Updated : July 2016
The state of telephony and Mobile Postpaid plan in Malaysia has been evolving. After all, it is only in the recent years that we are presented with smart mobile devices, and then tablets which could surf the net well, while not breaking the various sites we visit.
Also, with the advent of 3G technology in Malaysia and the emergence of DiGi and followed by U Mobile, which rocked the telecommunications industry with their competitive pricing and catchy ads, have made it so much easier to being online and browse the internet via your phone.
The problem now that if you are have a smart phone, you would have noticed that it is indeed not wise to go without a data plan. It would only mean scurrying around for WiFi signals at public places when you are out, while missing out on important messages and emails, or having to resort the costly sms service here in Malaysia. In comparison, having a data plan enables friends, family and acquaintances to send things like voice messages, maps, directions and even bank details on the go, making you mobile and efficient.
The Confusing State of Mobile Postpaid Plans in Malaysia
However, Mobile Postpaid Plans in Malaysia are a mixed bag, with various providers turning out a spectrum of packages, that at times can be confusing to the end-user. In addition to new plans being churned out a different times by the operators, the postpaid plans in Malaysia can be quite costly, depending on your take home pay. In comparison, postpaid plans in places like UK and US are more affordable, if we calculate them on the percentage of the take home income basis.
Here is where we as DigitalDestinyÂ would like to help you. In order to gain the most out of your Mobile Postpaid plan here in Malaysia, we will present you a breakdown of the various postpaid plans in Malaysia and the best value for money depending on your needs.
For starters, we won’t be reviewing iPhone postpaid plans, which comes with the iPhone when you purchase those on contract with the various operators.Â That comes in our regularly updated post on postpaid iPhone plans.
We have also decided not to include sms plans into the comparison, as sms, together with mms, are becoming more irrelevant as we speak, as smart phone sales continue to rise and gain majority marketshare worldwide. 1 However, sms might be here to stay for the next few years, as the senior citizens in Malaysia slowly switch over their feature phones to smart phones.
Before we continue, please find the comparison table between the various telco operators in Malaysia. We have included the big three players (Celcom, DiGi & Maxis), and the upstart, U Mobile. In creating this comparison table, we are surprised ourselves with how much the landscape of Mobile Postpaid Plans in Malaysia has changed.
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We have separated the top-up rates for data in this update. This will make it easier for you to browse the strengths and weaknesses of each postpaid plan.
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Best Mobile Postpaid plan in Malaysia for Voice
In this issue of best postpaid plan for voice, we have allÂ of our four operators offering unlimited talk time, compared to two previously. U Mobile graciously jumped into the fray with their U Mobile Hero P70 plan, which gives the most amount of data as well.
This makes it really interesting as U Mobile isnâ€™t known for their wide coverage. But U Mobile excels in major towns and does the job well if you do not need to travel often.
DiGi changed their SmartPlan 65 and 75 to the Postpaid 68 and 78, while offering the same package as before. They however, added at Postpaid 80 voice plan, which gives you an amazing 10GB of data and unlimited talk time.
Let us look at the entry point for each of our competitor below and assess their strengths and weaknesses.
- U Mobile Hero P70 â€“ Unlimited talk time, 7GB data â€“ RM 70
- U Mobile Hero P98 – Unlimited talk time, 7GB data – RM 98
- Celcom First Gold â€“ Unlimited talk time, 5GB data â€“ RM 80
- DiGi Postpaid 68Â â€“ Unlimited talk time, 3GB data â€“ RM 68
- DiGi Postpaid 78Â â€“ Unlimited talk time, 7GB data â€“ RM 78
- DiGi PostpaidÂ 80 â€“ Unlimited talk time, 10GB data â€“ RM 80
- MaxisOne Plan 98 â€“ Unlimited talk time, 5GB data â€“ RM 98
While its competitors had unlimited talk time for awhile, Celcom chose to wait. However, they are now in the game with the Celcom First Gold. While it was clear that MaxisOne Plan 98 was the best in June 2015, it is no longer the case anymore. With Maxis rapidly losing customers, they adjusted the amount of data offered, but only changed it from 1GB to 4GB.
- U Mobile â€“ A
- DiGi â€“ A
- Celcom Â â€“ B
- Maxis â€“ D
a)Â Best for the person in town who rarely travels outstation.
While U Mobile is working hard on their offerings, the U Mobile Hero P70 is a killer offering, valid until U Mobile decides to discontinue it in the future. With the Hero P70, U Mobile jumps right in the middle of the DiGi and Maxis feud and beats both of them in terms of value.
7GB of data is a good amount. And if you stay in major towns like Georgetown, Ipoh, Kota Bahru, Johor Bahru and the likes, U Mobile is the best for you. And you could always purchase a prepaid if you travel outstation.
b) Best for the outstation person or the salesman who needs to visit outstation customers regularly
If you live on the outskirts of town, or out of U Mobileâ€™s coverage, Celcom is now the plan to go with. With the Celcom First Gold, you get unlimited talk time, easy top ups and best coverage. Maxis, which held the title, sadly lost it as they kept up their expensive prices andÂ stillÂ measly bandwidth allocation.
c) Where does DiGi stand?
DiGi has significantly improved over the last few months. So much that I cancelled my DiGi iPhone contract in order to subscribe to the SmartPlan 65 and then 75. However, automatically switching my from the SmartPlan 75 to the DiGi Postpaid 78, wasn’t very nice of DiGi.
DiGi comes with better coverage than U Mobile for just a fraction of the price. However, if youâ€™re going to East Malaysia, DiGiâ€™s lack of 3G/4G coverage is still frustrating.
Best Mobile Postpaid plan in Malaysia for Coverage
If you happen to travel out of Klang Valley on a regular basis, you might prefer Celcom, who still has the best 3G coverage in Malaysia. In comparison, while U Mobile has expanded their coverage range, it is still lagging behind the three other players. However, having taken a look at U Mobile’sÂ coverage map, we are impressed with the 3G coverage for smaller towns like Taiping, Tanah Rata and even Tuaran in Sabah.
We have noticed that DiGi has made the effort to improve their 3G/4G LTE coverage areas by quite a fair bit. In the latest DiGi coverage map, DiGi now has better 3G coverage of East Malaysia, though Celcom still leads it by a fair bit.
- Celcom â€“ A
- Maxis â€“ A-
- DiGi â€“ B+
- U Mobile â€“ C-
Best Mobile Postpaid plan in Malaysia for heavy surfers
Since our last update, there has been a lot of changes. For data itself, U Mobile wins with Hero P70 with 7GB at RM 70 per month and unlimited talk time plan. However, U Mobileâ€™s top up plans are atrocious and can cost you more than you bargain, especially if you hit 7GB easily.
U Mobile also wins if you are a heavy surfer and would like a lot of data. They now offer 30GB of data for their U Mobile Hero P98 plan. In comparison, Maxis only offers 20GB of data at their MaxisOne Plan 188.
DiGiâ€™s time limited PostpaidÂ 78 gives us 7GB of data as well, but with slightly better top up options. The best would still be Celcom First Gold with their 5GB plan and 5GB free on weekends. While they start off with less data, Celcom allows you to easily top up your data if you run out.
While Maxis has shown improvements over their current postpaid plans, offering 4GB more for their cheapest plan (MaxisOne Plan 98), isn’t that fantastic compared to their rivals. Unless Maxis improves, subscribers who do their research, might just switch over to others.
- Celcom â€“ A-
- DiGi â€“ B+
- U Mobile â€“ A
- Maxis â€“ C-
Best Mobile Postpaid plan in Malaysia below RM 100
We have much better choices nowadays. For below RM 100, we would personally go with either DiGi Postpaid 68 and unlimited talk time for their slightly better top up plans, or Celcomâ€™s First Gold for their unlimited talk time with better top ups. If youâ€™re a heavy user, you should go with Celcom though.
Best Mobile Postpaid plan in Malaysia on a budget
If you a student or have a budget constraint, you might want to consider U Mobileâ€™s Hero Postpaid U28 plan, which gives you 3GB of data and a slightly pricier charge of 20 sen/min for off network calls (meaning U Mobile to other operators). This would enable you to save on sending out smses and get unto the data plan bandwagon.
With a compelling Hero P70 plan, U Mobile ensures that you donâ€™t have to switch out of U Mobile but keep staying on with the best provider for budget users within major towns. If you donâ€™t need the extra data, DiGiâ€™s Postpaid 68 might be an even better deal. Otherwise, add RM 10 and you can consider both the U Mobile Hero P70 plan or the DiGi Postpaid 78.
- U Mobile â€“ A
- DiGi â€“ A
- Celcom â€“ B+
- Maxis â€“ D
Biggest Mobile Postpaid Plan Improvement
Since our last update in February 2016, we have seen Maxis improving the data allocation for their postpaid plans. However, they are still too expensive when compared to their rivals.
DiGi reduced the prices for their voice-focused postpaid plans, while offering a whopping 25GB for their top-tiered DiGi Postpaid 218. U Mobile however continues to astound us with their bold plans. They recently launched a crazy deal called the U Mobile Hero Postpaid 98, which bundles 30GB data with unlimited talk time.
BiggestÂ Downgrading Of Plans
We do not have issues with plans being downgraded this time around. Rather, we are excited that Malaysians will have affordable plans to decide upon
Weâ€™re disappointed by Maxisâ€™ lack of initiative. While the rest of the telcos are offering better plans at lower price and higher bandwidth, Maxis continues to keep their prices up. As telecommunications improve, it becomes cheaper to send more data over a similar bandwidth. This is due to better compression algorithms and better processors. As such, we do hope Maxis wakes up from their slumber.
Which Mobile Postpaid plan in Malaysia should I consider?
It seems that Malaysian Telco Operators have differentiated their offerings, with each focusing on a different niche, to gain the most out of their respective segments.
Final Rating for Celcom
If youâ€™re looking for something you can rely on and not get frustrated with, we believe Celcom has hit the right spots. While they still offer less bandwidth at more expensive prices than their competitors, the easy top up options and an entry level Celcom First Blue, makes us give them a great rating of A
Overall Rating : A
Final Rating for DiGi
DiGi responded to U Mobile and consumers by coming out with the PostpaidÂ 68 and 78, the cheapest unlimited talk time plan in Malaysia. Â While we love DiGi, their lack of 3G/4G coverage for East Malaysia and troublesome top up options gives them only a B+
Overall Rating : B+
Final Rating for Maxis
Maxisâ€™ latest plans are good for those who travel outstation and need to call often. But at RM 98, we urge Maxis to offer more data to their customers, as U Mobile offers 30GB of data and unlimited talktime at the same price.
Perhaps a 10GB would be better than a gimmicky RM 48 for extra lines and additional 5GB of data to the data pool. Though Maxis improved their Spotify quota to 15GB, the question is, how many people actually use that much of Spotify? [^3]
Rather DiGi’s offer of unlimited WhatsApp and WeChat would be more practical. Perhaps Maxis could do unlimited Facebook Chat, Facebook and SnapChat?
Overall Rating : D
Final Rating for U Mobile
While great for people on a budget, and having the best download speed among all telco operatorsÂ 4, U Mobileâ€™s tough position of starting later in the industry weighs heavily on its coverage and the price of its voice plans/min. However, with the frustrating limited additional internet at RM 10 for 1.5GB for only 3 days and the limited coverage, U Mobile needs to tweak their packages to be the best postpaid plan in Malaysia that we could so readily encourage others to purchase.
Currently though, we would recommend people to start their Mobile Postpaid plans with U Mobile. And with the generous U Mobile Hero P70 and P98 plan running, switch over as soon as possible.
Overall Rating : A
Conclusion of the Best Mobile Postpaid Plan in Malaysia
We call it a tie between Celcom and U Mobile. While U Mobile is cheaper, Celcom has better coverage and better top up options. But both are very viable options.
- Â http://techcrunch.com/2014/02/13/smartphones-outsell-dumb-phones-globally/
- Â http://www.themalaymailonline.com/tech-gadgets/article/malaysias-mobile-space-no-1-position-up-for-grabs
- Â http://opensignal.com/networks/malaysia/u-mobile-coverage