The Co-operative Group have announced that they’re getting into the mobile phone business. The company plans to offer PAYG SIM cards at 3800 Co-Op supermarkets around the country starting this month.
The Co-Op hopes to be competitive on three fronts: pricing, coverage and – yes, this from the company that Paul Flowers used to be chairman of – honesty.
Calls will apparently cost 8p per minute – and only 4p/minute to other Co-Op users, with text messages at 4 pence (2p to other Co-Op users). Data will apparently be 5p per megabyte (perhaps better wait until you find a wifi connection then).
Perhaps most interesting in the new tariff is that they say they won’t be rounding the cost of calls up to the nearest minute – so whereas other networks would make you pay the price of a minute’s call for a ten second phone call, with the Co-Op it’ll only cost a couple of pence. Not bad if you’re cost-conscious.
The network itself is a virtual operator, working on the EE network – so wherever you can get EE coverage, you can get get Co-Op.
Whilst this probably isn’t big news for any data-hungry early adopters, it could prove useful if you need a SIM card for your mum, or if you’re a wannabe drug dealer in need of a ‘burner’ phone.