Ever since I've decided to move on without Vodafone, I've been looking out for a better mobile network which will give me the best possible deal in the market. As far as I'm concern, there are loads of mobile networks out there waiting to be explored.
If you have the time to have a walk in town, you would have realised that besides Vodafone, you have T-Mobile + Orange (They called themselves "Everything Everywhere"), 3UK and O2. In addition to that, one could also sign up for Talk Mobile if you head over to a Carphonewarehouse shop and Tesco Mobile (It is available in larger Tesco stores). Last but not least, one might have a chance to sign up with Virgin Mobile in certain high street stores which they operate.
Apart from signing up a mobile contract in shops, one could also sign up a mobile contract online irrespective of whether it is on Vodafone or not. The only problem is whether you have the time to look for the best network provide which suits you.
After searching high and low for a SIM only/PAYG deal, I have decided to sign up to a mobile network which is not mentioned above. I would explain why have I come to that conclusion. Before that, I would explain as to the reasons why I've not chosen the mobile networks above.
Let's begin with T-Mobile and Orange. As I've posted earlier, I have gone through many rough patches with them. The lack of data security awareness and the incompetence of telephone customer service left me without a shadow of a doubt that I would not set foot on those two networks again. In regards to 3UK, the network has left me with disappointment. No doubt that previously I had a few dealings with them but not anymore. This is because I have lost faith in them particularly in the way how they handle customer service complaints. I think four years of battle on the telephone is sufficient to justify my disappointment of them.
Honestly, I do not have any problems with O2 and Talk Mobile apart from the fact that O2's tariffs are more expensive than other mobile networks in the market. Talk Mobile, on the other hand, does not offer a good customer service. In fact, their customer service is the worst among the mobile networks in the UK (I have to stress on the point that this is only my personal opinion and no one has induced me to come up have that thought). Tesco Mobile, on the other hand, has very strict policy in anyone who is trying to sign up a mobile contract with them. In doing so, they are losing out to many other mobile networks in the country. They are one of the many MVNOs or virtual networks which runs on the O2 UK spectrum. I have covered in the earlier post regarding the superiority of the O2 Network at this moment to introduce the 3G 900mhz spectrum. It is not that I don't agree with their policy as they want to be paid at the end of the day and they would avoid non-paying customers at all cost. I am very happy to report that their customer service is the best which I could safely conclude that their service is as good as Vodafone Business Customer service.
Virgin Mobile, on the other hand, does not really think about retention of their loyal customer so I would not even bother about staying with them. Moreover, you might have a nasty bill at the end of the month so you need to be very careful with your bill. Apart from that, Virgin Mobile is quite alright. In fact, they have a special deal for all Virgin Media customers so if you are one of the lucky ones, why not try their service? After all, Virgin Mobile latches on to the T-Mobile UK network so it will have a stronger signal while you are outdoor as they run on a 3G 2100mhz spectrum and they have some pretty good coverage in part of the city.
Last but not least, I would also like to stress on the point that after looking through all the available mobile networks in the country, I have also come across ASDA mobile which runs on Vodafone UK and they offer the cheapest PAYG rates in the country! However, it is not as good as Giffgaff.
Giffgaff, as I have mentioned in the title itself, has connections or ties with O2. If you look into their company profile, their CEO has strong ties with O2. Effectively, they run Giffgaff as an MVNO in the country. One special reason for many people to use Giffgaff is that it is run by members themselves apart from the few top posts. If you look at their tariffs, it is THE cheapest in the marker! Moreover, it is a PAYG system and it does not need any credit scoring to get connected to their network! You only need to use £10 per month and you will be receiving 250 minutes of air time to all UK numbers with the exceptions of some special numbers but 0800 numbers are part of the free minutes; unlimited text messages and truly unlimited data! I have tried using Giffgaff for a few weeks and I have to give two thumbs up to them. However, they would not be able to get a perfect score because they still could not uplift over 18 contents to be accessed on my phone even after I have given them my particulars. That is a small sacrifice to make as I would be very happy to report that I will continue to use them! I don't think other mobile networks will allow users to make 0800 numbers as part of their plan without paying extra for it.
Well, what are you waiting for?
Update (13 February 2013):
It is understandable that Giffgaff has recently decided to change their price plan. This is true as they have introduced a new £12 tariff and amended the original £10 tariff. With the new £10 tariff, users will only be receiving 1GB of data but users can tether where else the £12 tariff will offer unlimited data usage but users will not be able to tether. The choice is yours.