LTE prices: UK vs South Africa

UK based mobile operator EE has recently unveiled its LTE (dubbed 4G) data packages, offering consumers data-only and blended packages (data, voice calls and text messages). Pricing starts at £25.99 for 2GB of data on a 24-month contract.

EE will be launching its LTE network (called 4G or 4GEE) on 30 October 2012 in ten cities across the UK, including Liverpool, London, and Manchester.

The company has aggressive bundled data, voice, and text message packages which offer subscribers unlimited calls and text with a data bundle.

  • 500MB with unlimited calls and texts – £21
  • 1GB with unlimited calls and texts – £26
  • 3GB with unlimited calls and texts – £31
  • 5GB with unlimited calls and texts – £36

These bundled packages offer exceptional value for money, but when it comes to data-only the pricing is less impressive.

Mobile broadband 4GEE - 24 month contract
Mobile broadband 4GEE – 24-month contract

On a 24-month data-only contract, pricing starts at £25.99 for a 2GB data bundle, and increases to £35.99 for a 5GB data bundle. It is not clear whether these bundles include an LTE device.

Curiously, the same products on an 18-month contract are cheaper than the 24-month product pricing.

Mobile broadband 4GEE - 18 month contract
Mobile broadband 4GEE – 18 month contract

In South Africa, Vodacom is the only operator to have launched commercial LTE services, offering data at the same price as its standard data rates.

This means that consumers can experience LTE at well below R100 per GB on one of Vodacom’s promotional data contracts.

The following table compares the data-only prices on a 24-month contract between Vodacom and EE (1 GBP = 13.9767 ZAR).

Mobile data packages
Service 2GB 3GB 5GB
Vodacom LTE – 24 month contract (No modem) R139 R189 R789
Vodacom LTE – 24 month contract (with LTE modem) R199 R249 R839
EE 4GEE – 24 month contract R363 R433 R503
EE 4GEE – 18 month contract R223 R293 R363

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LTE prices: UK vs South Africa