As network provider Three gears up to launch its 4G network, let’s take a look at what they’re offering and whether it will be worth the wait.
Three may have been a little slower than O2 and Vodafone to start their 4G network rollout, but their ambitious plans should have them caught up in no time. Starting in December, they plan to launch in London, Birmingham, Reading and Manchester, increasing their coverage to include a further 50 cities and their surrounding areas by the end of 2014. The ultimate target is to provide 4G coverage to 98% of the UK population by the end of 2015.
What Three Plans to Offer
Three may be arriving late in the 4G game but it is playing an impressive hand. The provider has promised to upgrade all of its existing customers who have a 4G ready device at no additional cost. When 4G arrives in their area they should be sent a simple free software update that will allow them to make use of 4G immediately with no need to sign a new contract or change to a new price plan.
This tactic seems to have won customer support, at least with the readers of TechWeek. A recent poll asking readers which 4G network they planned to use put EE in the lead with 33% of the vote, and Three second with 27% of the vote; fairly impressive given that they haven’t even begun their rollout yet. Despite their current lack of coverage, the lower price plans clearly appealed to TechWeek readers.
The other major selling feature of 4G from Three will be all-you-can-eat data. While other network providers vary their price plans according to the volume of data included, Three has declared that all customers will benefit from unlimited data so they aren’t worried about exceeding their limits or getting a huge data bill.
According to the Three website, “We want everyone to make the most of our new 4G network when it comes later this year. That’s why we offer everyone all-you-can-eat data. So you’ll be able to do all the internetting you love, as much as you like, faster than ever. Without worrying about annoying limits or nasty surprise data bills ever again.”
Price Plans from Three
Here are a couple of example price plans for those looking to sign up to Three ahead of the 4G rollout:
- £23 per month on a 24 month contract includes a free Huawei Ascend P2 16GB handset, unlimited data, 500 minutes, and 5000 texts
- £32 per month on a 24 month contract includes a free Nokia Lumia 925 handset, unlimited data, 1000 minutes, and 5000 texts
- £37 per month on a 24 month contract, and an upfront cost of £49, includes a Samsung Galaxy S4 16GB handset, unlimited data, 2000 minutes and 5000 Three-to-Three minutes, and 5000 texts
If you’re willing to wait a while for your 4G connectivity, Three could be the best choice for good value. All you need is a 4G ready device on an existing price plan from Three, and when 4G arrives in your area you’ll get upgraded at no additional cost.