I may not be a resident of the United Kingdom, but I am a fan of affordable smartphone plans. I love seeing wireless service providers that offer solid coverage and awesome features without breaking the bank, and the launch of Sky Mobile in the UK looks to check off all of those points. Sky initially announced their plans to release a wireless service with the help of O2 back in January 2015, and following registrations that opened for Sky Mobile back in October, the company has now announced all of the juicy details about what the all-new service is actually bringing to the table.
Before we get into the good stuff, let's get some of the more boring bits out of the way. Calls and text messages with Sky Mobile are charged either one of two ways - pay-as-you-go or with a monthly charge. Each minute of call-time and SMS message will cost 10 pence if you choose the pay-as-you-go route, or you can pony up £10/month for unlimited calling and texting. In regards to data, there are three different plans to choose from. 4G data allowances of 1, 3, and 5GB are available with them costing £10, £15, and £20/month respectively. Signing up as a customer for Sky Mobile will require you to agree to a 1-year contract, but the nice thing here is the fact that you aren't stuck with the data plan that you initially sign up with. You can change your data plan each month, so if you think you're going to need some extra 4G speeds in a particular month, you can simply change it and then pay the price difference.
The pricing model and ability to swap between available data plans is a nice-enough feature on its own, but we've yet to talk about Sky Mobile's biggest feature - rollover data. At the end of each month, Sky Mobile will look to see if you have any data leftover that you didn't use during that time period. If you do, that data will then be sent to your "piggybank." You can dip into this piggybank if you find that you need additional data during a month and don't necessarily want to pay more for an additional monthly data allowance, and while the data in your piggybank does expire after three years, Sky Mobile has it set up so that the data you take out of it is the stuff that's set to expire the soonest. Plus, if you have a family, up to five people on a plan can all link their accounts to the same piggybank to create for a rather healthy stash of extra data.
Sky Mobile is currently launching as a SIM-only provider, and if you happen to be a subscriber to Sky+ TV, you'll be able to score unlimited calls and texts for free (normally £10/month) in addition to free access to Sky Go Extra (Sky's mobile app for downloading offline video content and streaming live TV programming to your smartphone). On top of all this, Sky Mobile customers will gain access to a brand new feature called "Sync." With Sync, you'll be able to see all of the content that's currently available on your Sky+ box at your house. Sync is an addition to the Sky Go Extra app, and Sky is trying to sell and market it as the best feature of the app yet.
Just who can sign up for Sky Mobile? As it stands, only those who registered for the service ahead of time (over 46,000 individuals) and subscribers of Sky+ will have immediate access. Anyone else that's interested will have to wait for Sky's "full market launch" that's set to take place sometime early in 2017.