Telecel Zimbabwe launched a new promotion dubbed ‘Mega Juice’, at the weekend. The new Mega Juice card, which costs US $1, gives the subscriber $2 bonus air time, effectively giving away three dollars worth of air time for the price a dollar.
The Mega Juice air time however is only valid for 24 hours from the time the air time is loaded or, in Telecel jargon, from the time the mobile phone is ‘juiced up’. As is the case with such promotions, this is valid for calls within the Telecel network.
Using the Mega Juice card they can talk to other Telecel subscribers for about 13 minutes for one dollar. With an ordinary air time card they would only be able to chat for about four minutes.
If a call is made to a different network, the cost of the call comes not from the bonus air time but from the ordinary air time, which will include the one dollar ordinary time on the Mega Juice card and other ordinary air time already loaded onto the customer’s prepaid account.
A Telecel spokesperson said the Mega Juice card had been introduced as part of the company’s moves to give customers more value for their money, or, in other words, ‘to attract more subscribers’. The move follows Telecel’s slashing of the cost of calls to several major international destinations to the cost of a local call.
The Telecel spokesperson added, “We want to offer products and services that are closer to what people enjoy in other countries, both in terms of quality and price”.
I’m tempted to say they should probably work harder on this ‘want’ here. Econet to date remains the only mobile operator offering mobile Internet services. Telecel has said they’re working on something, but have been making the headlines with issues entirely divorced from service delivery.