Smart Postpaid plans are actually just a prepaid sim with advance payment

    We’ve been following the postpaid plans of both Globe and Smart for the past 5 years and we see the progress of the two telcos in offering competitive pricing and data packages. In the recent, #TechTober month we saw the Huawei Mate 20 Pro and iPhone Xs series battle out in who offers the best package for both Smart and Globe.

    While its still a matter of preference in telco, data package, content, and even cash-out, the ultimate factor in a postpaid plan is the monthly fee and total cost of ownership. That’s why here in Hungry Geeks, we try to provide the best comparison who offers which plan is more affordable in the whole 24 months plan.

    Smart is a clear winner in total cost of ownership of iPhones with 300 pesos cheaper monthly payments and that’s still Php7,200 in 24 months.

    While for Huawei Mate 20 Pro – Globe emerged the winner against Smart with their more competitive pricing even at Plan 1299. Globe is around Php5,000 cheaper in the overall total cost of ownership as compared to Smart.

    Check out – Globe vs Smart Mate 20 Series Postpaid Plans

    With this insight, Hungry Geeks recently purchased a Smart iPhone Xs Max 256GB. Priced at 3,899 (Plan 1499 + 2400 Handset Monthly Fee) for 24 months. That’s a total cost of Php93,576.

    I was asked to shell out 3 months of advance payment amounting to Php11,697 which they said a standard procedure for new postpaid subscribers. At first, they said its required to be auto-debited into my credit card for the monthly fee, I declined as I always take advantage of paying my bills via GCash or Paymaya for the bill rebates.

    This November, my first billing statement came in with the Php11,697, 3 months advance payment reflecting when I got the plan and phone. But I was surprised that my bill jumped to almost 4 months in amount, I was just advised for a pro-rated amount for the time I used my plan from November 1 until November 12th.

    So, aside from being billed 3 months in advance, Smart already started billing me for my next month’s (1/23) payments for the amortized device + the GigaX Plan 1499 for the period of 11/13/2018 – 12/12/2018.  (Just to remind you that I got the billing 11/12 and this is a POSTpaid plan, which you should pay after the service)

    With three breakdowns in my billing about the handset which are “Advance Handset Amortization Fee”, “Handset Cost”, and “Amortized Device Cost (1/23). So, to make it simple, Smart asked for 3 months advance payment while they start to bill you on the next month.

    Clarifying this billing details to a Smart Customer Care hotline via *888, they clarified that the advance payment is an amortization for the end of the contract, while they bill you monthly for the current billing cycle using the phone and plan.

    This is contradicting to the things the Smart Converge store mentioned that I should just pay minimal on my next billing cycle as there is an advance payment for the handset of 3 months. If you connect the pattern, Smart just simply asked advance payments in your pocket to pay for the current month, a completely different experience with my Globe Postpaid which charges you in your expenses after the billing cycle, hence that’s why its called POSTPAID.

    As early as now, I can simply summarize that

    • Smart “Postpaid” GigaX Plans asks for 3-months advance payment to cover the charges of your upcoming billing cycle. As compared to our experience with Globe, they charge you AFTER the billing cycle.

    Aside from being billed immediately for the next month, the advance 3 months can only be utilized at the end of the contract.

    • The billing sent by Smart Postpaid represent the additional charges done previously and the monthly fee you availed for the current month, hence you pay in advance for the Plan while add-on charges are billed in post billed.
    • You can only utilize the advance payment at the end of the contract, so its like you gave Smart funds to utilize. I could have simply invested in stocks or VUL insurance that could make my handset advance payment of Php7,800 to be bigger in 24 months. It’s like I gave Smart “collateral” of one month in this case.
    • While the total cost of ownership might be more affordable with Smart, your initial cash out is way bigger as compared to Globe. In our next comparisons, we will also weigh in cash outs as a metric for this.

    So in an analogy, the plans are simply like you got a prepaid sim and loaded it in advance for the charges you will use for the month. In this case, Smart should really do something about this as they are cheating on their customers in the service “Postpaid” should really do.



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