Econet launches contract mobile phone plans

Staff Writer Avatar
Econet Contract Mobile Phones

Today, Econet launched a new contract (post-paid) package for mobile subscribers where, if a customer has a minimum salary of US $250, they can get a free mobile phone on contract. We contacted Econet for details of new mobile plan and got some interesting facts you’ll want consider if you’re thinking of getting yourself a contract ‘free’ mobile phone.

First, the mobile phones available on contract are the 3 below. The Huawei G2200C and Nokia models 1680 and 2330.

Econet Contract Mobile PhonesBasically these are feature phones. Don’t expect any fancy smartphone functionality. Without a contract Econet sells the Huawei G2200C and Nokia 1680 for US $24 and US $54 respectively

So which phone do you get for what?

If you have a net salary of US $250 you get the Huawei G2200C. You will be required to pay a minimum monthly fee of US $20 which gives you US $20 worth of airtime (about 90 minutes). For the Nokia 1680, you need a net salary of $350 and you’ll pay a minimum monthly fee of $30 and have $30 worth of airtime (about 136 minutes). Then finally if you have a a net salary of $450 you’ll get the Nokia 2330, pay a minimum monthly fee of $50 and get the same value it as airtime (about 227 minutes). If you don’t use all your minutes they do not roll over. That is, you lose them and start over the following month. The contracts are 2 years long.

The plan sounds reasonably fair until you ask about the walk out penalty. The Econet sales person we asked for details told us walking out of the contract before expiry date would attract a penalty equivalent to the monthly fee multiplied by the number of months left in the contract.

Considering the Huawei G2200C and Nokia 1680 cost $24 and $54 respectively when buying them off the shelve (without a contract) for me the contract walk out penalty is a deal breaker here. Say for example I have the Nokia 1680 plan which requires me to pay US $30 monthly and I decide to walk out of the contract 6 months before it expires; why would I want to be charged US $180 for a $54 Nokia phone I’ve used for a year and half already.

UPDATE: We had contacted Econet PR earlier to have them confirm what the Econet Sales person at the Econet shop in Harare was telling us. Here’s the explanation we got: if you decide to walk out of the contract,

The payment will be calculated using the straight line reduction, that is handset value over the 24 months contract tenure. say,  for instance, a customer terminates after six months, the amount payable will be calculated to cover the remaining eighteen months as follows: 18/24 x Initial Handset Value. Remember, the handset is given to you free. There is, again, no obligation to pay off the contract, but only the free handset.

So, it does turn out the sales person was wrong. This is worrying as we visited this particular person twice today and on both occasions they gave us the same facts. We even recorded the second conversation and got the person’s name.


  1. Martin Mujoko

    get your facts right and if you dont have please ask. when you walk out you repay the value of the phone only and leave not the whole amount. Stop hating

    1. Soul Kabweza

      We got that information from an Econet Sales Person at Chitepo & Mazoe. Assuming you’re an Econet employee, you might want to call them and make sure they got all the facts right.

    2. Soul Kabweza

      hey Martin, just passed by Econet Chitepo & Mazoe on way home. Asked them same question and got same response: monthly fee multiplied by No. of remaining months to walk out. You really need to give them a call hey…

  2. bells

    The plans are not really attractive to a person like me, maybe if they put in more attractive handsets and some more incentive, but as is, y would i want to be stuck with a silly phone for 2years, even assuming i can get rid of the handset and just continue paying the monthly bill it still doesn’t attract me

  3. Greenpois0n

    Day light robbery!!! I mean $50 worth of airtym and it aint rolled over?????????? Considering that nokia 2230 aint even a desirable smartphone wat the hell would u spend $50 on???

  4. Kurai

    Hahaha, the phones on offer sucks, they should try something else. Do these people even do market research. Who do they keep coming to the market with half baked and sour deals…………..I bet not many people will go on contract on these dull phones. I will stick with my Chidhina and go to the internet cafe

  5. Sirius

    3rd option you pay $50(=R350)/mth and you get 227mins not rolled over for $54(R378) phone. to me for that option at Vodacom, I could get an iPhone 4 with about 300mins rolling over a month longer, with 100MB data. in my opinion after reading the many comments and articles on Econet, I believe that the company is indeed a ripoff company. IN this day and age of 3G and smartphone, they issue out such mediocre packages to their potential clients.

    The assumption I believe is that I will get the deal, dump the nokia and use a blackberry/iPhone instead as thats what may happen. Also the 227mins will not be used because you will not be able to make the calls on their congested network. calls will drop so that means you free mins will be quickly used up. dropped call rate? 50-70%(according to my friends and relatives) so in essence you will use about 135mins average per month (correct me if i am wrong)

    On the sales guys in Econet shops, that just basically tells you the kind of company Econet is. Lack of knowledge, communication, poor sales pitches, lackluster packages, high tarrifs, congested network, etc.

  6. pirato

    Well Here is RSA the walkout fee for a contract with free phone is a penalty of Cost of phone + Balance of payment, that is monthly fees x remaining months. So what the sales people said could be what they were taught during their training and now the company changing it´s posts. People must read carefully the fine print on the contract forms themselves. In RSa as well minutes do roll over but only for a month in most packages

  7. JamesM

    If you want to serve money and control your cell phone bill go with prepaid. Contract is just a status symbol label considering all the ways we now have for communication, skype, tweeter, sms etc. What’s the point of a contract line unless you are a business outfit? For personal needs I am sticking to my prepaid thank-you!

  8. Atmosn

    Kikikikiki Econet yakanwa doro shuwa. One would think they would offer a phone that has better internet capabilities or a smartphone kwete Nokia 1610.. And guess what the minutes don’t roll over just like a prepaid and just in case we haven’t charged you enough you have to pay extra for data..

  9. Zimstyles

    What I am actually curious about is why are they limiting this to the small phones. Secondly what happens if I use all my minutes? Does the phone cut automatically? It would be great if they brought that package back for some of us who are budget conscious.

  10. Rmunyuni

    econetsi is mad!!!!!!!!!!!!!