Vodafone has launched a smartphone rental service, allowing customers to have Apple and Samsung handsets across a 12-month contract.
Consumers get unlimited calls, texts and 2GB of data per month. Line rental starts at £47 per month for the Samsung Galaxy S III 16GB handset. The 32GB version costs £52 per month, with a £29 upfront payment. The Samsung Galaxy Note is also £52 per month, but with no one-off cost.The 16GB iPhone 5 is free upfront and has a £59 per month line rental. The 32GB handset costs £29, with a £64 line rental and the 64GB costs £49 with £69 paid monthly.
At the end of the 12-month period, a customer can choose to extend their contract, or trade their handset in for a new model.
Vodafone consumer director Srini Gopalan [pictured] said: 'We've been working incredibly hard to simplify the price plans we offer to customers. Vodafone Red Hoet marks another way to stay one step ahead of their friends, having the latest technology in their hands. Coupled with unlimited calls, texts and a massive amount of internet, we think there will be many customers who will see this as a great choice.'
O2 launched its own leasing service last December. The proposition is only available to businesses, despite being initially launched to consumers and companies last December.
Ernest Doku, from price comparison site uSwitch, said while rental deals are attractive, consumers could be put off by the high monthly bills. He said: 'Although this plan is exciting and could offer a solution to tech-loving consumers who always want the hottest handsets, there is a high price to pay. However, it does give consumers another choice, which should be applauded. What is important is that consumers weigh up all the options available and choose the best plan to suit their needs.'
Editor: Graeme Neill