Smarty Unlimited Data Review: Limitless Data for Just £20 Per Month

by Brandon Ackroyd - , Last Updated on January 7, 2020, Buying Guides

Mobile data is getting cheaper by the month, and that means that most operators these days are rolling out unlimited data plans. If you’re a big data user, then you might be wondering which of these unlimited plans is best for you.

That’s why we’re taking a look at the Smarty unlimited data plan so that you can get the low down on the good and the bad and decide whether this is the plan you’ve been looking for.

Is an Unlimited Plan for Me?

Choosing

Before we get into specifics, it’s worth considering whether an unlimited data plan is really going to be the best option for you. So what are the pros and cons here?

On the good side you’re (obviously) going to get lots of data. That means you (theoretically) don’t need to worry about expensive additional charges on top of your regular phone payment. You should be more or less free to go online whenever and wherever you feel like it.

On the downside, there’s price. Unlimited plans are getting cheaper, but there are still limited data plans that are going to be more efficient. That means that if you’re not truly a big data user and you can deal with having a limited amount of data then you’re probably going to save some cash.

The choice is really yours. It’s a good idea to check your usage history, which you can do by looking at old bills online or by checking the data measuring tool in your phone’s settings menu, to see what your real data usage stats look like and then going from there.

Who Are Smarty?

smarty unlimited

Smarty is a no-frills network owned and operated by Three. This has good and bad points. On the good side, you can expect great reception and service, just as you would with Three, and lower prices than with big-name operators. On the bad side, no-frills means exactly that, you won’t be finding much in the way of extras with Smarty, nor can you get a handset with your phone plan.

What Kind of Unlimited Data Deal Do Smarty Offer?

smarty sim

Smarty offers one simple deal: unlimited calling, texting and data for £20 a month. But there’s something a little special about this deal. This is a one-month rolling contract, which means that basically you’ll get the best of both worlds. You’ll pay your £20 in advance (so no phone bills, no added extra charges later) and at the end of the month, your contract will automatically renew unless you cancel it.

A one-month rolling contract is great for a number of reasons. You’re in control here, and you can’t overspend. You can cancel that contract at the end of any month, so there’s no real commitment. And finally, there’s no credit check. If you’ve got bad credit or no credit at all, then that’s not going to be a problem here!

What Else Do I Need to Know?

need to know

Smarty really do keep things simple, just as they promise. But there are a few things that you should know about before signing up for this deal.

Out of Bundle Charges

You get unlimited calling, texting and data, so there shouldn’t be much use for out of bundle charges. However, if you want to call abroad or need to call premium-rate numbers you will need to put credit into your account. Fortunately, Smarty’s unlimited SIM acts as a PAYG SIM as well, so you’ll simply need to add credit to your account just as you would do with a regular PAYG SIM in order to make those calls.

Speed Limitations

Some operators put speed restrictions on their unlimited data plans, slowing down your speeds after a certain amount of data has been used. Smarty do NOT do this, so you should get access to full 4G speeds all the time. Do note though that despite being owned by Three (one of the pioneers of 5G data speeds), contracts with Smarty do NOT currently offer fast 5G data.

Fair Usage Policy

As with most operators, Smarty does have a fair usage policy. This is designed to ensure that people are using their personal phone plans for themselves, and not as part of a business operation. Smarty’s fair usage policy is the same as with most other operators, and you get a generous limit. You’ll be able to use up to 1000 GB of data a month. Use more than that and you might find that your contract gets cancelled (though you’ll probably find it difficult to use that much data!).

Finally, if you’re travelling in the EU, you will be subject to our fair use limit of 20GB each month. You can find out more about terms and conditions for Smarty’s unlimited plan here.

Additional Benefits

As we mentioned above, Smarty is a no-frills network, so you won’t get many extra benefits, but there are a couple of things you should know about.

Smarty does offer a refer-a-friend service. If you recommend the network to a friend who signs up for service you’ll both get a free month of service from Smarty.

Secondly, Smarty has a group plan programme as well. You can add up to 8 SIM cards to one account, with a 10% discount on each additional SIM after the primary one. Each SIM can have its own plan (i.e. Not all of them have to have the same unlimited data plan). This is handy for families or even just groups of friends since everyone benefits from that discount.

How Does Smarty Compare?

compare-three

How Smarty’s unlimited plan compares to other operators really depends on what you’re comparing the plan too. There are cheaper unlimited data plans available. However, when it comes to one-month rolling contracts, Smarty is probably going to be your best bet.

One Month Contract Comparison

There are a few operators that offer you unlimited calling, texting, and data on a one-month rolling contract. Remember that Smarty’s plan costs £20 a month. The other options are:

  • GiffGaff at £25 a month
  • iD Mobile, also at £25 a month
  • Voxi at £30 a month

Obviously, compared to those, Smarty gets you the best bang for your buck, and that £5 a month saving really does add up…

Longer Contract Comparison

However, if you’re willing to commit to a longer contract, then you could save yourself even more money since Smarty’s £20 offer isn’t the cheapest around. Here are your longer contract unlimited data offer prices from other operators:

  • Three offers unlimited calling, texting, and data on a 12-month contract for £18 a month
  • Vodafone offers unlimited calling, texting, and data on a 12-month contract for £22 a month
  • Virgin Mobile offers unlimited calling, texting, and data on a 12-month contract for £32 a month
  • O2 offers unlimited calling, texting, and data on an 18-month contract for £33 a month
  • EE offers unlimited calling, texting, and data on a 12-month contract for £34 a month

Don’t forget that with these other deals that you do need to make a 12-month commitment since breaking your contract will involve paying some hefty fees.

Also, keep in mind that you may save even further with other operators with special offers, contract renewing deals (if you’re already a customer of another operator), or by bundling services (getting more than one service from the same operator, family plans, cable TV and home internet as well as mobile services, for example).

Coverage with Smarty

coverage

Coverage with Smarty is exactly the same as coverage with their parent network Three, which means very good indeed. Three currently gets 99.8% population coverage in the UK for 3G and 98.3% coverage with 4G.

Do note that Three does NOT get 2G coverage, though as long as you have a smartphone this shouldn’t be an issue. And once again, Smarty does NOT allow you to use Three’s 5G data network for faster mobile data.

Having said all that, it’s never a bad idea to check coverage in your local area just in case you’re in a black spot. You can easily do that by using Smarty’s website, or by accessing OFCOM’s official UK coverage checker.

Roaming and Tethering

UK Tethering

If you’re travelling inside the EU than roaming isn’t too much of a problem. You can use your unlimited calls and texts just as you would at home, and you can use up to 19 GB of your mobile data each month. Travelling outside of the EU is trickier with Smarty. You won’t be able to use your unlimited minutes, texts, or data. You’ll need to top up your SIM with a cash balance and then pay roaming charges. You can find out more about Smarty’s exact roaming charges here.

If you want to tether or use your mobile data to get another device online, you are absolutely free to do so, since Smarty places no restrictions on this. You can either use your phone as a personal hotspot (using mobile data to broadcast a WiFi signal allowing other devices to get online) or even slide your Smarty SIM directly into a tablet or other device.

Smarty’s Unlimited Data Plan: The Bottom Line

If you’re looking for an unlimited data plan that doesn’t require a long-time commitment or a credit check, then you really can’t do better than Smarty. Smarty offers the cheapest one-month rolling contract with unlimited data. Plus, you won’t face any speed restrictions or unreasonable limitations on your usage.

However, you will save money if you can commit to a longer contract with another operator, with Three offering prices a full £5 a month cheaper than Smarty for those willing to sign a 12-month contract. For those of us on a budget though, and unwilling or unable to sign a contract, Smarty is a fantastic option for unlimited mobile data.

Smarty Unlimited Data Deal

£20 per month

Smarty Unlimited Data Deal

Smarty’s unlimited data plan is just a 1-month plan that you can cancel anytime

  • Unlimited 4G & 3G data
  • No contract, no credit check, no exit fees
  • No speed restrictions

Price: £20/month

Get Smarty SIM