Uncompetitive--Virgin Media's new mobile broadband offering

Having just signed a six-year extension to its MVNO contract with T-Mobile, Virgin Media has taken the plunge into the burgeoning mobile broadband market with a deal that might appeal to its 4 million existing customers. However, its ambitions of recruiting new subscribers looks slim given how the deal is priced.

The company is offering an 18-month contract with a 3GB monthly bandwidth limit for only £15 per month, a price that also includes a free USB dongle. Virgin also talks of mobile broadband speeds of up to 3.6Mbps, considered by many to be an ambitious number.

By comparison, 3 UK is offering a 5GB monthly limit for £15--which can be obtained by existing subscribers for half price.

However, what might balance this out in the minds of consumers is the expectation that Virgin Media will shortly offer the first five-play package on the market combining TV, phone, fixed broadband, mobile broadband and handset.

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