3 recently announced the availability of “all-you-can-eat” data on their Pay As You Go (PAYG) plans. For £15 a month you get 300 minutes, 3000 texts and unlimited data. That’s great value. In fact, better value than the plan I’m currently on with 3; their £15 pay monthly SIM300 plan which gives me 300 minutes, 3000 texts and 1GB data.
Pay monthly has in the past always given you more for your money, but it looks like the tables are turning. When I queried this via 3’s Twitter account, I was told that pay monthly does have an ‘all-you-can-eat’ option – at £25/month (2000 minutes, etc etc)… Now, 300 minutes is more than enough for me, I’m not much of a talker (I work from home, I have a Skype subscription), but I do have an HTC Desire, which eats data for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Data is much more important to me.
I replied on Twitter, asking “So I would have to pay £25 to get AYCE data on monthly, or £15 on PAYG? Strange! (when comparing like for like at £15)” – their response was “You can’t tether on PAYG though.”
So there you have it – if you don’t mind not using your phone as a modem/mobile hotspot, and you don’t talk a great deal on the phone, then it really is a better deal to move to PAYG. Which I can’t help but find a little odd. As someone who has had several contracts with them, and pays monthly by Direct Debit, you kind of hope that they would look after existing customers. It looks like I’ll have headed from a contract, to rolling monthly SIM only (they couldn’t give me a better upgrade deal than one they give to new customers), to PAYG, and I’ll actually be better off for my usage patterns. Which is, again, odd.
So I think that this rather rambling blog post is a bit of a complaint really, in that 3 need to look after existing customers a lot better. They weren’t able to give me a good upgrade, and now their PAYG offering is better than what I pay for month by month. The next question is, will I stay with 3 when I look around for my next phone? They’d better try a lot harder to keep me.