Swiss operator Sunrise said that it has launched an offer of 5G connectivity at up to 2 Gbps for seven days. The Prepaid Unlimited 7 Days tariff includes unlimited data, calls and texts at a price of CHF 19.90 (US $20.11). Customers can opt for the prepaid tariff by texting “7days” to the number 5522.
The option is renewed automatically after a week but is deactivated if the available credit is less than CHF 19.90. The other two prepaid options, Prepaid Unlimited 30 and 90 days, offer surfing at up to 300 Mbps with 4G/LTE.
As 5G networks are rolled out across the more highly developed markets in the world, one challenge that operators will experience is convincing customers to sign up for the next-generation service. To be sure, many will be attracted by the novelty and by the promises of sky-high data speeds, quite a few others are likely to believe that the speeds they get from their current 4G/LTE or 4.5G connectivity are more than sufficient for their needs. They may therefore be unwilling to make the transition to 5G and resist purchasing compatible devices.
In order to ensure the greatest uptake and to maximize both revenue and network traffic over 5G, mobile operators will doubtless wish to incentivize customers and potential customers as much as possible. Sunrise’s Prepaid Unlimited 7 Days seems to be a good way to achieve this goal. It offers Swiss consumers the opportunity to sample the operator’s 5G network for a period that is short-term but still substantial enough to get a feeling for what kind of impact it will have on their digital lives.
This offer is not simply a one-off promotional trial period; it is available at any time the user wishes to prepay. So even after using it for a week, a Sunrise customer does not need to feel bound to commit to changing his or her current plan with the operator. Users can get accustomed to 5G slowly, if that is what pleases them. If they feel that they only need 5G for certain reasons at certain times, then this offer allows them that flexibility.
Ultimately, the use of 5G will almost certainly lead to the phasing out of 4G, as has happened with 2G and, to a large extent, 3G. Until then, operators, even in affluent markets, will need to be accommodating to customers with regard to the basis on which the new high-speed service is offered.
And speaking of high speed, as we have pointed out before, the rate of uptake of 5G will depend on the extent to which the promises of gigabyte speed are fulfilled in everyday life.