3 is poised to launch a new unlimited texts tariff next week that massively undercuts rival deals, Mobile understands.
The ‘Unlimited Texter’ tariff will come at three price points, with a £25 deal expected to be the headline promotion. It will offer 500 minutes and unlimited texts. The other tariffs will also offer unlimited texts but different levels of minutes.
Customers will be able to choose a Nokia 6500 or a Sony Ericsson W880 at the launch with the likelihood of more handsets available in the coming months.
The deal is expected to generate further price pressure in what is already an extremely competitive market. It is also expected to irritate rival networks who have only recently become comfortable with declining average monthly line rental prices following the success of T-Mobile’s £35-per-month Flext deal in early 2006.
Orange started offering free unlimited texts on its £30 and above Dolphin tariffs last year on the basis that customers wouldn’t use all their texts, and that it was a compelling sale. Several operators followed suit with similar unlimited text deals.
3 is hoping its new deal will out-muscle rivals in the £25 bracket. Orange currently offers 100 minutes and 300 texts for £25, while Vodafone has a text heavy package of 150 minutes and 500 texts. O2 customers can get 200 minutes and 200 texts for the same price, while T-Mobile customers can get choose between 450 minutes or 900 texts.