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Vodafone Tops 876,000 UK Broadband Customers as Mobile Shrinks

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2021 (8:56 am) - Score 6,576
Vodafone UK broadband and mobile

UK ISP and mobile giant Vodafone have today published their latest results to the end of 2020 (financial Q3 FY21), which saw their fixed broadband base grow to 876,000 customers (up by +38k in the quarter vs +45K in Q2 FY21), while their mobile base slowed its decline to total 17,337,000 (down by -43k vs -200k in Q2 FY21).

Generally, the last quarter has been fairly eventful. The period saw Vodafone set a new target to reduce their total global carbon emissions to ‘net zero’ by 2040 (here), unveil a hefty price hike (here), extend free 4G data SIMs to 350,000 school children (here) and make some key changes to their Pay As You Go 1 tariff (here). Furthermore, they added SMS support to WiFi calling (here) and signed a deal to help share 222 rural mobile masts (here).

In addition, in December 2020, it was announced that the CEO of Vodafone UK, Nick Jeffery, would leave in February 2021. The operator confirmed that Ahmed Essam had now become the new CEO of Vodafone UK, effective 1st February, and will remain on the Vodafone Group Executive Committee.

On top of that they’ve been busy discounting their FTTC based “Superfast Broadband” and FTTP (Cityfibre / Openreach) based “Gigafast Broadband” packages, which tends to fuel good take-up of the service, but we’re surprised that their growth seemed to slow down a bit over the last quarter (Black Friday usually has a bigger impact).

Nevertheless, they do seem likely to pass 1 million customers by the end of 2021, assuming their rate of growth doesn’t fall away. Admittedly, this is still a long way behind BT’s consumer broadband base of 9 million, as well as Sky Broadband’s 6m, Virgin Media’s 5.4m and TalkTalk’s 4.2m, but it does help to cement Vodafone as the UK’s fifth largest provider of consumer internet packages. Not an easy thing to do in an aggressively competitive market like this, particularly as they only re-joined it back 2015 (here).

Otherwise, it’s noted that, out of Vodafone UK’s fixed broadband customer base of 876,000, some 450,000 of those are “converged” (i.e. they take a mobile plan from the same operator). Speaking of mobile, the operator’s Pay Monthly base continues to grow, thus pretty much all of this quarter’s decline can be traced back to their pre-paid (PAYG) base.

Finally, it’s noted that mobile data (mobile broadband) traffic across their network increased to a total of 254,465 TeraBytes (TB) during the quarter, which is up from 236,939 TB in the previous quarter.

Nick Read, Group CEO, said:

“I am pleased the Group returned to service revenue growth in Q3 as a result of the continued commercial momentum across our business, including our largest market Germany. Our good trading performance underscores our confidence in the outlook for the full year. We have made further progress on our strategic priorities, including the IPO of Vantage Towers in early 2021, which remains firmly on track and will now include our 50% shareholding in the UK towers joint venture with Telefonica.

Our networks have successfully delivered another quarter of record data traffic as many countries continue to endure COVID-19 lockdowns and customers depend on our services. We have achieved this while further reducing our carbon footprint and we are making fast progress towards our important target of having our European networks wholly powered by renewable electricity by July this year.

I continue to be proud of the hard work of my colleagues, and that of the industry more broadly, who have kept societies connected and supported key sectors such as education and healthcare. Vodafone has now contributed over €150 million since the start of the pandemic, through direct contributions and in-kind services to those in need, and we will continue to help society recover and build back stronger.”

Overall, the operator saw their quarterly UK service revenue increased to €1,216m (up/down from €1,208m in the previous quarter). The full report is here (PDF).


Leave a Comment
10 Responses
  1. Avatar Michael V says:

    Joined Vodafone home broadband back in 2017/2018 [when living with the parent.] Went from Superfast 1 to Superfast 2 for the same price. It’s been a great service & good customer support.
    Definitely something I would recommend.

  2. Avatar Lee says:

    It appears Vodafone are trying to rid themselves of payg customers.
    Either that or force them onto voxi where they will be guaranteed a monthly topup.
    Their pricing on payg is the least competitive on the market especially when it comes to data.

    1. Avatar Bubblesthefish6 says:

      I slightly disagree as my dad has a second payg eSIM on Vodafone PayG that a managed to fashion myself and recently he got a text saying that Wi-Fi calls had been switched on and low and behold they had.

  3. Avatar Carlton Johnson says:

    I’m Vodafone customer and broadband is broaken

  4. Avatar Gp says:

    I have been vodafone broadband customer for 8 months, but the first seven were absolutely traceous.I was constantly cut off and they kept sending out engineers for no reason when was their fault to start with. Mostly every month I have to check my bills cause they keep changing for no reason.I was a pay as you go for many years and was forced to upgrade to pay monthly. I do like Vodafone but they need to start to have call centre agents who are english and not from Egypt,Philippines and so on cause most of times there’s a language barrier which can be very stressful at times especially when you can’t connect.Vodafone needs to stepup their game to compete with the UK giants network providers.

  5. Avatar Stephen says:

    It baffles me why Virgin are switching from EE to Vodafone. Maybe Vodafone are the Happy Shopper of network piggybacking provision or something. I’ve had nothing but poor experience with Vodafone – most recently a couple of weeks back when, after very carefully checking their network banding, and it appeared to match EE’s, I chose a very competitively priced package with their TalkMobile company. Put my SIM in – no mobile data. Had a live chat to be told to go into my APN settings and enter all the settings manually. Still didn’t work. I had to ask 3 times (perfectly politely I must add) before their agent finally agreed to let me cancel (2 days into my 14 day cooling off period). Should I really have had to set up my mobile manually just to get to the data I was paying for..? Put my BT Mobile SIM in last night and it just worked. Surely that’s kind of how it should be.

  6. Avatar John says:

    Been with Vodafone broadband for over 3 years with no problem get around 32Mbs. Was with sky before that and had speeds of 1.3Mbs on standard broadband and then upgraded to sky’s fttc and got a incredible 512kbps!!!! So left sky within the 14day cooling off period. Sky told me the problem was with a curbside dslam but would take a while to fix so left sky.

    1. Avatar Aled says:

      Weird, both Sky and Vodafone just resell BT’s copper network, so the only major difference is the router. Maybe that was duff?

  7. Avatar Galaxy Ash says:

    I don’t use Vodafone Broadband ( not out of choice, I would love to, but I live in Hull) but I do have two pay monthly Unlimited Max w/Entertainment SimO, I joined them full time after leaving EE and the network speed and consistency is amazing, EE have a quality network and good speeds too and both EE & Vodafoneare leagues ahead of O2 & Three in performanceand speed, but in my personal experience, Vodafone out performs EE in everything other than customer service ( which isn’t necessarily good with EE ) Vodafone entertainment packages are absolutely awesome I have YouTube Premium with one and full package Amazon Prime with the other. Othet than customer service, another complaint, albeit petty, they claim to have their own 5G in Hull, but it is definitely still O2’s 5G I am connecting to, mostly noticeable by the spectrum block of 40mhz ad opposed to Vodafone’s 50mhz.

  8. Avatar Aled says:

    I’m quite happy with my Vodafone 80meg broadband and the cost. I did want to check pricing on a sim only mobile plan, but frankly the Vodafone shop is a mess of confusing and semi predatory American-style pricing. I seem to be able to buy 3 different speeds of 4G (premium, economy, budget) with or without 5G and/or trying to upsell Disney+ and Amazon accounts. I hate this kind of nonsense. Just offer me 4G at whatever is the going speed!!!

    I’d be cynical and say several mobile companies appear to have complicated their offerings greatly since Brexit.

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