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Published: 26/10/2020

How the pandemic is changing communications

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A study by Ofcom shows that, before the Covid-19 pandemic, many people were moving
away from more established forms of communication – particularly landline calls and SMS
text messages – and adopting newer methods.

In the 12 months to February 2020, substantially more online adults were sending daily text
messages using a variety of online messaging platforms (52%), such as WhatsApp and
Facebook Messenger, than using SMS (41%) or email (26%). Daily use of online voice calls
(31%) was only slightly lower than mobile calls (38%).

The pandemic appears to have accelerated the adoption of online services to keep in touch
with friends and family. More than seven in 10 online adults in the UK are now making video
calls at least weekly, up from 35% pre-lockdown. This trend is particularly noticeable among
older internet users; the proportion of online adults aged 65+ who make a least one
video-call each week increased from 22% in February 2020 to 61% by May 2020.

The proportion of UK adults who used established online services to make video calls at
least weekly during lockdown – with WhatsApp reaching 49% in May (up from 20% in
February); Facebook Messenger 41% (from 18%); and FaceTime 30% (from 13%).).

Mobile phone online services are in demand more than ever before with mobile phone
user look for flexibility and value-based mobile phone tariffs, can a pre-pay phone SIM
card tariffs be the solution?

There’s no getting away from the fact that coronavirus has drastically changed the way we
live and work over the last few months. We spend more time outdoors and yet, we’ve spent
more time at home than ever before.

COVID 19 has also had a huge impact on how we shop and what we choose to purchase.
As lockdown eases and the economic impact of the pandemic begins to unfold, more and
more people are looking for ways to make their money stretch further due to redundancy.
One way of saving money is to switch your mobile phone SIM card to a pay-as-you-go tariff.

Over a quarter of all UK mobile phone users are on a pay-as-you-go tariff. Mobile networks
allow consumers to purchase added value Data, Voice and Text bundles that are rapidly
aligning the cost of using a pay-as-you-go tariff to a contract phone user tariff.

Many people have long-term mobile phone contracts. However, this method of mobile phone
ownership could decrease as it comes with disadvantages such as:

● Those with a poor credit rating can’t get a contract deal

● Some consumers can’t commit to paying a fixed monthly fee

● Not everyone benefits from the high volume of free minutes and/or texts

● The contract can’t be cancelled if the customer can no longer afford it

In times of financial uncertainty, having a long-term phone contract might not suit as many
people as it did before. However, PAYG mobile phone ownership could be a more
manageable solution.

The advantages of PAYG are:

● There’s no monthly fee to pay

● There is no way to spend more than you intended when using prepaid credit

● The customer is in control of how much they spend and how often they top-up

● There is no credit check required

People can top-up their phones at all Payzone stores and over the last few months, we have
seen an X% increase in this type of transaction. We spoke to [insert name] at [name of shop]
and asked him why he thought PAYG top-ups were on the rise.
QUOTE

“We are partnered with the biggest mobile phone providers in the UK. Our suppliers include
EE, O2, 3, Vodafone, Lycamobile, GiffGaff and Lebara and more and customers can top-up
as well as purchase SIM cards and International Calling Cards at their local Payzone store.”
Commented Martin Rouse, Retail Director at Payzone Bill Payments. “The ability to top-up
mobile phones is a valuable service that retailers can offer to their customers and will
continue to be popular in the future.”

Do you want to know more about the different types of bill payment services you can offer to
your customers? Call us today on 0800 0566 015 or fill out the form below.

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