The new pay-as-you-go price service from 3 - called 'WePay' - will see customers rewarded with a cash credit for calls and texts they receive. So with 5p per minute for calls received and 2p per text received, it really does pay to be popular on 3.
Customers claim their cash credit each time they purchase a new WePay Top-up voucher - the credit can then be used to purchase any 3 services, from texts and calls to buying music tracks and watching TV on their mobiles.
For example, when a customer receives a five-minute call, they earn enough credit to send two texts, or send a picture message or watch the highlights from two episodes of Coronation Street.
Graeme Oxby, 3's Marketing Director, explains: "It pays to be popular. Anyone who regularly receives calls and texts could end up much better off by moving to 3. You pick up, we pay up; it's as simple as that.
"The introduction of WePay means we've raised the bar on rewarding loyal PAYG customers and at the same time created a way for everyone to enjoy music and TV on their mobile."
WePay is the next development in 3's mission to bring better value to UK mobile users. The pre-pay market is notoriously complicated with a plethora of tariffs and special offers.
In response, consumers have had to adopt increasingly sophisticated strategies to find the best value, from only using their mobiles off-peak to owning several different handsets on a variety of networks and tariffs. Continental Research's Autumn 2005 Mobile Report suggests that as many as 5.9 million consumers in the UK now carry more than one phone.
3 devised WePay, in combination with low outbound call and text rates and the largest range of 3G handsets available on pay-as-you-go, to create a compelling reason for consumers who make and receive a lot of calls and messages to move to 3, port their number and use 3 as their only network.
It currently takes at least seven days to port your number in the UK, whereas in other countries such as Ireland and Pakistan, it takes just a couple of hours.
Marketing Director Graeme Oxby continued: "Because the process can be slow, only a fraction of people on PAYG port their number when they get a new phone. Our new reward for picking up calls and texts makes it worthwhile for consumers to move their number."
As part of its new Pay-as-you-go service, 3 will also launch a range of stylish new handsets designed by fashion designer Roberto Cavalli for its PAYG customers.
The WePay tariff is available from 1 February 2006.
How it works
A customer on WePay who receives 100 minutes of calls and 50 texts a month will earn 6.00 credit. He or she can claim their cash credit when they purchase a new WePay Top-up, and the credit can then be used to purchase any 3 services.
WePay cash credits are valid for 30 days.
As soon as a Top-up is purchased the 3 customer has 30 days to generate as many calls and texts as possible in order to earn maximum cash credits again.