8 July 2016

NOW TV to launch the UK’s first contract-less bundle

NOW TV are about to become the first UK company to offer a TV, broadband and phone bundle without a contract. Sounds like an awesome deal.. but is it really?
tv-dealsFrom mid-July, NOW TV will be offering a new bundle that includes phone, broadband and TV all on a rolling contract – meaning that, unlike with other providers, you’ll never be tied in and can leave at any time.

NOW TV will be the first supplier to offer a contract-free bundle, and could be paving the way for other streaming services like Netflix to enter the broadband and phone line market too.

Contract-free options are obviously great for flexibility, but are they the best option to save you cash?

Still getting your head round all this bill-paying stuff? Check out our ultimate guide to student bills to get you through the confusion!

What NOW TV Combo offers

now tv combo

If you’re already a fan of NOW TV, their new service may seem ideal to you. Not only do you get access to your fave streaming service, you also satisfy your broadband and phone line needs!

Now TV’s new bundle offers the following:

  • A rolling contract, meaning you can cancel at any time and only be charged for that month. Most other providers will require you to sign up to a 12-month contract minimum, which can be specially inconvenient for students who only tend to be sticking around their student digs September – June. Although Virgin offer a 9 month contract here.
  • Packages ranging from £8-26, depending on the broadband speed you want (they offer between 17Mbps and 76Mbps).
  • Extra Now TV bundles, such as entertainment, films and sports packages (also includes Sky bundles).
  • An option for pay-as-you-go phone calls, or pay an extra £8 a month for all-inclusive calls (if you’re a fan of using the house phone…)

The damage

It’s worth pointing out that although the convenience of being able to cancel at any time could save you cash if you’re unsure how long you’ll be hanging around your current accomodation, you really are paying for that convenience.

The cheapest NOW TV Combo bundle available is £9.99 a month, but don’t forget you also have to pay for line rental which costs £17.99 a month. That makes the cheapest Combo package around £27.98 a month!

You’ll also be charged an initial set-up fee of £40 (£50 for super-fast internet) which includes your NOW TV Smart Box and Hub. This means your first month will set you back a minimum of £67.98.

It is possible to opt out of paying the initial set-up fee at the start, but in return you’d need to agree to sign a 12-month contract with them… which kind of defeats the purpose of a contract-free deal, right?

Is it a good deal?

Broadband Cables

So, at first glance, the NOW TV Combo deal seems awesome, but you’re really paying for the flexibility of being able to leave at any time. In fact, you could even get a better NOW TV deal if you opt outside of the bundle.

We did some calculations to work out if you really are getting the best deal with NOW TV Combo, and found two potential alternatives that work out cheaper:

  1. If you don’t care so much about the TV, you can get much better broadband deals – check out your cheapest options here.
  2. If you do want TV included, you could also go for one of the much cheaper broadband deals from the link above, and grab a deal on a NOW TV box, since it’s also possible to buy the box separately without having to pay initial set-up fees, etc.

We’ve done some in-depth calcualtions and comparisons and found that having the freedom to cancel any time only works out cheaper on the broadband option if you want a package for 4 months or less and only works out cheaper on the option with TV if you want the deal for 6 months or less.

Therefore, it’s worth having a think about exactly what your needs are and how long you think you’ll be wanting to sign up for (or not sign up for!).

You can still stream a lot of your favourite shows from iPlayer and 4OD free of charge (provided you watch them an hour after they’re broadcast) until January 2017, when TV licensing laws are set to change.

Until then, grab yourself a good broadband-only deal and stream your fave shows and films (it makes it easier to binge-watch too!).

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