataLab (detailed microdata)
  • analyse highly detailed microdata within the secure DataLab, using statistical software including R, SAS, Stata and Python
  • all output is cleared by ABS before being released to you
Information consultancy
  • customised aggregate data tailored to meet your needs
  • ABS provided service
Data integration
  • customised integrated microdata, such as MADIP, BLADE or your own organisation's data
  • ABS provided service

Topics for charged data services

Show all

 TableBuilderMicrodataDownload (basic microdata)DataLab (detailed microdata)Information consultancyData integration
Census
 Persons
Families
Dwellings
Economy
 Building approvals  
 Businesses
Labour
 Earnings and work hours
Employment and unemployment
Industry
 Agriculture  
Building and construction  
Mining  
Retail and wholesale     
Technology and innovation  
Tourism and transport 
People
 Population
Migrants
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
Crime and justice 
Education
Housing and homelessness
Health
 Health conditions
Disability, ageing and carers
Health services
Mental health  
Snapshots of Australia
 BLADE   
MADIP   
Regional statistics 

Explanations of terms used in this table


Features of charged data services

Show all

 TableBuilderMicrodataDownload (basic microdata)DataLab (detailed microdata)Information consultancyData integration
Self-service or ABS provided serviceSelf-serviceSelf-serviceSelf-serviceABS provided serviceABS provided service

Indicative cost*

Annual subscription

$1,340 per data series per organisation

$2,670 Census TableBuilder Pro per organisation

Annual subscription

$4,350 per organisation

$4,730 standard fee per new project

Additional charges for non-standard access

Minimum charge $600 per request

From $2,310 (assembly of two existing simple MADIP datasets)

From $52,910 (new dataset linked to MADIP)

From $17,930 (new dataset linked to BLADE)

Data level of detailVery detailedBroad rangesVery detailedCustomisedVery detailed
Data outputAggregate dataMicrodataMicrodataAggregate dataMicrodata and aggregate data
Output timingImmediateImmediateOutput cleared by ABS before release in 1-2 working days1-8 weeks2-6 months
Statistical skills requiredIntermediate usersAll levelsAdvanced usersAll levels

Advanced users (microdata)
All levels (aggregate data)

PlatformOnline systemDownload to your own environment in SAS, SPSS, Stata or CSVOnline system using R, SAS, Stata, PythonEmailed or securely transferred to youAccess in DataLab (microdata)
Emailed or securely transferred to you (aggregate data)
PrerequisitesConditions of useConditions of use
Responsible officer undertaking
Safe researcher training
Project and data custodian approval
Conditions of use
Declarations and undertakings
Statistical skills
NoneSafe researcher training
Project and data custodian approval
Conditions of use
Declarations and undertakings
Statistical skills
How to get accessRegister in Registration Centre
Email microdata.access@abs.gov.au to subscribe
Register in Registration Centre
Email microdata.access@abs.gov.au to subscribe
Register in Registration Centre
Email data.services@abs.gov.au for MADIP and BLADE projects
Email microdata.access@abs.gov.au for all other DataLab projects
Information consultancy requestEmail data.services@abs.gov.au
Further helpTableBuilderMicrodataDownload
Responsible use of microdata guide

DataLab
Responsible use of microdata guide

Information consultanciesData integration services

Glossary of terms used in this table

* Further information about costs:

  1. Costs shown are GST inclusive and indicative. GST is not applicable for some clients.
  2. The ABS/Universities Australia Agreement provides a range of ABS products and services including microdata to members of participating Australian universities. Students, staff and researchers at participating universities will not be invoiced for TableBuilder and MicrodataDownload, which are fully covered by the agreement. Some DataLab access charges apply but have been subsidised under the agreement. 
  3. Detailed pricing information for each data service:

Geographies in free and charged products

You can compare the levels of geography that are available in each product or system. Most datasets provided by the ABS relate to the whole of Australia, but may also contain geographic data items such as state or territory, as a characteristic of the record of interest. ABS uses the Australian Statistical Geographic Standard (ASGS), which includes both ABS structures (such as Statistical Areas (SA), mesh blocks and remoteness) and non-ABS structures (such as suburb or local government area (LGA)). 

Not all datasets within a system have the same geographic variables or level of detail. Check data item lists in Microdata and TableBuilder topics to confirm the geography for the dataset you are interested in.

 
  • TableBuilder
  • DataLab
  • Information consultancy
  • Data integration
Census productsData by regionData ExplorerMicrodataDownload
State/Territory
Greater capital city
Remoteness area
SA4 
SA3 
SA2  
SA1   
Mesh block    
Local Government Area (LGA) 
Suburb   
Postcode   
Socio economic index for Australia (SEIFA)  

Glossary

Show all

Data output

Data and output can be in either aggregate form (such as tabular data) or microdata (unit records):

  • Aggregate data is produced by grouping information into categories and combining values within these categories, for example, a count of the number of people of a particular age (obtained from the question ‘In what year were you born?’). Also referred to as tabular data or macrodata, aggregate data is typically presented in tables.
  • Microdata is a dataset of unit records where each record contains information about a person or organisation. This information can include individual responses to questions on surveys, censuses or administrative forms.

Level of detail

Data services are provided in different levels of detail, so it is important to check that the service will meet your needs:

  • broad ranges - limited data items may be included, data items may be provided in groups, such as 5 or 10 year age ranges, broad geographies only may be included, such as state/territory and capital city/balance of state
  • detailed - more data items may be included, data may be provided in single values, or finer ranges, finer geographies may be included, such as statistical areas, local government areas and suburbs or postcodes
  • very detailed - many data items may be included, data may be provided in single values, such as individual income amounts, very fine geographies may be included, such as mesh block level
  • customised - finer detail for some data items may be offset by broader detail for other data items, in order to provide you with the level of detail you need for your request

Output timing

Some data services allow you to view your output immediately, and are available for you to use at any time of day. Other services, such as DataLab, you need to wait for an ABS staff member to clear your output before it is provided to you. For data services that are not self-service, such as Information consultancies or Data integration services, the ABS will create your output, and then provide it to you. The creation process can take several weeks or months for complex requests.

Platform

Data services are provided in various forms such as:

  • ABS website - you can access datasets or information directly from a web page
  • online system - you log into a system from a web page via a user interface, where the system is hosted on a secure server
  • API - you use an Application Programming Interface (API) from your environment to access a system using machine to machine interaction
  • email or secure transfer - if ABS is providing your output to you, we will let you know how the data will be sent to you

Self-service/ABS provided service

Some data services are available immediately, and can be used at any time of the day. In other cases you may need to contact the ABS first to arrange access, but once you have been approved, the service is usually available 24 hours/7 days. Other services are provided by the ABS, so you will need to specify your needs, then allow time for the ABS to complete the work before you receive your output.

Statistical skills 

All ABS data requires some statistical understanding to interpret what the data means:

  • all levels - data services that are designed to get you started, or to be used by intermediate or advanced users to complement more complex services
  • intermediate - some statistical training or experience needed to use these services, such as TableBuilder
  • advanced - you need to have several years of statistical training or experience to use these services, such as DataLab