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Sky Mobile is a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO), which means it does not use its own dedicated network. Rather, Sky Mobile is served by O2’s network infrastructure. Most major mobile networks in the UK will operate through either the O2, EE, Vodafone or Three networks – so Sky not having its own network isn’t cause for concern.
The O2 network offers 4G coverage for 98% of the UK. According to the latest data from Opensignal, O2 averages about 15Mbps, which is a pretty good speed for mobile activity. And Sky Mobile has 5G service, too, which is free to its users. To take advantage of it, Sky has created something called a 5G add-on, which you add to your existing account. Sky recommends that you only do this once you have your 5G phone, as adding it while still using a 4G setup may affect the quality of your 4G service.
Sky Mobile offers a great range of SIM-only and handset deals on all the latest smartphones. So whether you’re after a good deal on a brand-new iPhone or you want a cheap SIM plan with calls, texts and data, Sky Mobile will have lots of tariffs for you to choose from.
For customers who choose to get a new phone from Sky Mobile, the cost of the device will be divided across your contract period. So, if you’re on a two-year contract, you’ll pay for the phone in 24 monthly instalments, billed together with your monthly mobile data bill. Paying in instalments can make it much easier to cover the costs, as opposed to paying for everything upfront.
You won’t outright own the device until after it’s fully paid off. So if it gets broken or lost before the contract ends and you haven’t purchased insurance, you will need to keep paying it off each month for the remainder of the contract.
The process for signing up for a Sky Mobile handset plan is simple:
Swap24 is a 36-month contract that lets you upgrade to a new phone any time after month 24 with no extra charges, while Swap12 is a 24-month contract where you can upgrade for free after a year. Typically, Swap12 plans have higher monthly costs than Swap24 plans.
Select a monthly plan that offers 2GB, 8GB, 10GB, 25GB, 30GB or 60GB of data. There is also a 100MB option for those who feel that they won’t be using data at all - with this option (and the rest) streaming Sky-based products won’t come out of your data allowance. Or alternatively, you can opt for just the phone without a SIM.
When you sign up, you’ll be able to view a cost breakdown based on what you’ve selected. This will show the amount you’ll pay each month for the device, the amount you’ll pay for the SIM and data, and any upfront costs.
Select a delivery time for your device and SIM, and you’ll be up and running in no time.
If you don’t need or want a new phone alongside your new mobile plan, you can also opt for one of six SIM-only deals available with Sky Mobile. You can choose a monthly data allowance of 2GB, 8GB, 10GB, 25G, 35GB or 60GB.
While Sky Mobile SIM-only plans come as 12-month contracts, customers have the flexibility to switch to a different data allowance at any time using the Sky Mobile app, completely free of charge. If you want to cancel the plan outright, without switching to a different Sky Mobile SIM-only plan, you’ll need to provide 31 days’ notice, and you are likely to face early exit fees.
It’s important to remember that if you are opting for a SIM-only deal and Sky Mobile was not your previous provider, you’ll need to ensure that the phone you intend on using it with is unlocked. Network operators tend to lock devices so that they can only be used with that specific network, but you are able to contact them and request that they unlock it on your behalf.
All plans with Sky Mobile offer a data rollover feature, simply called Roll. With Roll, any data you don’t use in a month will be saved and stored, and you can continue to build this ‘piggybank’ for up to three years, accessing the funds whenever you wish. You can also share data with family members on the same account.
Customers who were already with Sky prior to January 2019 will benefit from unlimited calls and texts inclusive with any Sky Mobile plan. Any newer customers can choose between unlimited calls and texts at a current rate of £10 per month, or a pay-as-you-use call and texting rate of 10p per minute or per text.
For an additional £3 per month, you can add on the International Saver allowance, which offers discounted charges on calls and texts to over 60 destinations outside of the UK. Currently, these rates are 5p per minute, and 10p per text.
An important thing to consider when choosing your mobile network provider is roaming, and the various charges and restrictions that may be involved with doing so. This is when you access data outside of your provider’s coverage area, usually when you’re travelling outside of the UK.
With Sky Mobile, roaming is offered at no extra cost in over 30 countries. This is a feature called “Roaming Passport”. There are an additional 12 non-EU locations where you can roam at a reduced rate in a feature called Roaming Passport Plus. Currently, you’d pay £6 per each 24-hour period you access data in one of these destinations. Roaming Passport Plus activates automatically when you use your data in the covered destinations.
Sky Mobile is 5G ready and currently available in 150 towns and cities. 5G comes at no extra cost, but you have to set up the 5G add-on to your account. The average speed you should be getting is around 115.7Mbps.
If you’re a current customer of Sky TV signing up for mobile, you’ll be glad to know there are some special features designed for you. The use of any Sky app on your Sky Mobile device, be it the My Sky or Sky+ apps, will not count towards your monthly data allowance – so you can stream as much Sky TV content as you want without ever having to worry about it eating up your data. This can be a hugely beneficial offer, as streaming generally uses up a lot of data very quickly.
Because Sky is still relatively new to the mobile network field, there isn’t a whole lot of statistical data surrounding customer satisfaction and performance compared to other providers. However, Sky UK as a whole is praised for its strong customer service reputation across all of its services, from broadband to pay TV.
Sky’s customer service lines are open from 8:30pm to 11:30pm, seven days a week.
In 2019, Sky Mobile received the Best Value Pay Monthly, Best Network for Customer Service, and Best Overall Pay Monthly awards from Uswitch in 2020 it was named Network of the Year. In the Uswitch Broadband & Mobile Awards 2021, it won best Best Value Pay Monthly Network and Best Pay Monthly Network.
Sky Mobile’s Roll feature is a great advantage. While many mobile network operators will offer rollover data features, the ability to save unused data for three years is exclusive to Sky. As a matter of fact, it’s rare to find another provider that would even let you hold onto that data for more than an extra month. This is perhaps Sky’s strongest feature, and could certainly be one that seals the deal for switching over.
Furthermore, if you’re a Sky TV customer, you can benefit from unlimited use of its apps without spending any of your monthly data, and this could provide some decent savings. Managing your account with Sky is very straightforward and user-friendly, with customers able to make adjustments to their plans within seconds on the My Sky app, without any long waiting times or complicated admin.