MSE guide discussion - Piggybacking - need to keep your signal? You can still switch network

edited 7 April 2021 at 4:06PM in Mobiles
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MSE_ChrisMSE_Chris MSE Staff
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MSE Staff
edited 7 April 2021 at 4:06PM in Mobiles
Hi all,

Just starting a new thread as we've recently optimized our Piggybacking guide.

Piggerbackers have come a long way, with some now offering 5G, Wi-Fi calling, visual voicemail and '4G calling' (VoLTE).

Do you use any of these extra features?

Also, what's your experiences switching Sims? Do you find it easy to do?

Finally, has anyone switched to a piggybacker on a 1mth contract, then back to the main network for that hot 'new customer' deal?

We're keen to hear your piggybacking network experiences. 

Thanks,

MSE Chris

Replies

  • SupatrampSupatramp Forumite
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    Been with Virgin, who piggyback on EE, for several years now, as has my wife,  no problems, other than the terrible foreign CS.  5g doesn't apply where we are, wifi calling would be useful when the local EE mast goes loopy, but otherwise quite happy.  EE comes nowhere near Virgin on pricing, so don't no how that works.
    David.
  • Neil49Neil49 Forumite
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    Was with Plusnet (EE) for many years with only the lack of short code sms functionality being an issue. We moved house and the signal wasn't too good but others weren't much better or were worse but Plusnet didn't offer wifi calling. 

    Switched to Three on a cheap monthly contract and got wifi calling (which works well) and short code sms. Will move to ID Mobile (Three network) on a monthly rollover basis once the cheap contract with Three comes to an end. They also offer wifi calling. 
  • tinker411tinker411 Forumite
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    It depends who the provider is piggybacking on, but in general I've found - particularly on pay as you go - if you use a piggyback (MVNO) network there's either:

    something missing (e.g. 4G calling, WiFi calling)

    or

    there's something in place that the parent network doesn't have quite so much of (e.g. data speed caps, short code sms restrictions).

    There are exceptions of course - offhand; Sky Mobile has 4G calling and sms (mother O2 has 4G calling only, no sms over 4G there), ID mobile has 4G calling and WiFi calling on contract (but not on payg), and both Smarty and Voxi have 4G calling/sms and WiFi calling/sms (or are rolling it out in the case of the latter).

    I've used piggyback networks several times over the years - other than the something missing/something added bits above, the primary difference (as it is between the operators themselves) is customer service, which on some of the piggybacks can be quite... errrm... an 'interesting' experience at times.
  • Some of MNVOs and even packages on the parent network don't provide full network access.

    EE 800MHz 4G coverage is very valuable for indoor coverage but is only available for EE phone/sim only and BT Mobile customers.
  • AK47UKAK47UK Forumite
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    Supatramp said:
    Been with Virgin, who piggyback on EE, for several years now, as has my wife,  no problems, other than the terrible foreign CS.  5g doesn't apply where we are, wifi calling would be useful when the local EE mast goes loopy, but otherwise quite happy.  EE comes nowhere near Virgin on pricing, so don't no how that works.
    As of 2021, new customers signing up to Virgin are put on the Vodafone network and later this year existing customers will be switched to Voda too.

    This is what has brought me here today, I wanted to try and find info about whether this change means anyone in contract can cancel penalty free as Voda signal in my area is terrible. I signed my sister up recently, before I knew about this change, and she has been getting bad signal but as she is out of her cooling off period and was put on Vodafone from the start of the contract I am not sure if I can get her out of her sim only deal. 
  • ademadem Forumite
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    Hi, the comparisons that are made on MSE is great and helps with my decision making. Another criteria that might help with deciding which company to go for is if they allow tethering or hot spot on your phone. I've discovered that some do and some don't. In my case I do need tethering.
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