After the news that 2degrees would be carrying out a trial of unlimited mobile data plans for customers, Spark and Skinny are launching similar mobile plans that allow users to operate with no restrictions on mobile data, minutes or texting.
Jason Paris, CEO of Spark mobile, has some doubts about the competing plan offered by 2degrees.
“We’ve seen 2degrees' new ‘unlimited’ plan – and while we like the intent, we believe it leaves customers with as many questions as answers,” he says.
“How can the plan be ‘unlimited’ when 2degrees have said there is a fair use limit? What does ‘fair use’ mean? What experience will a customer receive once 2degrees thinks they have used too much?”
Spark wanted to provide clarity and make things easier for their customers, according to Paris.
“We sat down and looked at these unanswered questions and thought, we can make this simpler for our customers?” he says.
“So, we’re launching Freedom plans, which provide customers with most of the benefits of an ‘unlimited’ approach, but are clear and simple to understand and put customers back in control.”
The move is a first for Spark and Skinny with Freedom plans for both being launched on the same day.Spark will offer a package which, aside from unlimited data, will include Spotify Premium and Lightbox. Skinny Direct will be a simple unlimited data plan.
The first 22GB per month on a Freedom plan runs at full speed, after which customers on this plan can continue browsing - However, Spark may reduce their speed to ‘protect other mobile and wireless broadband customers’ experience.’
“We think this transparent approach allows customers to do what they love on their mobiles – via a sustainable solution that balances some customers’ requirements for large amounts of data with an ongoing reliable network experience for the rest of our customers,” Paris explains.
“We think this is the right model for the New Zealand market.”
Paris explained further on the decision to pursue this model.
“Some companies have offered ‘unlimited’ data in a way that hasn’t been commercially sustainable as customers’ appetite for data consumption outstripped the economics of the model, often resulting in poor network experiences for their wider customer base,” he says.
“Others have claimed to offer ‘unlimited’ data, but put so many non-transparent constraints in place that the customer experience fails to meet the promise of a truly unlimited plan.”
The plans will be available for customers before Easter.