It seems that mobile retailer Phones 4u is ready to move beyond just selling smartphones and tablets, and is preparing to launch its own mobile virtual network. The new service will be called LIFE Mobile and will utilize EE as its partner.
Phone 4u’s LIFE Mobile is the 25th MVNO to form a partnership with EE, with competitors including offerings from Ikea and Virgin. Phone 4u says they went with EE specifically because of the “strength of its network, its strong industry reputation, and its flexible and technologically advanced MVNO platform.” While it wasn’t specifically mentioned, EE also has the widest 3G coverage in the UK.
The new cellular service will be sold and managed out of Phone 4 U’s current retail locations and will utilize the existing 2G and 3G services found through EE. Unfortunately, LIFE Mobile will not have access to EE’s 4G technology. It seems that at the moment, EE is content with keeping its 4G speeds to themselves.
The good news is that EE does plan to eventually offer 4G to LIFE Mobile and other MVNO partners, though their VP of Wholesale and M2M at EE isn’t too specific about when such services are coming, simply saying: “Our ambition is to provide 4G to key industry players by the end of 2013, and we feel this will open up a world of opportunities for both new and existing partners alike.”
So when is LIFE Mobile coming and what kinds of plans and services can we expect? We don’t have an exact date just yet, though Phones 4u is committing to the month of March for the launch.
No specific details on their plans either, though Phones 4u says they will offer a “wide range of great value tariffs and services that include data packages as standard, reflecting the changing nature of customer usage.” Hopefully that translates out to the offering of an unlimited data, talk and text plan alongside other options.
What do you think, are you interested in the idea of Phone 4u launching its own mobile service or not?