Think twice before signing a new mobile phone contract

Mobile phone customers should think twice before signing up to a new mobile phone contract over the next two months. Many will be better off waiting until September.

PhoneChoice has found mobile service providers are offering very attractive deals at the moment but they require long-term commitments of up to 30 months, or two-and-a-half years – and there's a good reason.

New laws coming into effect on September 25 will force mobile providers to allow subscribers to take their number with them when changing carriers.

InfoChoice supports this great advance for consumers. It will allow shopping around for better deals without the inconvenience of having to give friends, family and business contacts a new number.

However, the forced change means telcos are trying harder than ever before to lock subscribers in for as long as possible in advance of the changes,” Ms Norman said. Heightened competition means good deals will still be around after September but existing subscribers will be able to have their cake and eat it – a better deal and the same number.

The scramble to pick up ex-One.Tel customers and the current regulatory action against some telcos by the ACCC underlines just how careful consumers should be when considering new mobile deals. InfoChoice's advice is as follows:

Wait until September:
if having to change your number would cause inconvenience
if wanting to upgrade your handset and you are not currently on a contract
if you want to have the freedom to choose from all the service providers in the market come September and keep your existing number

Commit now:
if you want to take advantage of a good deal from another service provider AND you don't mind changing your number
if you want to take advantage of a good deal from another service provider which uses the same carrier and they agree to let to take your number with you now

PhoneChoice offers consumers free independent comparisons of mobile handsets and plans on offer with interactive selectors to allow users to find the deal that suits them best from the vast range of offers on the market.