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Why should we care about making the air fair?

Oh, sweet phones. Always there for us. They are life. They’re attached to our hands, they sleep in our beds. They put us in touch with friends who are oceans away, and even teach us how to code or speak Finnish in our spare time.

We can’t exist without our phones. Or the airwaves that let us have conversations, send messages, watch our favourite videos, listen to our music and so much more.
Spectrum – aka our national airwaves – isn’t something most of us think about in our daily lives… or, well, ever.

But we really should. Considering the role our smartphones and tablets play in every aspect of our daily functioning, spectrum is a vital resource (possibly not as essential as the air we breathe, but pretty darn close). Spectrum is responsible for a network’s reliability, speed and service. Not to mention the cost of your monthly phone bill.

Consider this: in the whole of the developed world, only Thailand and Malaysia have a larger imbalance of the airwaves amongst mobile operators when compared to the UK.

You may have seen the recent news that Ofcom, which will be selling a slice of our national airwaves next year, has blocked BT – who already owns approximately 42% of the mobile spectrum – from acquiring any more 2.3 Ghz range airwaves in the 4G spectrum.

However, no measures have been put in place to stop BT from increasing its share of spectrum in the future, or to cap BT from bidding for higher 3.4 Ghz, 5G frequency at a later date.

The truth is, BT/EE already own too much. And when we conducted a YouGov survey*, 65% of UK customers told us they support a proposed cap on how much spectrum one company can own.

We’re petitioning for a fairer split of the mobile spectrum, and Three UK has joined forces with TalkTalk, CityFibre, Federation of Communication Services and Gamma to get behind a campaign to urge Ofcom to ensure that no network can own more than 30% of all mobile spectrum

This campaign, known as Make the Air Fair, asks all supporters to send a letter supporting the 30% cap on network airwaves to Ofcom CEO Sharon White (#TellSharon).

This will mean faster speeds, lower prices and greater coverage regardless of your provider in the future. If Ofcom doesn’t address the imbalance at next year’s auction, patchy coverage, poor service and rising costs might become an everyday reality.

And that’s something we can’t even bear to think about.

To keep our airwaves fair, you can tell Ofcom to do something about it by signing the consultation at maketheairfair.org.

*Three and YouGov conducted a survey into consumer attitudes towards service providers. All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 2171 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken October 17-18, 2016. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK adults (aged 18+).

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Three customers save £1.3 billion in roaming charges

 

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We love a good stat here at Three towers. Especially when it involves over a billion pounds. Millions are good, but BILLIONS? Well billions simply cannot be ignored.

We’ve today announced that since the launch of our Feel at Home service in 2013, we’ve saved Three customers more than £1.3 billion in roaming charges. Imagine getting that bill?! 😉

Feel at Home was launched to protect customers from unfairly high roaming charges. Since then, we’ve saved customers on average £330 every year. Which is enough to get you return flights to Dubai. Or a 2-night stay in a 4 star hotel in Vegas. Or designer luggage. You get the idea.

Read More.

Exclusive network tariff partnership with Honor just announced.

Anyone following our Social Media over the last few days will know that we’ve been over in Barcelona for Mobile World Congress 2015. We’ve seen lots of exciting new phones and gadgets and heard from some amazing speakers.

But the highlight for us has to be that we’re now able to announce an exclusive network tariff partnership with Honor for their latest flagship phone; the Honor 6+. The 6+ is the first Honor device that we’ll range and we couldn’t be more excited. You guys will be able to buy one on a variety of contracts for the first time in the UK.

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It’s time to sort switching.

There’s nothing worse than breaking up with someone who just doesn’t want to let go. You want to move on, but instead you’re bombarded with a hundred reasons not to leave. Sound familiar?

Like any other relationship, the one you have with your mobile provider can be harmonious; but when you decide to set your sights somewhere else, the break-up can be tricky. We feel that switching mobile operators needn’t be so complicated, so we’re doing something about it.

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Dry your eyes.

Not too long ago it felt as though you couldn’t pick up a paper without another story of a hard-done-by customer, all stern-faced, holding up a ridiculous telephone bill. The culprit was very often international roaming or the 30 times you had to call your internet service provider on their 0800 number to get a problem sorted.

You might be forgiven for thinking that ‘bill shock’ is now a thing of the past. For the most part, those crazy £3000 bills are. But we’ve recently learnt that over half (54%) of EE, Vodafone and O2 customers have experienced bill shock in the last year- to the tune of £213 each! Not newspaper worthy, but still enough to cause considerable dismay among customers. These bills are often the result of high or unexpected roaming fees or charges for 0800 numbers.

To highlight the eye-watering charges of other networks, we’ve today launched a range of Kleenex-style tissues made using the recycled bills from our competitors. He he 🙂

Read More.

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Awards and stuff.

We’ve got some fantastic stats to share with you. Who doesn’t like a good stat?!

We know you all love the internet like we do, so it comes as no surprise that Three customers are using more data than customers on any other network.

Being free to tweet and take selfies to your heart’s content is what a great mobile experience is all about, which is why we’re ahead of the game when it comes to data usage. The average Three customer uses a whopping 2.6GB of data, up from 2.2GB at the same point last year. This is great news as it shows that Three customers are getting the most out of their smartphones with our 3G and 4G network.

Of course, more data usage means more data traffic and recently we revealed that we’re leading the way when it comes to mobile data traffic too. Enders, an industry analyst, has found that we have the largest share of mobile data traffic (45%) in the UK. That’s a lot of tweets and status updates.

We’ve also been winning our fair share of awards recently. Which is nice 🙂 From Broadband Genie’s top accolade , to least complained about network according to Ofcom. Most recently, and something we’re especially proud of, we won MacWorld’s number 1 network for iPhone award, winning every single category – best 3G network, best 4G network, best network coverage, fastest network and the most reliable overall.

In addition, Root Metrics have today released their latest network reliability index, we’re pleased to say we shared top rankings in 12 out of the 16 major cities including London and Manchester. And we came first outright in Scotland and Northern Ireland. High five!

In the grand tradition of music makers, we’re not in this for the awards, but it’s great to know our hard work is paying off and that you guys have other tangible ways of seeing why we might be the network for you.

Step in to the light and say ‘hello three’.

Order online, collect in store.

You’ve ordered your shiny new phone and it’s due to be delivered the next day. You’re beyond excited, but there’s a problem. Your boss won’t let you take the day off to wait for the delivery at such short notice, bad times.

That’s where our fab new Click and Collect process comes in. If you order online, you now have the option of collecting your precious new hardware in one of 330 participating Three stores, whenever you flippin like (well, within 8 days anyway!) If you order before 4pm it’ll be ready for you to collect the very next day. Can’t be bad.

Apart from saving time and hassle, collecting in store has other benefits. If setting up your new phone seems a bit daunting; maybe you’re moving to a new operating system or you want to make absolutely sure you don’t lose your photos and music, our store staff will be on hand to help you out and get you started.

So, get clicking and collect at your leisure.

You can find out more about this service here.

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