iD MVNO to shake up Irish mobile market following O2-Three merger
Dixon Carphone launched its mobile network iD across Ireland on Friday with 4G as standard on all plans, offering personalised contracts it believes will undercut competitors’ prices.
iD’s average SIM-only plan will cost customers 20.81 euros per month, with plans ranging from 10 euros to 29 euros. Users can sign up for the service across all Dixons and Carphone Warehouse shops in Ireland, the company said.
iD is one of two virtual mobile network operators (VMNOs) being set up in Ireland as a condition of last year’s acquisition of O2’s Irish network by Three parent company Hutcheson Whampoa.
Television and broadband provider UPC is also planning to launch a mobile network in the country. Both UPC and iD rely on Three’s mobile infrastructure.
iD cited research from Killbiller that indicates iD’s contracts could offer savings of 166 euros per year compared with the average mobile contract in Ireland.
The company is emphasising flexibility and transparency, with users given the option of changing their plans from month to month at no extra charge.
Users can decide how much to pay for their handset up-front, with the balance split over 12, 18 or 24 months. iD said it is the first to offer a bill that will break out the handset cost from other monthly charges, with the handset fee removed from the bill once the device is paid off.
Customers will be able to trade in handsets bought with iD for updated versions, the network said.
Users can choose their own allowances for text messages, calls and data, ranging from 100 to 5,000 minutes or texts and 125MB to 20GB of data. The network said it won’t offer an “unlimited” option because such plans aren’t transparent, imposing hidden limits.
iD will initially offer devices including the Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge, the Galaxy S5, the HTC One M9 and M8, the Huawei G7 and Sony’s Experia E1.
The company said it plans to launch iD in 22 countries, including Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Portugal, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden as well as Australia and the US.
“People want greater flexibility from their plans and are fed up with the ‘one size fits all’ approach,” said Carphone Warehouse UK chief executive Graham Stapleton when iD was first announced.
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