Three raises SIM-only mobile prices

31 January 2014

Mobile phone network Three has raised the price of its SIM-only tariffs by £5 a month – but the move will only affect new customers.

The network has raised the price of its popular One Plan SIM-only deals, with the one-month plan rising from £18 to £23, and the 12-month version increasing from £15 to £20.

The move comes soon after communications regulator Ofcom introduced new rules that prevent landline, broadband or mobile phone providers from hiking monthly subscription prices mid-contract for existing customers.

Three moved quickly to reassure customers that its price rises complied with the new Ofcom rules and only affect new customers.

A spokesman said: "We review our pricing from time to time. For example, while our one-month rolling The One Plan SIM is now at £23, it is at a lower price than June last year when it was £25. We think these deals remain strong offers with the benefits of all you can eat data."

Three also denied the price increase had anything to do with its free 4G offering, after some technology blogs and websites suggested its new price rises were a means of subsidising its free 4G roll-out.

Free 4G

Tesco became the latest mobile phone operator to promise free 4G to customers. The supermarket's 4G customers had been paying a £2.50 surcharge but that will no longer be the case as the provider aims to make 4G available for all of its customers.

The high-speed service will be available to Tesco customers with 4G-ready handsets from as little as £7.50 a month with a SIM-only tariff, giving them 250 minutes of talk time, 5,000 texts and 500MB of data.

Tesco Mobile also confirmed it will be launching 4G data bundles for Pay As You Go customers in the coming weeks.

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