UK Mobile Network giffgaff Wants To Be Run By You; Competing For Bringing Down Costs So Mobile Users Can Save Money


Image by AJC1 via Flickr

A small UK mobile network which is known as giffgaff sounds like heaven!  I have just only heard of it, and so I can’t really make head or tail of it.  Nonetheless, so far I understand that this is UK service only (for now), but if I’m wrong, please do correct me.  The mobile network giffgaff claims is that it hands over most mobile responsibilities and powers to the mobile users themselves.  As mobile users invite more users, they get more goodies from giffgaff such as free minutes, cash, and so on (correct me if I’m wrong on this).  No long term contract, and as giffgaff saves costs of not having to spend on hiring large staffs and maintaining several core business infrastructures, giffgaff can pass down the savings to giffgaff users in goodies such as free minutes, cash, and so on.

Before users can start using giffgaff, they need to have their smartphones unlocked and order a free SIM card from giffgaff.  On giffgaff official website, it shows the phone plans in £10 to £20 range.  Just take a look at its cheapest plan (£10) and get a rough idea why giffgaff can look very enticing to some mobile users.  For paying just £10 a month with giffgaff, mobile users get 250 UK minutes, unlimited UK texts, unlimited Internet, and free to giffgaff (I think this is about calling between giffgaff users is free).  After the inclusive minutes of £10 plan have been used up, extra minutes will cost somewhere 10 pences per minute.  Texting and surfing the Internet with giffgaff are truly unlimited, and so there will be no tariff on these two services for users who use £10 plan.  Voicemail per call will cost 8 pences after the inclusive minutes in the £10 plan have been used up.

In my opinion, giffgaff is still a company, therefore its main focus is still all about making profits.  Nonetheless, giffgaff is rather unique in a sense that it’s competing against other big mobile players in the arena of bringing down the costs for mobile users.  One big drawback I can see with giffgaff is that it’s somewhat depending on the members of giffgaff community to provide customer supports.  Customer supports provide by other members of giffgaff can sometimes be varied in helpful to non-helpful.  The standard for providing ultra good customer support isn’t existed.  This might prevent some people from having good customer/user experience with giffgaff.

If mobile network giffgaff continues to grow, I think some entrepreneurs in the United States might try to replicate the formula.  Bringing down the mobile monthly payment and costs are definitely two of the many priorities that mobile users in the United States have in mind.  With business model of giffgaff, I think mobile users in the United States might love it.  In fact, you never know that giffgaff model may thrive even healthier than how it’s in UK.  What do you think?

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