WARNING: Do not buy Airtel Unliminet Modem if you have already bought any of the weekly or monthly Airtel Unliminet packages. If you do, you will have thrown away Kshs 3,000.
Airtel Unliminet, you know it, right? Of course you do. It is actually the best product Airtel has ever come up with. It provides great voice, data and SMS services at amazing price points for daily, weekly and monthly plans. I have used the monthly Unliminet for several months and I have loved it, except for one thing, the available monthly data plans under both the Shs 1,000 and Shs 2,000 monthly Unliminet plans do not satisfy my data demands; and that’s why when Safaricom restructured its data offers by killing the useless night shift bundles, I rushed back to Safaricom only to discover that Safaricom Internet is the most useless network in my area of residence – but I have been persevering in Safaricom – waiting for something good to happen elsewhere – and it did happen on Airtel – or so I thought.
When my last month’s Unliminet data expired, I discovered a new entry under their *544# menu – The Airtel Unliminet Modem. Airtel Unliminet Modem is an offer where one can access 20 GB of data for only for Shs 3,000 (Shs 2,999 to be precise) and once that data is exhausted, the user is still allowed to access Internet but at a reduced speed of 256 Kpbs. Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp and Gmail, on the other hand, will still load at full 3G speeds even after data exhaustion. What a blessing! Compare that to Safaricom’s data for Shs 3,000 that gives you a meager 12 GB of which when exhausted, the Internet is cut off completely.
The 20 GB Airtel Unliminet modem is similar to Orange’s Unlimited Internet, only that Orange’s offer has its speed reduced to 56 Kpbs upon exhaustion of the 20 GB and it doesn’t come with full speed access of WhatsAp, Facebook, Twitter and Gmail. But the Airtel Unliminet Modem has one big problem, you can lose all your money on it.
So, how can you lose money on Airtel Unliminet Modem?
Assume your mobile usage is similar to mine where you hardly make calls but your data consumption is a hungry one. You then will agree with me that the monthly Kshs 1000 Airtel Unliminet is more than sufficient for your calling needs but is very inadequate on data. For example, I use between 350 and 400 minutes each month on calls, but when careful on data I consume slightly above 7.5 GB. If I use data without constrain, I would use twice as much data and that would be about 15 GB a month. For a person like me therefore, Kshs 1000 monthly Airtel Unliminet is conducive for voice calls and the newly launched Kshs 3000 Airtel Unliminet modem is more than good news for data. The question is, can you enjoy the two services simultaneously for a total of Kshs 4,000 a month?
I thought I could.
On 9th this month I bought the Shs 1,000 Airtel Unliminet that gave me 2 GB of data, data of which I exhausted within a few days then I went ahead and subscribed to the Airtel Unliminet Modem package for Kshs 2,999. That was on 17th this month. And that’s how I lost that money. Okay, I wasn’t wise. A day later, I bought something else – a booster pack of 1 GB for Kshs 199 that ought to have allowed me browse at top speed. That too, was lost. This is why.
You see, my Kshs 1000 monthly Unliminet will expire on November 9, 2015 and according to Airtel, I am not allowed to use the Airtel Uniminet modem before the 1000 monthly unliminet package expires. This then means that I will only be able to access the 20 GB data between the 10th and 17th November 2015. At an extravagant consumption rate of let’s say 500 MB per day (on average I consume 250 MB per day), I will be able to use 4 GB ONLY – out of the 21 GB that I bought both under the Airtel Unliminet Modem and the Kshs 199 booster pack. Meaning the rest of my 17 GB will be lost in thin air.
I have complained about this to Airtel a thousand times over and a thousand times over they have reminded me of their terms and conditions – terms and conditions that do not allow me to use the two Unliminet packages simultaneously. And if you asked me, I think those are stupid terms and conditions.
The Kshs 1000 Airtel Unliminet is a voice+data+text package whereas the Kshs 2,999 Airtel Unliminet Modem is a data package only – and so there is no reason, physical, practical or otherwise, that should prevent the two packages from running side by side. Right now, my Internet access on my Airtel line is at 256 Kpbs since I had exhausted the 2 GB. 256 Kpbs cannot allow me to easily access sites such as Kachwanya.com – that means I can’t blog using my Airtel line. I can’t surf properly yet I have some 21 GB of data lying idle in Airtel servers – data that I wanted to use for one month but Airtel wants me to use them for 8 days only.
The fact that Airtel Unliminet packages with voice+data+text packages cannot run side by side with the data only package means that if you buy both packages at the same day, then you shall have lost the money used to buy the Airtel Unliminet modem (Kshs 3,000) … and there is no refund, no recourse, no nothing.
I hope with this Airtel will be reasonable and allow for simultaneous access of the Airtel Unliminet Modem with the other Unliminet packages.