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Unboxing the Telecel Hie Bundles

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Zimbabwean Telecoms

We recently talked about the airtime-for-houses promo that local mobile network operator Telecel Zimbabwe launched. But that wasn’t the only new thing that came from the red network.

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The Telecel Hie Social Bundles were also introduced with $5 and $10 options that give on and off net voice minutes, SMSes, access to WhatsApp with Facebook and Twitter thrown in for the $10 bundle.

BenefitsHie 5 ($5 bundle)Hie 10 ($10 bundle)
WhatsAppMonthly AccessMonthly Access
Facebook-Monthly Access
Twitter-Monthly Access
On Net Voice minutes60150
Off- net Voice1525
SMS25300

The value proposition for subscribers is clear.  Telecel has been generous with voice, SMS, and social media access and it is outpacing its competition with this offer. While both bundles offer savings on airtime purchases, the $10 bundle is easily the better pick of the two, considering the access to Facebook, generous free minutes and, of course, the free Twitter.

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With this very clear attempt at boosting Average Revenue Per User (ARPU), Telecel also gets to make a noble attempt at winning back lost subscribers and hopefully, cultivates some form of loyalty from its subscribers, something which has troubled the operator significantly over the past 18 months.

Comments around the new bundles on social media have been lukewarm positive. However, other subscribers raised a very valid point which applies to all mobile operators – Instead of pouring more effort into these promos, why not just offer cheaper access to broadband? This is probably the same line of thought that Econet has been going for with its Daily and Dream Bundles.

Doing that would increase the use of mobile internet services and bolster the one line of business that has a clear future for telecoms. like other special packages, this piece-meal offer that comes with the Facebook and WhatsApp bundles still feels like an extended use of a temporary solution for shifting broadband consumption patterns.

It’s too early for this new social media cocktail to be tapped as the new solution for all of Telecel’s old problems. However, it has managed to offer some other reason for multiple SIM card owners to use that discarded Telecel line.


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11 thoughts on “Unboxing the Telecel Hie Bundles

  1. Telecel doesnt listen…its nt abt whatsapp or voice bundles its the data issue…there isnt even a single promotion on data from telecel and they will continue to lose customers to econet

  2. Looking at the Facebook comments on Telecel’s page its nice to see that the users are finally waking up and demanding real data. I just have one issue about these bundles. When Econet started with their Extra and Lite Whatsapp/Facebook bundles, I did briefly switch to Telecel and I noticed one interesting quirk with their system. If I was on a Whatsapp bundle and then got “expired” because I had used up my “fair usage” MB allowance, it wasn’t simply a case of just juicing up and loading a new bundle. I would still be on that exhausted bundle, and had to go through a mini process to unsubscribe that bundle and then load a brand new one. So my question – is this gonna be the same with these Hie bundles?

      1. Get a ZOL MIFI WiMAX dongle $49 a month unlimited. Small enough to fit in a pocket. Gets the job done in most areas. No funny issues for app calling etc.

  3. Telecel FINALLY came to Mberengwa, but they seem to be still on a learning curve on straight data. These promotions our MNOs keep running along lotto lines promising clients to win this and that are an insult to serious DATA conscious clients who would give an arm and a leg for faster broadband with value for money MBs/GBs. Yes the generality of local users love limited access bundles, but serious data customers DONOT want to be limited to Whatsapp, Facebook or Twitter! They want volume DATA!

  4. “….free minutes and, of course, the free Twitter…”

    Ooh! So its called free twitter and free that, free this when its done by Telecel or other SP?

    But when Econet does to their preferred site then all the hell get broken about net-neutrality hogwash!!

  5. Some of these service providers have unfair practices. Just like Allaz who was hit with the “Fair Usage expired” line on Telecel, i have my own issue with NetOne. After being promised unlimited Facebk and Whatsapp connectivity on their $5 bundle, i realised i was failing to play videos on Facebk or make Messenger calls. When i called the call centre i was told that the Facebk bundle no longer supports video and voice. I was just like “WTF”. So i pay a bundle just to chat and check out the news feed. Bollocks i say!!!

  6. Unlimited data plan for a flat fee…I used to stay in south africa was using a blackberry and wouldn’t mind paying R60 a month for BIS … I would normally north of 6 to 8 gigs a month…was on 8ta network..any network operator to introduce such or like volume data…would grow their customer base.

    College n university student would benefit

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