Thursday, October 20, 2011

Smart launches its All-Net postpaid plans with an amazing race

I've been on prepaid status with two of the mobile carriers since I left the corporate world. It has served me well because I could not fit my new mobile usage and lifestyle into any of the postpaid plans being offered then. Some were inflexible and offered call and text quantities that I knew I would not use. I did not want to be pegged to a fixed monthly fee which I could not maximize.

The invitation to join Smart's All-Net Amazing Race (while being introduced to its new All-Net offerings under its All-In plans made me curious and interested to join. I wondered if, this time, I would have a clear alternative to just remaining a prepaid subscriber forever. Of course, the other motivator in this whole amazing race thing (as this was my first ever amazing race) was the fact that my teammate was my own dear friend, Noemi. Also in our team dubbed the "Yellow team" were Ryan (another blogger friend) and Marlon (who I just met that day).

The tasks given to us were physically challenging. We had to bungee jump to get some phone numbers hanging from a tree (that task was assigned to Marlon, the tallest in our team). Then we had to call 3 numbers from those papers and show the call logs to the game marshal to get the next task.

(Marlon did such a great job on this one. I would have been an epic fail.)

Noemi, by stroke of luck, had just finished reviewing the Samsung Galaxy Y, the
very unit given to our team, so she was our designated texter.

Ryan makes the calls.

Task 2 was to run to Timezone and rack up a certain number of points on a dance machine, after which we had to text (and receive responses from) 5 random friends to get Task 3.

Texting frenzy...
Task 3 required us to look for a living statue at City Walk Two. By chance, I was in that very mall area just before the event buying a sports top so I knew exactly where to run to. We had to call someone from the living statue post to read out one of the Smart All-Net Postpaid Plans features.

The living statue and our task

Task 4 made us go on a shopping spree with a limited budget of P1,200. Luckily we saw Graffiti Tee which had tees on sale for P250 each. We grabbed our sizes, got the next task and ran out. Task 5 had us calling a Hong Kong number to get a password. Task 6 made us run back to Eastwood Mall, look for the Smart dog (which was the same dog I saw hanging around the Smart tent earlier) and guess its breed. We all thought it was a German Shepherd (wrong!!!). Its master was instructed not to tell us its breed but fast-thinking Ryan asked people around - and it turned out to be a bullmastiff. We had to go online using our team phone to show the marshal the flag of the dog's origin to get Task 7 (to assemble a puzzle) back at the Smart tent.

The clincher (Task 8) was to use another carrier's billing statement and compute the savings if the same call minutes and number of texts were used on an All-Net postpaid plan. Thanks to an accounting training which included doing math without a calculator, my brain went full blast. Yes, our team was the first to finish all the tasks. We won first place! And for that, each one of us got --- an HTC Wildfire S!

After the rush of the amazing race, Noemi and I lingered (because we also had to wind down and catch our breath from all the running) to talk with the Smart people. The tasks that they made us do actually was an introduction to just how much one can save with an All-Net postpaid plan:

* All-In plans beat out other plans because conventional plans tie you to a monthly FIXED fee for a certain combination of call minutes, text messages and internet use, whether you actually use them up or not. Value-added services outside your plan are billed to you ON TOP OF your monthly fee. All-in plans are just that, all in. What you subscribe to is what you pay, nothing more.

* You can tailor-fit your All-In plan from month to month. There are different mix-and-match services like Unlitalk, Unlitext, Unlisurf and IDD calls. Read more on All-In Plans HERE.

* All-Net plans are the latest services under the All-In plans.

* With Smart Postpaid All-Net Talk, subscribers can cut their postpaid call charges in half because this feature gives you 80 minutes of calls to ALL NETWORKS for only P250 for 30 days. That comes out to only P3.12 per minute compared to P7.50 per minute with other providers.

* With Smart Postpaid All-Net Text, you get 2,500 text messages to ALL NETWORKS for only P350 for 30 days. That is only P0.14 per SMS instead of the standard P1.00 per SMS charged by other networks.

* Data services under the Smart Postpaid All-In Plans also give the widest range of data volume on demand, from 25MB to 2GB.

* With the IDD bundle saver, you can make international calls at local rates, plus 5 minutes free for only P200.

Right now, I am already a frequent user of Smart's Always On data plans for my ipad because I need to be connected all the time when out of the house. Now, with Smart's All-Net Postpaid Plans, I will study carefully my usage for calls, texts and internet to see if it will save me more money compared to my current mobile costs.

I discovered that my Wildfire S could be turned into a personal hotspot. An All-In Postpaid Plan would mean cheaper calls and texts and if I activate the hotspot, I could share my internet connection from my phone to my ipad. That's a lot of potential savings!

What about you? Do you think the All-Net Plans are worth your second look?


Rolf said...

sounds more like a commercial than a well-though out analysis. Sorry. I did like your other blog posts, though.

Jane said...

Hi Rolf. Thank you for writing. Maybe you expected this to be an in-depth review of the postpaid plans but it's not. This post was meant to inform readers of what was newly available at that time. The amazing race introduced us to the different salient features of the plans at every pit stop we made and that's what I wrote up. Thanks for the feedback anyway.