Review of CovaU mobile phone plans
CovaU is perhaps best known as an electricity and gas provider, but the company now also offers a range of SIM Only, postpaid mobile phone plans. In this regard, CovaU is a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) operating on the Vodafone 4G network. CovaU says it released a set of phone plans to better address the needs of families, as well as small businesses. To that end, CovaU provides a range of multi-SIM plans all bundled together for one easy bill. Let’s see what CovaU has to offer in this review.
CovaU mobile phone plans
CovaU offers no individual phone plans. Its smallest bundle is a three-SIM one. Its plans are designed to be shared amongst the family, or employees, and all data is pooled together. So tell Jill from accounting not to use all of the data on watching Girls season six.
- All bundles come with unlimited calls and texts, plus varying amounts of additional value for international calls, video calls, PXT and directory assistance.
- A varying amount of money for a ‘tech fund’: Think of this like a sinking fund to purchase mobile phones through COVAU with.
Let’s get a better overview:
|Plan (SIM cards included)||Inclusions||Cost Per Month|
|Basic 3 (3)||5GB data, $100 extra value||$99|
|Pro 5 (5)||10GB data, $300 extra value, $1500 tech fund||$249|
|Pro 10 (10)||15GB data, $500 extra value, $2500 tech fund||$499|
|Premier 20 (20)||30GB, $1000 extra value, $5000 tech fund||$999|
Source: CovaU website
For a family, we suspect the Basic and Pro 5 plans will be sufficient, but keep in mind the data pooling feature. Excess use can be mitigated, but the chance of one family member using much more than their fair share is quite high. If you’re Steve Martin in Cheaper by the Dozen, then the Premier 20 bundle may be up your alley. Conversely, if you’re running a small business and want everyone to have a work phone then any of these plans could be useful. Keep in mind that you can add an extra SIM at any time for $25. As for the tech fund, it remains to be seen as to what kinds of phones you can purchase with this, but it’s a great inclusion nonetheless that can ease the burden of paying for your company’s mobile plans.
What else do you get?
There are some other little interesting perks you get with CovaU mobile plans:
- One account and one invoice: This makes for one easy bill.
- SIM card flexibility: Three-in-one SIM packs – standard, micro and nano. You can also add a SIM to your plan when needed for an extra $25.
- Excess data is $10 per gigabyte.
- Usage monitoring tool: usage alert and control (account administrator can allow and restrict access to data and included value… we’re looking at you, Jill).
- Customer service team: Call centre is available 8am to 8pm AEST every day.
- Bilingual customer service: Chinese and English.
- Sign up through sales teams in NSW and Victoria, or online. Alternatively, if you are already with COVAU for your energy needs then you can also easily add on a SIM bundle that way.
How does CovaU compare to other mobile providers?
CovaU exists in a pretty interesting segment of the market in that not many other service providers offer multiple SIM cards all on one bill. However, the major telcos – Vodafone, Telstra and Optus do offer data sharing, which is much the same premise. Alternatively, while there are small MVNOs out there offering more data for less, what you’ll find is that they are for private use only – not business use. It could pay to check the terms and conditions before going wild buying 20 SIM cards.
Vodafone Data Sharing
Data sharing is a feature available on all of its ‘Red’ plans. The main plan of which all others are based around must be on a 12 or 24 month Red plan. Other SIMs bundled with this plan can be either mobile plans, or mobile broadband products. So, if it’s extra data you crave, then you can get an extra 1GB for only $10. Alternatively, any old Red plan will do. As it stands, Vodafone looks to be pretty decent value with this type of thing. While you’ll pay more per SIM compared to CovaU, you will get some hefty data inclusions, so Jill in accounting could in fact watch Girls season six. Here’s a snapshot of some plans you can bundle together:
Optus Data Sharing
Similar to Vodafone, Optus offers data sharing on a select set of plans – this time its ‘My Plan Plus’ subscriptions. There are no extra costs, and with Optus you can also keep an eye out for some extra entertainment perks that periodically come with its plans.
Telstra Data Sharing
Telstra’s data sharing options are a little more restrictive and complex. Your first plan must be a ‘Go Mobile’ plan, which starts at $55 a month. Then an additional phone plan costs $40 a month, and you can only bundle a maximum of five SIM cards together. You can only change your plan combinations every 60 days, and you’ll be slugged an extra $5 a month for the privilege of the one bill.
Is a CovaU mobile SIM bundle a good idea?
This is potentially a great idea, especially if your energy needs are already with CovaU. Why not have a ‘one-stop shop’ for both your energy and mobile phone needs? As it is a pretty peculiar plan bundling service, it’s only fair to compare it to the Big 3 telcos’ data sharing options. CovaU certainly works out pretty favourably – especially compared to Telstra – as the extra value included, as well as a tech fund, make it pretty enticing indeed. However, while more expensive per plan, Vodafone, Optus and Telstra often offer lots more data with extra perks.
We imagine if you’re running a small business then even 30GB will be eaten up pretty quickly among 20 people. Of course, you as an administrator can restrict access, but still the Big 3 telcos may offer more data for comparable costs per month. Either way, it’s worth comparing a range of different providers against COVAU and see if it’s worth it in your eyes or not.