By Dan Howdle | Wednesday, February 12th 2020
VOXI was launched by Vodafone in August 2017, positioned as a separate network exclusively for the younger generation. But it has since dropped the upper age limit on its packages, making them available to whoever wants them. Here we are now in 2020, so how does it fare compared to the competition?
VOXI is Vodafone’s attempt at being cool. Its plans offer endless social media at the lower end, with use of most popular social media platforms (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and more) not adding to your total monthly data usage. At the top end, there's a plan with unlimited data, making 'endless social media' somewhat redundant. VOXI also offers a small range of popular handset contracts too.
VOXI offers four SIM plans, all on 30-day flexible rolling contracts. This means you can chop and change your tariff at the end of each month and there are no long-term contracts tying you down. You can cancel any time.
All tariffs come with free calls and texts as well as endless data for selected social and chat apps. You can use Snapchat, Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Viber and Facebook Messenger as much as you want, without eating into your 30-day data allowance. At the very top end, there is the aforementioned unlimited data SIM.
If your main data usage focuses on social media, VOXI’s 8GB deal should suit you. Those with bigger browsing needs can get 20GB or 45GB data deals. And of course if you simply use crazy data each month, you can opt for the unlimited SIM. You can also purchase an extra 1GB of data each month, as well as video and streaming passes so you can watch the likes of Netflix, YouTube and Prime Video or listen to Spotify or Apple Music without eating into your main data allowance.
If you're already a Vodafone customer, you can join VOXI immediately online. Otherwise you will be have to apply and will be sent a free SIM in the post. Customers not currently on Vodafone will need to get a PAC code to transfer their number. The network says this should only take two days but you may also need to get your phone unlocked by your current provider to use the new SIM, which could take longer.
VOXI has a decent range of Apple, Samsung, Huawei, Sony and Google phones – and you can choose whether to pay the full amount outright or to break it down into 30 monthly payments. There's 0% interest on the monthly payments option, so you won't be paying any more in total for the handset, and as VOXI uses PayPal Credit, you can you make additional payments if you so wish, reducing the length of your term.
Unlike every other mobile phone provider (with the exception of giffgaff), getting a pay monthly phone from VOXI doesn't tie you into that network. You'll need to choose a 30-day plan alongside your handset, but once 30 days is up you're free to request a Number Unlock Code (NUC) from VOXI and then switch to another provider if you so wish. We're not sure why anyone would do this as VOXI's rates are very, very good, especially since you can cancel anytime.
As for VOXI's handset range itself, there's the flagship iPhones, Samsung Galaxy and Google Pixel phones that you'd expect to see, plus a smattering of mid-range Huawei and Sony phones for those on a tighter budget, as well as a couple of older iPhones.
When it comes to customer service, VOXI again tries to appeal to the youth by ditching the contact centre and offering social media as its main form of communication. Users can reach VOXI on webchat, Facebook Messenger or Twitter from 7am to midnight every day. It may be frustrating for some users to not be able to call up and speak to someone, but as there is no formal complaints data available for VOXI as yet, it is hard to judge its success.
By way of comparison, the latest Ofcom industry data from 2018 (Ofcom reports are generally a year or two behind) showed 93% of customers were satisfied with Vodafone’s mobile service, in line with the overall average. The report shows that 4% of Vodafone customers had reason to complain and that 54% were satisfied with the way the company's complaints handling - two figures roughly in line with the industry averages.
VOXI is a different offering though, with totally different deals and style of service. It doesn't have enough customers to appear in Ofcom's report, and while there is some VOXI feedback onreviews websites such as Trustpilot, take these with a pinch of salt. Mobile networks and broadband providers tend to review badly, as people generally only head to these types of sites when they have a complaint.
Social media has the ability to make a fair old dent in your data. If you are a regular tweeter or have several WhatsApp groups on the go, getting all this thrown in is good value. VOXI also offers extras such as free phone cases and a 'friends with benefits' scheme: if you invite a friend to join VOXI and they do, you’ll both get a £10 Amazon.co.uk gift card as long as you have both paid your first two bills.
The network will also let you tether another mobile device or tablet to your phone, tablet or MiFi device, and enjoy the endless data from the apps included in your passes. However, tethering to other devices such as your games console, TV, or through a smart device such as Chromecast, Roku, or Fire TV Stick, is not included.
The deals themselves are up there with the best prices on the market and offer the flexibility of 30-day contracts. There may not be unlimited data overall, but it would take a while to use up the mid and top-range data deals, especially as your social media is already covered.
You get the same coverage on VOXI as you do on the whole Vodafone 4G/5G network. Vodafone’s mobile coverage has won industry awards in the UK and it also extends to 120 destinations abroad. There is a coverage checker on the VOXI website that will tell you how good your coverage will be both indoors and outdoors based on where you live. You can also check coverage in European destinations.
Customers can only have one VOXI account and one active VOXI SIM card, but can have other Vodafone products.
VOXI aims to do things differently, with a focus on social media in its plans and online-only customer service. The 30-day deals are well priced and flexible, and there is the option to get a pay monthly handset without being tied to the network.
Separating social media from data usage is interesting but not unique; Virgin Media lets users go on Facebook Messenger, Twitter and WhatsApp as part of their plans without eating into their allowance. And you could argue that Three's Go Binge feature, which gives you unlimited streaming data for apps like Netflix and Apple Music, would save you far more data.
Being part of Vodafone gives users a guarantee of decent signal, but VOXI's novel social-based customer service system is yet to be proven. It’s still early days, but VOXI is worth looking at.