TalkMobile is a virtual network operated by the Carphone Warehouse. It replaced the existing Carphone Warehouse virtual networks Mobile World & Fresh Mobile and one in five Carphone Warehouse prepay sales are now on TalkMobile. There are already well over 300,000 customers.
The operator launched in 2007 and offers both low-cost short-term contracts and PAYG deals which can be augmented with add-on rewards of voice minutes and texts. Its contracts are often attractive as they are shorter than its rivals. As it is part of Carphone Warehouse, TalkMobile often has attractive deals on new handsets. TalkMobile uses the Vodafone cell towers and infrastructure for its network backbone.
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TalkMobile is a relatively new virtual network that intends to compete on price. As well as having some great contract deals on new handsets, its Essentials tariff is an extremely good value PAYG option with voice minutes just 8p each and text only 4p. These rates make it easily one of the cheapest networks operating in the UK. They also give a small amount of internet for a cheap price daily and it’s still quite cheap even if you go over the limit. The Rewards tariff is much worse value for regular use but does give you the option of free minutes, texts or even international calls.
TalkMobile uses the Vodafone network and the coverage is great in most areas of the country and they have a decent 3G signal. They operate a good, well-informed phone customer service which rarely forces an automated system on you and has short waiting time. The impressive customer service also means that they provide very fast number transfers once you’ve got your PAC. One of the best things about TalkMobile is that all their handsets come from the Carphone Warehouse so are not loaded with bloatware and are fully unlocked for any network. A great example to other carriers.
Overall, TalkMobile offers a good service at a very cheap rate using its Essentials tariff. As well as offering good value, they have decent customer service and fast number porting. On all their PAYG tariffs, the half price calls and texts between TalkMobile customers is a huge boon too. While they are not the very cheapest network, they offer much better prices than the majority of their competitors.
At a glance
TalkMobile offers PAYG customers two options – the Rewards tariff or the cut-price Essentials tariff. Both include mobile internet for only 25p per day (with a fair use limit of 25MB per day) and both tariffs also provide half price calls and texts to other TalkMobile customers. These are all great deals we’re delighted to see offered as standard.
The Rewards tariff is quite interesting as, like the Vodafone Freebees offer, you get a bonus allowance every time you top up. These include free minutes, unlimited texts (subject to a fair use policy of 3000 every 30 days) or even included international minutes. Some rewards are better than other but, for example, if you really need effectively unlimited texts, they can prove to be great value.
However, unfortunately, the call charges are very expensive even for a regular mobile network let alone a virtual one. Calls are 25p/minute to UK landlines and mobiles and texts are quite pricey too at 10p each. MMS is also quite expensive as it’s 30p per message and they even charge 50p per call for talking to customer service. The good things are that calls fall to 10p/minute if you’re calling other TalkMobile customers while texts drop to 5p each, voicemail is free and mobile internet is 25p/day for 25MB.
The more attractive option is the Essential tariff which offers some of the lowest prices available. UK calls are only 8p at all times while texts are just 4p each. And it gets even better as these prices are slashed in half when you’re communicating with other TalkMobiles. Yes, that’s right, texts are just 2p each and calls are 4p per minute. You still get the 25p internet deal but voicemail is 8p per minute and MMS are still 30p each.
Even so, these are some great rates and the Essentials deal makes TalkMobile one of the best value networks going.
The Rewards tariff offers four options for your top-up bonuses.
Textmania is the best which gives you unlimited texts for a set period every time you add new credit. The way it works is the more you top-up, the longer you get free unlimited texts for – £5 buys you 7 days, £10 gives you two weeks all the way up to a whole month for just £15.
Another option is Chatterbox which gives you 30 UK minutes that last 7 days for a £5 top-up, 60 minutes for 14 days for £10 and 120 minutes that expire after 30 days if you buy £20 credit.
The FamilyFusion reward gives you landline minutes and unlimited SMS for your top-up – £5 gives you texts and 50 minutes calls for 7 days while £20 gives you texts and 200 minutes for 30 days.
Finally, the Globetalker reward gives you free international minutes for a variety of countries for 30 days. The number of minutes ranges from 75 for a £10 top-up to 300 for a £50 top-up.
As ever, please carefully check all the terms and conditions before signing up to these rewards.
To compare TalkMobile’s latest pricing for both of its tariffs with that of other networks, please see our conclusive price comparison page.
TalkMobile runs on the Vodafone network. Please see our TalkMobile coverage page to learn the network coverage in your area. For more information, compare it with other mobile phone networks’ coverage.
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