FreenetMobile, part of German MVNO Freenet’s brand Klarmobil, launched three new entry-level smartphone plans starting at €3.95 (US $4.60) per month with a 24-month contract.
The FreeSmart 400 plan, which runs on Deutsche Telekom’s network, includes 400 MB of mobile data at speeds of up to 21 Mbps as well as 100 minutes, and costs €3.95 (US $4.60) with a contract or €5.95 (US $6.93) without a contract. FreeSmart 1000, on Vodafone’s network, includes 1 GB of mobile data at up to 21.6 Mbps as well as 100 minutes and 100 texts, and costs €5.95 (US $6.93) with a contract or €7.95 (US $9.26) without a contract, including a discount.
Finally, FreeSmart 2000, also on the Vodafone network, offers 2 GB of mobile data at speeds of up to 42.2 Mbps as well as 100 minutes and 100 texts, and costs €7.95 (US $9.26) with or €9.95 (US $11.60) without a contract, including a discount.
The connection charge is a one-off fee of €9.95 (US $11.60) under the 24-month contracts, or €19.95 (US $23.24) if the plans are taken out on a rolling monthly basis. Roaming is blocked for the first six weeks, and then activated automatically.
FreenetMobile, which runs on two different MNOs’ networks, is offering some boldly priced packages in an aggressive grab for German MVNO market share. The prices are about as low as they go, which should prove attractive to members of the heavily-courted youth demographic. And given the preference of young users for data over voice, the various plans all offer relatively large amounts of data and quite small amounts of included voice minutes. The rather meager texting offerings should pose little problem to customers, considering that most of them are likely to prefer messaging services, such as WhatsApp, that use data instead.
The operator is wise, also, to offer lowered rates if customers subscribe to 24-month contracts and higher data speed in the higher-end FreeSmart 2000 options. Since many of FreenetMobile’s competitors publish much higher advertised speeds, the questions for users, though, will have to be whether the real-world data speeds are fast enough for their needs, which will certainly include data-hungry streaming services, and whether the coverage is good enough. If the answer is yes on both scores, FreenetMobile will doubtless be able to garner a sizable number of new budget-minded customers with its FreeSmart plans.