Today, around 11am, 2degrees is going to have a major press conference on Auckland’s waterfront.
UPDATE: 2degrees launches 3G, but only big cities get the best deals
We already know they’ll be some blather about it being the telco’s first anniversary.
It’s already been announced that 2degrees’ iPhone 4 and iPad 3G-compatible Micro-SIM cards will be released through Dick Smith stores today.
We already know that 2degrees’ 3G network is already open to the public and, according to the company, will probably remain live until its official launch (meaning, whisper it, that it’s effectively already launched).
And we already know several of the handsets and data sticks in 2degrees’ 3G line up, thanks to accidentally-on-purpose leaks from the Warehouse, Dick Smith and PB.
What we don’t know is the shape of 2degrees’ 3G plans, and their pricing.
Hopefully that will be announced today, along with the official launch date.
One thing it would be good to see is flexibility.
2degrees chief executive Eric Hertz has previously talked to NBR about “a new type of plan” for people who dislike fixed-term contracts; something that likes “between pre-pay and post-pay” (and with some unique frills. “How about a plan that you could suspend if you went overseas for six months?”, he said at one point).
With its latest pre-pay plan, ($30 for 100 minutes, with no minutes rolling over to the next month) 2degrees leaned in this direction.
And Vodafone seems to be anticipating 2degrees will go for some kind of short-term or monthly-term model with its 3G plans.
For yesterday Vodafone unveiled a couple of new, SIM-only plans under the “SIMple” banner with the tagline that they offer “all the benefits of On Account, with the freedom of a one-month term” (although customers are offered 50% more minutes if they upgrade to a traditional 12-month contract).
Lots of room to move on price
Another thing that would be good to see is cheaper data.
There’s a couple of keen deals around, namely Vodafone’s temporary free 3GB of data free for iPhone customers.
But we still look jealously across the Tasman to deals like Vodafone Australia’s unlimited data for $A49 a month for iPad 3G.
And Aussies, in turn, look jealously further afield. Tweeted Munir Kotadia, recently of ZDnet.com.au, as he got his mobile affairs in order in a new country: “Signed up with Singtel in Singapore. 16gb of 3g data and texts, calls etc for $S35 [$NZ33] a month!”
Last week, Vodafone PLC released accounts showing Vodafone NZ had lost 25,000 customers in its most recent quarter.
The percentage of customers on pre-play dipped at the same time, indicating a bleed to 2degrees.
Telecom chief executive Paul Reynolds recently told analysts he was surprised at the extent Vodafone had discounted in reaction (he claimed) to 2degrees.
It would be great to see that price war expand to 3G data, with all three carriers embroiled in the fight.
Tue, 03 Aug 2010