How much will it cost you? How fast is it? Where can you it? And how does Vodafone 5G compare with Three and EE? Broadband Choices weighs it all up.
Available from 10th July, Vodafone’s service distinguishes itself from its rivals by offering unlimited usage and 5G when you’re abroad as well as at home. And with prices starting at £23 per month, it’s well worth a look.
Here’s everything you need to know.
How much is Vodafone 5G?
From 10th July Vodafone is offering three Unlimited 5G SIM only plans, which start from a shade over £20 per month and all include an unlimited data allowance.
So you won’t have to worry about curbing your usage and can make the most of your speedy 5G service.
Vodafone’s 5G Unlimited SIM only plans break down like this:
- Unlimited Lite (£23 per month). Vodafone is pitching this plan at light users, whose usage mostly consists of chatting on social apps, browsing the internet and streaming music. Maximum download speed of 2Mbps.
- Vodafone Unlimited Lite (£26 per month). Aimed at customers who want to stream video without worrying about their data usage. Maximum download speed of 10Mbps.
- Vodafone Unlimited Max (£30 per month). ‘As fast as [your] device and network will allow’. This plan is for anyone who wants to try the latest technology, such as virtual reality, live TV and sport in 4K and real-time multi-player gaming while they’re on the go.
From summer 2019, all Unlimited plans will include 5G roaming in Spain, Germany and Italy, as part of Vodafone’s roaming scheme that lets you use your UK allowances overseas for no extra charge.
Heading overseas soon? Here's everything you need to know about roaming.
However, if you’re roaming outside those three countries with 5G you’ll be connected to 4G. Until such time as 5G connectivity is extended to other destinations.
All three Unlimited plans include the option to add a streaming service for £6 per month. Options are Spotify, Amazon Prime Video, Sky Sports Mobile or Now TV.
If you don’t need unlimited data, Vodafone is also offering three Red Extra plans that offer 5G for the same price as 4G. These are:
- Red 1. Gets you 1GB per month for £11 p/m.
- Red 2. Includes 5GB per month for £15 p/m.
- Red 3. Bags you 20GB per month for £20 p/m.
But be aware: to use a 5G SIM, you’ll need a 5G phone.
You won’t be able to use a 5G SIM and get superfast speeds with current-generation phones, such as the iPhone XS and XS Max, iPhone XR, Huawei P30 and the standard 4G models of the Samsung Galaxy S10.
What is 5G? Get up to speed with our one-stop guide.
What about Vodafone 5G phone and SIM plans?
Vodafone is currently offering two smartphones on monthly contracts. These are the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G edition and the Xiaomi Mi Mix 5G.
Prices for the S10 5G start at £70 per month on Vodafone’s Red Extra plan, with £49 to pay upfront. That buys you 60GB of data per month and unlimited calls and texts.
Prefer the Xiaomi Mi Mix 5G? That’s available from £54 per month, with an upfront charge.
Once again this is on the Red Extra plan and includes 60GB of data per month and unlimited calls and texts.
Where is Vodafone 5G available?
Currently Vodafone customers will be able to access its 5G service in Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Liverpool, London and Manchester.
Before the end of the year, Vodafone will extend its 5G network to Birkenhead, Blackpool, Bournemouth, Guildford, Newbury, Portsmouth, Plymouth, Reading, Southampton, Stoke-on-Trent, Warrington and Wolverhampton.
By way of comparison, EE’s service is available now (8th July) in Belfast, Birmingham, Cardiff, Edinburgh, London and Manchester.
However, it’s scheduled to expand rapidly. EE is aiming to extend coverage to ten more sites before the end of 2019, including Bristol, Coventry, Glasgow, Hull, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield.
Finally, you won’t be able to get 5G from Three until August. And initially it won’t be for mobile pone customers. Instead it’ll be restricted to Three’s 5G Home Broadband, which is intended as a viable replacement to fixed-line broadband for households.
From launch, Three’s 5G network will take in: Birmingham, Bolton, Bradford, Brighton, Bristol, Cardiff, Coventry, Derby, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Hull, Leeds, Leicester, London, Liverpool, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Milton Keynes, Nottingham, Reading, Rotherham, Sheffield, Slough, Sunderland and Wolverhampton.
Vodafone 5G home broadband
Vodafone is also offering a wireless 5G router, dubbed GigaCube, that will provide a speedy connection as a substitute for a fixed-line home broadband service.
This will be available on an 18-month contract, or a 30-day rolling contract, and will include unlimited data inside and outside your home.
You’ll also be able to sign up for a combined GigaCube and phone/SIM-only plan from Vodafone.