I’m thinking about killing my UK operator accounts

For quite a while now I’ve been wondering what to do about my mobile accounts.

This is roughly how my UK operator account structure looks:

Vodafone
- 6 lines, including my primary mobile phone number
- Includes: The car phone SIM, 2 BlackBerries, iPad 2
- Approx £150-200 per month

Orange
- 1x iPhone 4, £35/month

o2
- 1x iPhone 3, £35/month
- Yeah, I REALLY need to do something about that. The SIM is sitting in some old Windows Phone at the moment.
- 1x BlackBerry connection, £15/month. I haven’t used this for about 4 years, if memory serves.

Three
- 1x iPhone 4S, £35/month
- 1x MiFi deal, £10/month

All told that’s about £315ish a month. It’s often at £500 because I’m usually roaming and doing stupid things with Vodafone.

But that’s a committed spend of around £300 a month.

It’s a price I pay for you, dear reader.

The underlying concept being that if you want to try stuff, it’s good to have proper contract-level SIMs you can play with.

Back in the day, when operators actually did stuff that was “new” on a regular basis, it was thoroughly useful to have accounts with them. Further, it was better to have — as I say — contract accounts, rather than SIM-only or pay-as-you-go. Some services, especially test ones, didn’t play nicely with PAYG.

Fast forward to today and I can’t avoid thinking this spend is totally pointless.

WHY do I have an O2 account — TWO O2 accounts — when I never bother using it? It’s just-in-case.

Just in case of what?

I suppose in the case of O2, that’s an exception. Telefonica is doing innovative stuff. I was able to use my O2 SIM to test with BlueVia, for example.

But it would have worked with a tenner-a-month SIM.

Or even a PAYG.

I think it’s time to cull my operator accounts.

I shall begin tomorrow.

My Orange one has a few more months to go before I can kill it. I might do what I did with Three and simply phone up and pay the money to terminate there and then, then flog-the-phone to cover the cost.

I’m ok with Three. Both accounts are working ok for me at the moment.

O2: Well the BlackBerry account can go immediately. I haven’t used that for donkey’s years. And as for the £35/month one… I was going to use that for an iPad lease. Turns out they’re not doing that. I was considering buying the iPhone 4S on lease through that account too. I don’t know. I think I might kill the BlackBerry and move the contract to a pay-monthly tenner-a-month deal.

The sad reality here is that I don’t even know if I’ll use that. Perhaps I should just end both.

Vodafone: Well, I’ve been paying well over the odds with them for quite a long time. I think 3 or 4 of the lines are completely out of commitment. There’s no need for me to have a car phone SIM on £30-something per month. We hardly ever use it. Likewise with the 3G dongle from Vodafone — I never use that either.

Yeah. Lots to clean up.

(I just looked at my Vodafone account. I’ve 7 lines. 5 are out of commitment! Deary me. And for the sake of accuracy, my last bill with Vodafone was a highly reasonable £271 including VAT. Not bad considering there are 7 lines.)

It’s a sad day when I can’t really see any value in keeping particular operator accounts :|

  • http://invalid.name/ DanLane

    We should talk!

  • Barry-Jon

    There really isn’t much differentiation now is there… They’re barely even keeping with the basics.  Femtocells or some other viable solution to the problem of home/indoor coverage should be ubiquitous, but it’s not.  O2 have their priority rewards, which is supposed to inspire loyalty and includes spending on all your mobile phones as well as your home phone and broadband.  But not your iPad SIM for some reason I really just can’t figure out at all.  I have my own iPad, I just want a SIM for it.  I thought I may as well put them all on the one account and add to my spend with O2, but no, they don’t want to know.  It’s PAYG only for iPad with O2.  Why bother?  May as well diversify and have one on O2 and another on tbd as there seems to be no benefit to having them on the one.  I’m thinking Orange – get my Orange wednesdays and all that lark.   Is there really any reason to choose one over another?

  • http://twitter.com/rayleee Raymond Lee

    I’ve recently cancelled three contracts, two of them with O2 and one with Orange for pretty much the same reasons. I hung onto the O2 for way to long more to do with some work I was doing with O2 but for various reasons see no reason to keep them. The Orange was a hangover from, again, doing work with Orange. 

    Now, I have 5 Vodafone numbers and one Three. The Three is purely for the MiFi. With the VF numbers, I have moved three to a a SIM only deal at £13/mth and given two to my teenage sons and one to my partner who does no understand my obsession with Smartphones and is very happy with her Nokia C3-01! 
    As a result my monthly spend on mobile has come down from £200 to around £90.00 per month so more than happy with that. 

  • http://www.mobileindustryreview.com Ewan

    Today!

  • http://www.mobileindustryreview.com Ewan

    Excellent points!

  • http://www.mobileindustryreview.com Ewan

    Right I’m doing that!

  • http://invalid.name/ DanLane

    Let’s do that… you have my number!

  • http://whatleydude.com James Whatley

    I email, I text, I DM… 

    Are you ignoring me dear boy! :(

  • http://www.mobileindustryreview.com Ewan

    It’s just your imagination! I have it here standby!

  • http://twitter.com/ChrisRedpath Chris Redpath

    Agreed, I’d happily switch from Vodafone to anyone else who can provide a 3G service out in the sticks (and there are a couple) were it not for the femtocell Vodafone are practically giving away.
    Having one at home extended the battery life on our phones drastically.

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