Standard and promotional prepaid data tariffs across South Africa’s mobile networks show vast differences in the prices consumers can expect to pay.
TechCentral has put together a table showing what the four mobile networks — Vodacom, MTN, Cell C and Telkom Mobile — are offering on standard prepaid data bundles and promotions (as at late November 2013).
In the table below are the networks’ standard bundle rates available throughout the year, along with the promotions they are currently running, with validity.
The most cost-effective solution by far is Cell C, with its data bundles coming in at 15c/MB both in and out of bundle, regardless of the quantity of data being purchased.
If a user runs out of data with Vodacom, regardless of which bundle they’ve purchased, they are charged a whopping R2/MB, a rate that has remained unchanged since April 2005.
However, MTN’s out-of-bundle rates differ according to the quantity of data purchased. For example, if you run out of a 2GB data bundle purchased at R245, expect to pay 19c/MB. But on a 20MB bundle, the out-of-bundle rate is a more crippling R1/MB.
Telkom Mobile has a flat out-of-bundle rate of R1/MB.
The most expensive mobile operator when looking at a 1GB bundle (forgetting promotional activity) is Vodacom at R279, followed by Telkom Mobile (including MTN roaming) at R180.
When it comes to promotional data bundle prices, a 5GB data bundle on both Vodacom and Cell C are on par at R399, both valid for 30 days.
Pricing on Vodacom gets cheaper the more data is purchased. For heavy data users, who require 10GB and 20GB of data, Vodacom comes in at R599 and R999 respectively against Cell C, which is more expensive at R699 and R1 199.
Of course, price isn’t everything, and users have to choose based on network coverage. Buying the most cost-effective data bundle means nothing if you can’t use it. — (c) 2013 NewsCentral Media
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