Mystery Caller: Mobile broadband

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Mystery Caller has just started his first year at university. Money is tight so he is looking for the best mobile broadband prepay plan out there. What did the big providers have to offer?

6: T-Mobile

The looming FBI-like interrogation caused me to wonder if I had called the front desk of Guantanamo Bay

Manner – 0/5
Understanding – 1/5
Knowledge – 3/5
Helpfulness – 0/5
Clarity – 1/5
Overall – 1/5
Total – 6/30

5: Vodafone

I could envisage Michael, reaching for his night cap and leaning back in his chair for a quick 40 winks

Manner – 2/5
Understanding – 1/5
Knowledge – 1/5
Helpfulness – 1/5
Clarity – 1/5
Overall – 1/5
Total – 7/30

4: Virgin Mobile

For Virgin, the notification period was two months. I wasn’t convinced my student lifestyle would allow me to be so organised

Manner – 2/5
Understanding – 3/5
Knowledge – 4/5
Helpfulness – 2/5
Clarity – 4/5
Overall – 4/5
Total – 19/30

3: O2

“Ooh, that is going to be a lot of usage. I’m not sure any of our packages will be enough”

Manner – 4/5
Understanding – 3/5
Knowledge – 4/5
Helpfulness – 4/5
Clarity – 2/5
Overall – 3/5
Total – 20/30

2: Orange

She seemed like she cared about what I was asking, answering with speed

Manner – 4/5
Understanding –3/5
Knowledge – 3/5
Helpfulness – 4/5
Clarity – 3/5
Overall – 4/5
Total – 21/30

1: Three

Now he had me. What tools was he talking about? I must admit, it kicked off my ‘freebie’s radar’

Manner – 3/5
Understanding – 5/5
Knowledge – 5/5
Helpfulness – 4/5
Clarity – 5/5
Overall – 4/5
Total – 26/30

Summary

There isn’t much separating the range of mobile broadband out there, although Three seemed to have the best product. Service is therefore very often a deal clincher.

Carlos from T-Mobile was an all out fail in almost every department. Naomi at Orange was polite and cheerful and her simplifi ed language scored her points. Lucy at Virgin’s prior knowledge of what I wanted was a pleasant surprise, while although Vodafone’s product was decent enough it would have helped if Michael’s surname wasn’t McSnoozy. At Three David’s professionalism was impressive and appreciated while Zoe from O2 genuinely seemed to care despite the fact she tried to sell me a product that was already there.

Full review in Mobile News issue 478 (December 6, 2010).

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