With the sudden hype on Circles.Life due to their new promotion (20GB for S$20) going on, it is normal for any Singaporean to have the urge to switch their service provider. We too had some sleepless nights thinking whether hopping on the hype train is a good idea (Maybe a little exaggerated). Here’s a short list of factors to consider that may help you make a better decision now or in future.
Disclaimer: This is a non-technical article/review, and neither are we professionals in this area. The thought process or review will be organised into 5 simple steps. We will try to be as objective as we can.
Step 1: The Brief About Circles.Life
Is the new telco using their own infrastructure? For the case of Circles.Life, it is technically not our new telco as it is borrowing or leasing the infrastructure from M1. Hence, if your primary reason for switching is due to the regular breakdowns in your telco or poor network coverage in certain areas, be prepared to be very disappointed as these problems may not go away with the switch.
Related: Google, How Much Data Do You Handle?
Step 2: The Price
Question: Are you a heavy data user? Or tend to exceed your data limits on a monthly basis? If your answer is yes, go for the plan and don’t look back (Read why in Step 3). You can even get more free data from referrals. If you are trying to convince yourself that you need this much data but won’t in actual fact use so much of it consistently every month, this may be your biggest regret of the month (Well, since you can cancel contract anytime after that month).
Take a closer look; the ad stated 20GB for S$20. But they also said that this promotion (Fineprint) is an add-on to the basic plan. The basic plan already costs S$28, and you would need to spend a minimum of S$48 a month to even have all that data (Still an attractive deal though). There is also a registration fee of S$18 upon online checkout (considered very cheap).
Quick Info on the Basic Plan: Includes up to 6GB data if you port-in, 100 minutes of incoming and outgoing call time, unlimited Whatsapp excluding video calls and 4G. Outgoing SMS will be similar to a prepaid SIM card, S$0.05 per text but you ain’t gonna use that anyway.
Depending on your situation, you might or might not save…
You could easily overshoot S$48/month if you were to add $2/month for free incoming calls. And do be aware that this price is just a plan. Eg. Adding iPhone 7 Plus at S$59.08/Month and your total monthly bill would be S$107.08, not a lovely number to watch if you don’t even use even 4GB of data every month.
To sum up step 2, Circles.Life seems pretty viable if you are the kind who doesn’t like to switch phones every two years. However, it would be unwise if you are planning to intentionally waste mobile data usage even though you have Wi-Fi connections available. It’s like cheating and tricking your mind to think that this scheme is a value for money one when you can easily save up all that additional bills with continuing your natural lifestyle.
Step 3: The Possibilities
Use some logic. If a new telco enters the market to threaten the existence of other big players, what would happen? Retaliation. That’s guaranteed. It is good to take note that some of the Big Telcos like M1 have already begun to offer lower prices for their mobile plans while SingTel is advertising quite a lot of their SIM-only plans too (S$20 for 3GB with many affordable upsize options). You shouldn’t be surprised if you were to find out your old telco came up with a better, more affordable plan. Our suggestion: Wait if you are patient.
Step 4: The Trap
A lot of us are reluctant to switch over to a new Telco. One of the Main Reasons is because we are bound to some sort of family bundle plan. Family Bundles offer lots of perks to your whole family concerning discounted rates on mobile, cable and home internet broadband, free data on certain days and more. Most of the times, many Singaporeans are better off sticking to their old Telcos due to this reason. Switching to another Telco is tough. It may cost you more in the scenario where you are still subscribed to the old Telco for other services. Try not to sound like you are preaching when it comes to convincing your whole family to switch with you.
Step 5: The Execution
After considering Steps 1-4, consider whether it is worth the hassle to execute the switch. It doesn’t hurt to try out the new Telco and compare it yourself whether it is a better solution.
Every Telco in Singapore has its different problems and limitations, Circles.Life isn’t exempted either. Especially when it is still new to the market. Imagine a Telco with no physical store for you to go to…
Here is an Infographic to Sum it Up
Plot Twist: We joined Circles.Life anyway.