Tesco Mobile has joined the 4G price war by announcing its 4G service will be free from today (30 January).
The retailer also confirmed that both new and existing SIM-only postpay customers would benefit from an ultrafast service at no extra charge, making it the first MVNO to offer the service for free. The supermarket chain had been charging £2.50 extra for 4G previously.
Tesco chief marketing officer, Simon Groves, said: ‘After giving customers the chance to try 4G at their own pace with our flexible 4G tariffs, we've seen people really benefit from what it has to offer. Customers should be able to expect more from their mobile network, so as we see demand for 4G become more widespread, we wanted to take a different approach. Introducing free 4G is a clear example of our intention to provide all of our customers with the very best at no extra cost.’
Mobile expert at uSwitch, Rob Kerr, added: ‘Tesco's free 4G offering is SIM-only for now at least, meaning it's a good option for anyone wanted to try out 4G without having to commit to a long-term contract. However, it's more than likely you'll need to invest in a new 4G-enabled device to take advantage - and these start from around £170.
‘Being an entry-level offer, the data allowance with the £7.50 monthly contract isn’t hugely generous. Anyone who takes advantage of premium-free 4G will have to keep an eye on how quickly they're racing towards their limit. At the moment Three is the only other network set to offer 4G without a premium - but Tesco has pipped it to the post and is also the first MVNO to give the mobile giants a run for their money. And with Tesco's brand power and the same coverage as O2, it could force the hand of the bigger networks to continue making 4G more affordable across the board. The big question is, how low will they go?’