An upcoming telco price war is imminent. Not because of the bid by MyRepublic to be the upcoming fourth telco. Instead, a new mobile operator just stole that thunder.
But what's even more shocking is the fact that their plans will let you call and send messages on WhatsApp for free. That means your data isn't sucked up when you call someone or send more cat photos and videos to your friends via WhatsApp.
The surprise launch wasn't sprung out of nowhere though. Circles.Life is a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) that rides on the existing infrastructure. In this case, they're loaning M1's network. Even so, their plans are vastly different from M1 and even Singtel or StarHub.
Besides the abovementioned unlimited WhatsApp, the telco also gives you 3GB of data and 100 minutes of talktime at S$28 per month. Caller ID is also tossed in as a freebie, pretty important if you're dodging calls from would-be stalkers. SMS? You don't need that, but if you really want to, you can add S$4 for 100 SMS per month.
Not enough data? You can top-up online as you use, so there's no worry of busting your limit and paying excess data charges. Monitoring and adjusting your usage is all done via an app so you can customise the plan as you use it through the month.
Unlike the other telcos, you get to add 100MB, 250MB, 500MB or 1GB at S$1, S$2 S$3.50 or S$6 respectively. In comparison that is way lower than if you bust your data limit at S$10.70 per GB with the three telcos.
If you're worried that you're stuck with Circles.Life for two years, there's none of that nonsense here. You're free to stop at anytime with its contract-free plans, which Singtel, StarHub and M1 have launched recently.
While that means you won't get a subsidised smartphone, a benefit from a two-year contract, you can still purchase a phone from Circles. Life on an installment plan with 0% interest.
Signing up is also free from hassle. For one, you don't have to physically go to a shop to do that. Instead, just sign up online and they'll deliver the SIM card to you, free of charge. Yes, you read that right, you don't have to pay a single cent for the SIM card or the delivery. What about retaining your number? They'll do that at no charge too.
But if all that doesn't entice you to sign up, here's one final carrot. Registering with Circles.Life before 31 May will also give you a chance to win six months of free mobile service.
To be honest, there's no harm trying out this new telco since you're free to jump ship whenever you want.