o2 vs orange vs t-mobile vs vodaphone

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by TwoBytes, Nov 6, 2009.

  1. TwoBytes macrumors 68020

    TwoBytes

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    #1
    since we will be unlock the iphone soon, which operator is the best for: coverage
    support
    international roaming rates
    data allowance

    I think we should sticky this somewhere..

    I read Vodafone is biggest company of the majors BUT as Ryan has mentioned below, for UK purposes, o2 have the largest claim of mobile subscribers in the UK (which will be a major concern of those UK people reading)

    1: voda (biggest operator in the world?, but presence in UK overshadowed by o2)
    2: o2 (extra benefits of btopenzone/cloud wifi)
    3: orange (french origin)
    4: t-mobile (germain origin but presence in the USA)
     
  2. -Ryan- macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    #2
    Well, you're wrong on the number of subscribers for a start; o2 is currently the largest UK provider, with almost 30% of UK mobile subscribers. This is then followed by Vodafone and then Orange. T-Mobile is reasonably insignificant, though they may merge with Orange in the future depending on whether the EU have a problem with any sort of anti-competitive tactics.

    Coverage is a subjective issue and depends on where someone lives and travels. All the main providers have areas of good reception and bad reception; I've tended to think that o2 and Orange have the best though.

    Support I think is almost a non-issue here, as you'll find a strange system in the UK mobile market that all customer suppose gets better the longer one has been a customer for. I'm not sure the reason for this - probably customer retention, but it's always been the case.

    Roaming rates in the EU were standardised earlier in the year which has made it much cheaper. All providers still charge extortionate amounts outside the EU, but with the advent of services like Skype, even available on iPhone, I think this has become less of a pressing issue when choosing a provider. Also, with WiFi built in, there is no reason to need to use roaming data networks which are hideously expensive all round.

    By the way, while T-Mobile UK is relatively insignificant in the mobile industry for consumers, they have huge influence because they provide some or all services for smaller providers such as Virgin, Tesco Mobile and 3.
     
  3. TwoBytes thread starter macrumors 68020

    TwoBytes

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    #3
    Thanks, I'd edit the post above to reflect your info. I will admit to not knowing who's on top of the mobile operating world!

    RE the companies who licence of the majors, i read it's

    ASDA - Vodafone
    TESCO - o2
     
  4. -Ryan- macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    #4
    Yeah that applies to GSM service, but for HSDPA service T-Mobile are the big dog in the UK. They along with 3 made massive investments in their high speed data networks years ago, and it really does show. Such a pity that the main companies (ahem, o2) are so badly lagging behind.
     
  5. sorchard macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2007
    #5
    In terms of 3G coverage, it is 3 (T-Mobile might be if the MBNL merger has finished) and Orange who are leading the pack.

    Vodafone and o2 are way behind - the latter being the only company to get a telling off from OFCOM for failing to improve coverage in accordance with their 3G licence. Surprisingly though I can get o2 3G here, and I live in a fairly rural place.

    Apple made an excellent decision on making their phone exclusive to the network with the worst 3G coverage and a data network that collapses weekly. Same with Palm.
     
  6. DenniZ macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Location:
    Liverpool, UK
    #6
    Well, comparing only Vodafone, Orange and O2, I prefer O2 the best.

    Mainly because O2 unlimited is actually unlimited. Vodafone and Orange usually have a hidden cap after saying unlimited.

    Also such simple things as picture messaging, I know on orange does not come out of the unlimited texts, however on O2, it just counts as 4 normal messages.

    Again finally for the call divert, O2 do it for free, no matter who your diverting, Orange and Vodafone both charge for this.
     
  7. RandomKamikaze macrumors 6502a

    RandomKamikaze

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    Jan 8, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #7
    Don't forget that speed these days as well.

    According to the OfCom report you are correct about the coverage, but I believe Vodafone still tout the fastest network, where they offer 14.4Mbps in some areas.

    And with customer service, some people say one is better than the other, but what it really comes down to, is who you speak to on the phone, how much of a jobs worth they area, and the sort of day they have had. It's purely hit and miss
     
  8. TwoBytes thread starter macrumors 68020

    TwoBytes

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    Jun 2, 2008
    #8
    to add; is o2 the only operator with btopenzone access?
     
  9. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

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    The Black Country, England
    #9
    No. The Orange iPhone tariffs all come with BT Openzone Wi-Fi access.
     
  10. gjw4u macrumors 6502

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    Dec 2, 2008
    Location:
    Switzerland
    #10
    OP, T-Mobile is German & not US (although they do also operate in the US, as does orange in multiple countries).
    T-Mobile
     
  11. Gav2k macrumors G3

    Gav2k

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    Jul 24, 2009
    #11
    Oranges unlimited data is 750 over that your paying big bucks
     
  12. BBM macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2009
    #12
    I have seen recent 'Customer Experience Testing' results showing rolling results with
    -O2 consistently achieving 1st
    -Voda not far behind in 2nd
    -Orange 3rd
    -T Mobile somewhat behind in 4th
    -'3' in a sorry 5th

    Points to note -
    O2 and Voda are now well within an aggressive infrastructure sharing model and churning out sites and consolidating others in various areas. Being the shrewdest two of the lot, will want to make sure they stay on top at all costs, which will only mean good news for customers 'network quality wise'.
    The companies (sales, marketing etc.) remain separate.

    T-Mobile and '3' have also been trying to consolidate each of their networks and rollout under the MBNL venture.

    With the 'possible' approval from competition watchdogs, Orange and T-Mobile on a company level will merge to become 'Ora-Bile' (that's a joke by the way), and leave '3', 'company' wise as an insignificant ankle biter for ever more.

    My view is the upheaval attached to mergers on any level creates uncertainty, low morale and confusion. Billing platforms, system architecture, customer service etc. etc. all get thrown into a pot with each company having individuals with influence on every level fighting to hang onto what they believe is best.
    Now until that all get sorted out can you imagine the potential for disruption? Taking the eye off the ball?
    I think O2 and Vodafone are going to capitalise on this 'opportunity' for themselves. They do not have anything to change on the customer service level or their sales offerings, only just fine tune for the better, invest and grow stronger. If it was your company you would wouldn't you!
    And looking at the greater Telefonica Group and Vodafone Group backing I am sure they are not going to want second place.
    As a parting thought, Telefonica turnover eclipses the turnover of Coca-Cola, McDonalds and Nike put together!!!! :eek::)
     
  13. Zedsdead185 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    acyually thats not quite correct. If you go over oranges 750mb fair usage (several times in a row for a couple of months) then you don't get charged extra for any data used over that. What will happen is orange will contact you and tell you to cut down on your usage, and if you ignore that then they will slow your data transmission speeds.
    This is why orange are being able to get away with it being called 'unlimited' because you actually are able to go over it as much as you want without getting any extra charges on your bill. It just so happens that you get a telling off if you do.
    IMO, this still counts as limited.
     
  14. BBM macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2009
    #14
  15. sorchard macrumors regular

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    Dec 22, 2007
    #15
    It also correlates with the experience I get where I live (Cornwall) - 3 and Orange are definately way ahead of everyone else.

    What good is an HSDPA network that has headline fast speeds if its coverage is so crap you can't use it? I'd rather get "slow" 3.6Mbit on a network that has better coverage than be stuck on GPRS with Vodafone or o2.
     
  16. BBM macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2009
    #16
    Strange, I get excellent throughput 3.6 in 3G enabled areas of Cornwall and Devon. A mate working with a very mobile unit of D&C Constabulary with a remit all over Cornwall cannot stand being stuck on '3' and has chosen to just pay up and piggyback another network and leave his 3 sim in a drawer. Same goes for a good few mates who are sales reps in the surf industry running up and down in vans visiting shops all over.
    Horses for courses ey....:cool:
     
  17. MacFanUK macrumors 6502a

    MacFanUK

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    Jul 29, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #17
    How long do we think it will take for the handset price on Pay as you go to drop now there are more than just o2 offering it?
     
  18. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

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    The Black Country, England
    #18
    The price for the Orange PAYG is almost exactly the same as what O2 are charging so unless Vodafone surprise us next year I would say the chance of a price drop is extremely unlikely.
     
  19. RandomKamikaze macrumors 6502a

    RandomKamikaze

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    Jan 8, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #19
    I didn't blast your post about coverage. Where I am I get perfect 3G HSPA speed. Yesterday I was downloading as fast as my "8MB" home broadband, so in my situation speed is more important
     
  20. MacFanUK macrumors 6502a

    MacFanUK

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    Location:
    UK
    #20
    Do you not think o2 and Orange may compete? o2 handsets are always more expensive than every other carrier in my experience.
     
  21. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2005
    Location:
    The Black Country, England
    #21
    8GB 3G
    • O2 - £342.50
    • Orange - £343.00

    16GB 3GS
    • O2 - £440.40
    • Orange - £440.00

    32GB 3GS
    • O2 - £538.30
    • Orange - £539.00

    The evidence doesn't suggest they are engaged in a price war. It's obvious from the almost identical handset and tariff costs that Apple are in control of iPhone pricing.
     

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