Who’s Feeding On the Carcass Of Kogan Mobile?

With the demise of Kogan Mobile in the prepaid market due to provider ispONE going into administration there is now a large number of consumers who have to find a new mobile telco. Kogan itself has said that it will refund customers on a pro rata basis, but people still have to hook up with somebody new. So what is on offer?

By Mike Wheeler

 

With the demise of Kogan Mobile in the prepaid market due to provider ispONE going into administration there is now a large number of consumers who have to find a new mobile telco. Kogan itself has said that it will refund customers on a pro rata basis, but people still have to hook up with somebody new. So what is on offer?

 

Of the main players, Optus came out on Monday and said if people transfer their Kogan number to Optus’s prepaid $30 or more plans, the company will double the standard talk time and data allowance on those plans. However, Kogan customers need to be aware that their mobile phones used the Telstra network and might not work as effectively on the Optus network due to the different frequencies. Optus 3G utilises the 900MHz and 2100Mhz frequencies, while Telstra utilises the 850MHz and 2100MHz frequencies.

 

Of the other major players – Vodafone and Virgin Mobile – neither have put out any plans to specifically cash-in on the drama surrounding ispONE’s demise.

 

Of the smaller resellers in the market, AldiMobile is a company that was in a similar situation to Kogan in that it uses the iBoss platform, which allows them to piggyback on Telstra’s 3G network. And while Telstra has thrown Aldimobile a lifeline, there are issues with how they are going to integrate AldiMobile SIM cards onto the 3G network because the iBoss platform is no longer available. It appears Telstra is working on a solution but there has been nothing publically said about it.

 

Boost is another junior player offering a similar service to Kogan, and they have been receiving many calls from former Kogan customers. Its service is also hosted on the Telstra network after splitting from Optus at the beginning of the year. They are currently offering deals through retailer Harvey Norman.

 

Finally there is Yatango, which offers up SIM-only plans and piggybacks on the Optus 3G network. It put out a press release trying to reassure consumers that smaller players in the market are here to stay and that they are a worthy alternative to the major players and not to be put off about what happened to Kogan. As with Optus, customers will have to make sure their handset is compatible with Optus frequencies.

 

Note: Telstra has put out a statement saying that it has reached a deal with ispONE customer AldiMobile, but was at an impasse with Kogan Mobile, who can’t find a wholesaler to take up its service.

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