Vodafone has revealed details of a 4G trade-in scheme to allow customers to swap their 3G contracts for 4G when the super-fast network launches next year.
Customers who have been with the Vodafone for at least three months will be able to switch to a 4G plan by paying 30 per cent of their remaining contract. The sole drawback is that only owners of select handsets that already have 4G capabilities, or will get 4G versions in the near future, such as the iPhone 5, the Samsung Galaxy S3 and the Galaxy Note 2, will be eligible.
Voda’s 4G promise will be valid until December 31st, 2013. However, to be eligible, your handset must have been bought between September 12th 2012 for the iPhone 5 or 26th October 2012 for the Galaxy S3 and March 31st 2012.
Still, it’s great news for users who aren’t sure whether to wait for 4G to land on Vodafone before picking up one of these handsets, and it could potentially prevent a mass exodus of customers to EE, the UK’s first ever 4G network which launched yesterday.
Although Vodafone is keeping mum about how much more punters can expect to pay for 4G, the network is likely to price its tariffs broadly in line with EE's, which start from £36 a month for 500MB of monthly data allowance.
Rival carrier Three is also expected to launch its 4G network sometime next year, having bought part of EE’s 1800MHz spectrum.
Vodafone and O2, meanwhile, have to wait for OfCom’s auction of the 800MHz and 2.6GHz frequencies before they make their move. This is expected to happen in early 2013.