Vodacom OOB notifications – From nothing, to near perfect

MyBroadband recently tested the out-of-bundle notification systems of local mobile network providers.

We found the systems did a poor job at notifying users that their data bundles were depleted – and did not give them an opportunity to stop their airtime from being used for data.

MTN and Vodacom’s systems failed to stop our test devices from running out of data and airtime, while Telkom avoided the issue altogether by automatically blocking us from going out of bundle.

The Vodacom test in particular was surprising, as we received no SMS notifications that our data or airtime was depleting.

Round 2

To see if Vodacom and MTN have improved their notification systems, we conducted another round of tests.

We put a prepaid SIM from each network into a Motorola Moto Z, loaded a data bundle and airtime, opened the YouTube app, and watched a video.

When we received an OOB notification from the provider, we immediately turned on Airplane Mode to prevent further mobile data or airtime usage.

We then closed YouTube and connected to a Wi-Fi network. The data and airtime balances were then checked.

The results are detailed below.


Vodacom

We purchased a 100MB data bundle and R12 airtime for the test.

We received a USSD pop-up notification when our data balance reached 48MB, which warned us of the depleting balance and prompted us to buy more data.

Vodacom then sent an SMS notification when our data reached 28MB, and an SMS when our data was depleted.

After receiving the final notification, we switched to flight mode and checked the airtime balance.

The data bundle was depleted and the airtime balance had decreased by R0.32. Vodacom charges R0.99 per MB for out-of-bundle data.

Vodacom’s system has greatly improved since the last test, and saved almost all of our airtime.

Start

  • Airtime – R12.00
  • Data – 100MB

End

  • Airtime – R11.68
  • Data – 0MB

Vodacom redesigned branding


MTN

We purchased a 100MB data bundle and R12 airtime for the test.

MTN delivered a single SMS notification, for the depletion of the data bundle, during our test.

Mobile data access was switched off immediately after the notification was received, but our airtime was already depleted.

MTN charges R0.99 per MB for out-of-bundle data.

Start

  • Airtime – R12.00
  • Data – 100MB

End

  • Airtime – R0.00
  • Data – 0MB

MTN logo yellow


Now read: Vodacom vs MTN on the Gautrain

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Vodacom OOB notifications – From nothing, to near perfect