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Sky enters mobile market: how do its deals stack up?

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Written by: Paloma Kubiak
30/11/2016
Sky is making its first move into the mobile world with the launch of Sky Mobile in mid-December. As part of its offering customers will be able to keep any unused data for up to three years. But how does it stack up against rivals?

The TV, broadband and phone provider has announced it will enter the mobile market with a SIM-only deal in mid-December in a bid to “shake-up” the market.

Mobile phone users will be able to keep unused data for up to three years which they can redeem whenever they like within that time, plus have the flexibility to change their plan every month in case they need more of may use less of the package in the next month.

Sky TV customers will also receive free UK calls and texts with any Sky Mobile plan, and they can sync the plan with their Sky+ box.

The new network will piggyback off the O2 network and customers can choose one of three data plans:

  • 1GB for £10 per month
  • 3GB for £15 per month
  • 5GB for £20 per month.

If you’re not a Sky customer, you can add unlimited calls and texts for £10 per month or pay for calls and texts on a pay-as-you-go basis.

The Sky Mobile plans are 12 month contracts and at first, they’ll only be available to existing Sky customers – currently around 46,000 people have pre-registered their interest – before being launched widely in the new year.

The quad-play provider said it hopes to offer handsets from Apple and Samsung later in 2017.

How does Sky Mobile compare?

Ewan Taylor-Gibson, telecoms expert at uSwitch.com, said Sky’s first mobile offering is “very competitive”, as long as you’re already a Sky TV customer.

“Sky’s SIM-only set up is distinctly comparable to giffgaff’s. Both piggyback off O2’s network and both allow customers to dial their plans up or down depending on their usage. Mobile users love that kind of flexibility – it shouldn’t be underestimated as a perk.

“The key differences between the two are that Sky ties you in for 12 months, while giffgaff users can cancel anytime, and giffgaff also offers unlimited everything for £20 a month, beating Sky’s top package which delivers 5GB. But the fact that Sky is letting people roll over data and store it for three years is both unique and compelling. And for those who like to watch TV on the go, Sky TV customers taking advantage of this mobile offering will also get Sky Go Extra for free – usually £5 a month for its TV customers.”

Taylor-Gibson said Sky is catering to our ever-increasing appetite for megabytes but added that if the TV giant really wants to appeal to data hungry consumers, it may have to offer bigger data bundles.

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