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Mobile SIM-only reviews

We know the mobile market very well here at Cable.co.uk. We get under the skin of every provider to bring you clear, concise information on SIM-only, pay monthly and pay-as-you-go mobile services in the UK.

We review all the factors important to you when choosing a new mobile phone deal, including network coverage and internet speed, call, text and data bundles, extra features and value for money. We are thorough and impartial, so you can trust our reviews to help you pick the right plan.

1
Three pay-as-you-go

4.6

Free

Three pay-as-you-go
2
Three SIM-only

4

£8

Three SIM-only
3
EE SIM-only

3.4

£9.99

EE SIM-only
4
O2 SIM-only

3.4

£8.50

O2 SIM-only
5
Vodafone SIM-only

3.4

£7.50

Vodafone SIM-only
6
Giffgaff SIM-only

3.2

£5

Giffgaff SIM-only
7
Vodafone pay-as-you-go

3.2

Free

Vodafone pay-as-you-go
8
Giffgaff pay-as-you-go

3

Free

Giffgaff pay-as-you-go
9
Lycamobile pay-as-you-go

2.8

Free

Lycamobile pay-as-you-go
10
Tesco Mobile pay-as-you-go

2.8

Free

Tesco Mobile pay-as-you-go
11
Mobile by Sainsbury’s SIM-only

2.6

£8

Mobile by Sainsbury’s SIM-only
12
Tesco Mobile SIM-only

2.6

£7.50

Tesco Mobile SIM-only
13
TalkTalk SIM-only

2.2

£3.75

TalkTalk SIM-only
14
Virgin Mobile pay-as-you-go

2.2

Free

Virgin Mobile pay-as-you-go
15
Virgin Mobile SIM-only

2.2

£2

Virgin Mobile SIM-only
16
Co-operative SIM-only

2

£12

Co-operative SIM-only

Or choose by provider

Who is Cable.co.uk?

Cable.co.uk is a team of consumer telecoms experts focused on helping our readers make the right choice. We cover mobile and home phone services, broadband and TV. Whether your decision is driven by the cheapest price, the greatest plan or the best customer service, our in-depth reviews will help you on your way.

Each mobile review represents our honest, informed opinion on whether the service is a good deal and worth your hard-earned money. We say it like it is and dig out the details the providers might not want you to know.

How we write reviews

We’re consumers as well as experts, so we know what’s important when looking for a good value mobile phone plan. We pride ourselves on investigating the small print and then presenting it in plain English so you know what you’re getting into when you sign up to a deal. We strive to be transparent because we hate jargon as much as you do.

Each category score is based on how well we feel it measures up to comparable services in the market, with a combination of these scores making up the overall rating. We are completely independent, so you can trust our judgement in revealing when a mobile plan is good, bad or average.

How we assess coverage

Strong network coverage is probably the most important factor when choosing a mobile phone provider because if the signal is bad in your area, you won’t be able to call, text or get online when you need to. You can check coverage in your location using checker tools on your chosen provider’s website, which we link to in each review.

Mobile phone coverage is growing all the time as providers work to expand their networks and bring faster connections. We keep track using data from industry regulator Ofcom, which reports the latest 3G and 4G coverage levels from the four UK networks – EE, O2, Three and Vodafone.

What our SIM graphic means

3G coverage

The percentage of the UK population with 3G coverage from each provider. It allows you to access the internet from your phone, as well as make calls and send text messages.

3G coverage

The percentage of the UK population with 3G coverage from each provider. It allows you to access the internet from your phone, as well as make calls and send text messages.

4G coverage

The percentage of the UK population with 4G coverage from each provider. It is the faster, more advanced version of 3G, with the same function but quicker internet access.

Average 3G speed

The provider’s average 3G download speed, according to Ofcom. The industry average is currently 6.1Mbps.

Average 4G speed

The provider’s average 4G download speed, according to Ofcom. The industry average is currently 15.1Mbps.

4G coverage

The percentage of the UK with 4G coverage from each provider. It is the faster, more advanced version of 3G, with the same function but quicker internet access.

Average 3G speed

The provider’s average 3G download speed, according to Ofcom. The industry average is currently 6.1Mbps.

Average 4G speed

The provider’s average 4G download speed, according to Ofcom. The industry average is currently 15.1Mbps.

Call allowance

The number of inclusive minutes you can choose to buy each month. It normally includes calls to standard UK landlines and UK mobiles only.

Text allowance

The number of inclusive text messages you can choose to buy each month. Multimedia messages (MMS) such as pictures and videos usually incur an extra cost.

Data allowance

The amount of data you can buy to use the internet each month. If you hit the limit, access may be stopped or continue at extra cost.

Minimum contract

The shortest time you have to commit to the provider, depending on your choice of call plan.

Why do we need your postcode?

Once you enter your postcode, Cable.co.uk will perform a live lookup and check all the available providers in your area.

This ensures you receive accurate information on the availability of providers and packages in your area.

Your information is safe with us. We won't share your postcode with anyone. Guaranteed.

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