How to cut your mobile costs by £200 a year

How to cut your mobile costs by £200 a year

Reckon your monthly mobile fix costs too much? You're certainly not alone. And the solution is to force network providers to lower their costs, right?

Well, that's one way. Another, however, would be for us to stop wasting the near-£5bn we're throwing away each year by being on the wrong contracts in the first place.

A new Billmonitor study has revealed that fully three-quarters of all mobile phone subscribers aren't using up the calls, texts and data their contracts provide each month, with the average value of the unused services per user adding up to nearly £200 every year.

The most common area of wastage is on free minutes, with the majority of phone users only using a quarter of their monthly allocation.

When it comes to texts, meanwhile, the we're sending around 300 texts a month on average, while mobile data use has doubled in the past 12 months. In total, we're spending £439 a year on our phones.

Billmonitor's Dr Stelios Koundouros says the main reason most of us go for a tariff offering us more free minutes than we're ever likely to use is that we're scared of how much it'll cost should be exceed our allocation.

“Everything is expensive when you go over your allowance,” Dr Koundouros said. “However, the over-compensation of a four times bigger contract that at least half of those on the wrong contract are getting, that's not a rational response.”


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JanSt / MOD  Apr. 11, 2011 at 13:44

As to data, Opera and various other outfits estimate that 60 to 80% of data allowances are unused. A small number of subscribers go over the maximum, while most others would get buy with a smaller or no add-on. That ties in with, e.g. Twitter's stats - 90% or so of all tweetin is done buy 5-10% of twitter members.
When I used a Blqckberry Bold, I was entitled to a 100 MB per day for 19 cent. I am online a lot, had 5 email accounts to sync, and IM+ was constantly running, as was twitter. I used on average 10% of my allowance ;)
And the thing is, if someone were to really use mobile data a lot - with youtube and radio streaming, most add-ons are farcically inadequate: the now standard 500 or 750 MB give you about one movie! Or 8-9 hours of high quality net radio... Not much to stay entertained over a month.
Plus now there are voip apps and web text apps and services like BBM and twitter take a lot off the sms load. (I send about 5 sms per month)
I'm on prepay, and I did the maths: the cheapest contract would double my monthly bill!

kennydies  Apr. 13, 2011 at 10:54

My inital contract was expensive but I used it after I worked out the cheapest way to purchase my Desire for 18mths.
That contract has now finished and have changed to Virgin mobile rolling 30 day contract. Unlimited text, 200mins call and 750MD date for £10 a month, bargain.

lumoruk  Apr. 14, 2011 at 00:50

agree with Kennydies, you really need to work out how much a phone would cost you to buy out right rather than stay on a high cost tariff for 24 months. Just bought my C7 for £150 now on £8 per month contract with Three 2GB allowance, 200 minutes, unlimited 3-3, 5000 texts, 30 day rolling contract.


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