In the UK, the times, they are a-changin’ as it seems like everyone who’s anyone has a virtual network to offer now. Sky is getting in on the party, Carphone Warehouse has their iD network, so do TalkTalk and Virgin Media and now, the Post Office is joining in, too. What was once known as the Royal Mail, the Post Office is now offering pay-as-you-go SIM cards, predictably offering better prices and a simpler, more basic approach to things. It’s an interesting move and perhaps one that might not take off with the younger generation (more on this further down).
The Post Office’s mobile offering is powered by EE, and there’s no 4G or anything like that here, which is a shame. Plus, this is a strictly pay-as-you-go affair, there are no monthly contracts and just like their parcel shipping rates, all the prices are neatly laid out on their new Post Office Mobile site. What sets the Post Office apart from the rest is that despite the fact you’ll be paying for what you use, you only pay 8p a minute regardless of whether it’s a landline or mobile number. Texts are 10p each, and 40p a message for an MMS picture message. Data however, is quite a bit more confusing, as you have to either swallow 10p a megabyte, or pay for a 30-day bundle. These bundles aren’t exactly great, with 2GB costing you £10 for 30-days, and 5GB costing you twice that much. Of course, this is not a network offering built for those looking to spend all day online.
This seems to be a pretty comprehensive offering from the Post Office, even though it is a little old hat, shall we say. The idea here is very much “pay for what you use” and for a lot of users, that might be what they’re looking for. SIM cards are free to order right now, and there’s a neat system for bringing your number across from another network. This is an interesting approach to things, and is more built for those that can’t use their phone all day at work and only use WiFi when online. Either way, competition is good to see, and it’s nice to see a UK fixture like the Post Office offering one more service.