Remember where you were on this day, for today is the day that the battle to provide the cheapest mobile tariff with unlimited data truly begins. Virgin has just unveiled its secret weapon: Virgin Premiere, and it should have Three rather worried…
For the past year or so, UK network Three has been offering one of the best data deals going, giving it the monopoly on all-you-can-eat data. It’s ‘One Plan’ boasts 2000 minutes, 5000 texts and unlimited data, starting at £25 per month on some handsets. But now it’s not the only player in that space.
Virgin’s ‘Premiere’ plan has crashed the party, offering a deal that brings 2500 minutes, unlimited texts and unlimited data for £26 per month, or a frankly crazy £21 per month for Virgin Media customers. That’s pretty competitive.
While its true that, on the whole, most tariffs have gone from offering 1GB of data to around 500MB per month as standard over the past 24 months, it seems as though we’re now at the beginning of something of an unlimited data renaissance. But can it last? When we spoke to UK mobile network Giff Gaff, CEO Mike Fairman warned about the adverse affects that 4G would have on our data tariffs:
“The thing to think about with going into 4G is that it means there isn’t much of a difference between voice and text and video – it’s all just data. When you’re in that world, you’ll have one customer that might be using half a gigabyte, and another that might be using 50 or 60 or 70. If you don’t work out a way of charging differentially for those then it’s very unclear as to how you’re going to make any money at all.”
In other words: the advent of 4G will probably result in a tariff price hike, which means that this unlimited data battle could be short-lived. Our advice? Make hay while the sun shines.
Link: Virgin Media