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Update:The phone is free. The $6,000 is for voice, SMS & data

Less than an hour ago we just posted that Econet is selling a free Galaxy I9000 on contract  for US $6,000 payable in $250 installments over 2 years. Yes, we know that statement is bit confusing but that’s the information on their website right now. In the article we came up with the assumption that since the actually local market value of the phone is about $480, the rest, $230 a month, is for data.

We just got some clarification from Econet. Basically their website has incomplete information on the deal. The $6,000 contract part is correct. However the deal is that you get $250 worth of voice calls, SMS and mobile broadband data  every month. Effectively this does make the Samsung Galaxy I9000 free, as in free. Here’s an image we received to confirm this:

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The Econet contact we communicated with says to walk out of the deal before the 2 year contract has expired, a subscriber will just pay the residual value of the handset and leave. If a subscriber doesn’t use up the $250 allocation of their data and airtime in a month, it rolls over to the next month until the end of the contract, upon which a subscriber can choose to roll it over to another contract or just start downloading movies.

To put the value in simpler terms, say you split your usage equally between voice calls and data (we’ll assume you use WhatsApp for SMS), you’ll get about 9 hours of talk time and  1.6GB of data every month for your $6,000.

We’re told the deal is targeted at business guys and that Econet is in the testing phase of the subsidisation model common in developed markets. Lower income users have other contract deals available starting at $20 a month.

What do you think? fair deal?


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15 thoughts on “Update:The phone is free. The $6,000 is for voice, SMS & data

  1. This deal makes absolutely no sense on several levels.
    1) With the $250 price point they have set, they are marketin a phone that is now 2 years old & out of date, to individuals who can easily pay for newer model phones if they can afford $250 a month on talk & data costs.

    2) In Zimbabwe where getting decent 3G & Edge coverage is almost impossible who is really going to use 1.6GB on data on their mobile phone. I find it hard to believe anyone will even come close to this figure. Even for first world 4G/LTE networks 1.6GB worth of data is a lot.

    We all know mobile contracts are meant to lock users into a scheme where they pay the operator more money over a longer period of time & helps reduce customer turnover , but Econet seriously need to go back to the drawing board & offer its customers decent packages. This offering is insulting.

    Also whatever became of Econet becoming a registered Apple product re seller? If they swapped out that Galaxy & replaced it with an iPhone 4S 64GB , they might be more successful in duping its clients

  2. $6,000 for voice and infernet???? Rather buy a stand in Zengeza and invest in ur future….

  3. This econet people are clueless of real technology dynamics:

    What happens when you finish that $250 before month-end?

    With internet downloads at tortoise  speeds in Zimbabwe, who is going to full enjoy that?

    Lets say its fast, if you finish you allocated data package, how much are they going to charge per mb?

    Good luck to those with money and Econet, at least they might enjoy this since they dont have competition at all, they might as well make the most of it whilst they still can.

  4. This does not make any sense at all, these people are not from planet earth.
    7933-16 Sizinda

  5. Its like those high-end, expensive medical aid packages. Usually, its the company that pays for exec’s phone bills/packages.

  6. If I save $250 for 2 months..I can buy the same phone and avoid paying econet $250 for 24 good months…Econet should revise their contract, its a good idea but they should not be that greedy, I would agree to pay $50 per month..in UK you can get such deals for 18pounds a month wich is affordable,  http://www.mobiles.co.uk/

  7. Haha this is has to be the epitomy of econets idioticness and thats being said after their ridiculous data charges from day one! I was in Dubai last month and believe me when I say you can get that phone or even way better if you add about $50 to the $250. This is an absolute tragedy from Econet..hope someone finally gets fired for these stupid decisions that make the company such a mockery despite having the potential to be zimbabwe’s best and most trusted brand.

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