EE extends Stay Connected plans

21 August 2021   By Dr Lucy Brown, Editor

Mobile network announces new and upgrading customers with EE connected devices or pay monthly data SIMs will be able to access always-on data.

The Stay Connected feature allows customers to use limited mobile data speeds of 0.5Mbps even if their monthly data has run out.

It's now available to Essential and Smart plan customers with devices like the 4GEE and 5GEE mobile broadband hubs as well as data SIMs taken on a pay monthly basis.

At the same time, EE have improved their Apple Watch plans by adding 24 months access to Apple Fitness+ rather than the free trial currently available.

ee tablet in city
© EE

Stay Connected

Stay Connected was first announced in July 2021 as a way for EE pay monthly mobile customers with limited data to stay in touch when their data runs out.

It gives them access to data that is always-on, albeit at a much-reduced speed of 0.5Mbps. EE say this is sufficient to check email, send a WhatsApp message or find a location on Google Maps.

Now this function has been extended across a wider range of EE products, so customers with EE pay monthly data only SIMs will be able to access it along with those customers who purchase tablets, laptops or 4GEE and 5GEE mobile wi-fi devices from EE.

Extending the offer to these plans (especially mobile wi-fi hubs) is welcome, yet it's worth remembering that 0.5Mbps is extremely slow and will only be useful as a last resort.

It may be cheaper for customers to compare unlimited mobile data SIM deals.

Apple Watch

The second major announcement from EE relates to their Apple Watch plans, specifically the Apple Watch Series 6 or Apple Watch SE devices.

The EE Fitness Watch plan will give customers 24 months of access to Apple Fitness+. This covers the length of their plan rather than just the short promotional periods of up to six months usually offered.

Pricing for the Apple Watch Series 6 begins at £35 per month while the Apple Watch SE starts at £27 per month.

Customers looking to add an EE Fitness Watch plan to their EE account will need to ensure they have an iPhone SE, iPhone 6 or later model and will need a pay monthly plan or SIM only plan to be able to connect their watch.

This is the latest instance of EE promoting Apple products after replacing their TV service with Apple TV 4K in 2019 and introducing a special mobile plan for iPhone users in 2020 offering benefits specific to the Apple ecosystem.

Always on data

These latest announcements from EE are yet another sign from EE that they want to offer a comprehensive range of features and products to stand out from the crowd.

Extending the Stay Connected function to other devices was a natural next step, although we would caution against customers using it as anything but a back-up.

Despite the best efforts of mobile networks to encourage customers to take unlimited data plans, many people are happy with their capped data packages and are reluctant to take more expensive plans when they don't think they'll need that level of data.

This option from EE would ensure customers are not left without the ability to send an important WhatsApp message on their way home from work, for example, and that may well be enough for most people.

We'd always encourage customers to check how much data they're currently using before signing up to a more expensive plan - your mobile provider's app or website will provide this information and it's a good way to check your usage when it comes to renewing or upgrading your mobile contract.

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