Virgin Mobile is a UK-based mobile phone service company. Virgin Media, a subsidiary of Virgin Media O2, owns it. Notably, Virgin Group established the company in 1999 as the world’s first mobile virtual network provider (MVNO). Being a virtual operator, Virgin Mobile does not operate its network. Hence, this article aims to determine if does virgin mobile use o2 network to provide services to its subscribers.
Virgin Mobile is not a ‘well behaved’ mobile network in the United Kingdom. The mobile operator uses the network towers of other major providers. Because the Virgin Mobile network is provided by three distinct networks, determining which principal carrier offers the service is a bit difficult. The article will attempt to untangle it for you.
Virgin Media struck a five-year arrangement with Vodafone to run their MVNO platform at the end of 2019, effectively ending their long-term supplier relationship with EE. However, the MVNO contract was doubted once Virgin Media UK (Liberty Global) and O2 (Telefonica UK) announced their intention to merge only a few months after the Vodafone deal was signed. Many uncertainties have arisen due to the merger, such as whether Virgin Mobile uses the O2 network. You’ll find out soon enough.
Does Virgin Mobile use O2 network to offer its services?
Are you one of those people who wonder, “Didn’t I read somewhere that Virgin Media and O2 had merged?” So does the MVNO use the O2 network to offer services to its customers? In June 2021, Virgin Media, the parent firm of MVNO, and O2 completed their merger. You’d think Virgin Mobile would be switching back to the O2 network shortly, but that isn’t the case for the time being.
Vodafone and the virtual operator agreed to a five-year deal, which will begin in early 2021. However, Virgin Media O2 said in November 2019 that they had signed a new 5-year MVNO contract with Vodafone, allowing them to start 5G services in the UK in January 2021. They went on to say that they had given the notice to discontinue the MVNO agreement following the formation of the Joint Venture.
It’s impossible to determine what Virgin Mobile’s future holds, as ambitions to merge O2 and Virgin services look to clash with its contract with Vodafone. It’s worth noting that no date has been set for Virgin Mobile to begin using the O2 network. However, if further information becomes available, we will update this page.
What Network Does Virgin use then?
Are you curious to know what does network Virgin Mobile uses if it does not use the O2 network now? The MVNO operated on the EE network from when Virgin Group launched Virgin Mobile in 1999 until recently. The actual logic, on the other hand, is as follows. The One2One network was leased by the group when it initially started the company. One2One then became T-Mobile, which joined with Orange to form EE. BT purchased the EE network, which is still active today.
Virgin Mobile announced in 2019 that it would be canceling its contract with EE and switching to the Vodafone network in 2021. The shift began in January 2021, with new Virgin Mobile subscribers signing contracts or upgrading to 5G service on Vodafone’s network. Many existing Virgin Mobile subscribers were running on EE while the transition took place.
Virgin’s new network host, Vodafone, continues to be the UK’s second-fastest provider. However, Vodafone’s median download speed (between 25.2 and 58.5 Mbits/sec) is less than half that of its main competitor (EE). Although the network coverage is excellent, it is not as extensive as its competitors’, particularly in rural regions. If you experience a weak cell signal in those places, you can improve your network coverage by purchasing the best cell phone booster for rural areas.
Vodafone’s (Virgin Mobile) reliability is excellent, receiving accolades for reliability in twelve of the UK’s sixteen significant cities. Only three out of sixteen large cities in the United Kingdom do not have 5G coverage; thus, Vodafone’s 5G performance might be better.
What do Virgin Media and O2 merger mean to Virgin Mobile?
This merger between Virgin Media and O2 was established to provide Virgin Mobile with a complete set of services. As a result, the MVNO is equipped to take on BT/EE head-on.
Virgin Media previously had a mobile service, but it was an MVNO (mobile virtual network operator), which means it connected its consumers to another network’s mobile service. After using EE’s network for a while, it now uses Vodafone’s network. That is, however, about to change once more.
The MVNO will most likely increase its connectivity options, such as gigabit fiber broadband and 5G, due to the merger. Virgin Mobile customers will no longer need to search for ways to boost cell signals at home for free due to increased connectivity.
Virgin Media O2 offers the whole package with the fastest broadband and most dependable mobile network in the UK today. Virgin Mobile is ready to shake up the market and be the competition that the country requires when a choice is more crucial than ever. The MVNO will connect more people to help businesses flourish and fuel the UK economy by investing and innovating in cutting-edge infrastructure and future technology.
What does the merger mean to exist O2 and Virgin Mobile customers?
If you’re an existing O2 or Virgin Mobile user, you won’t notice much of a difference at first – at least not beyond the masthead on your bills. However, in the coming months, you may be offered more comprehensive tariffs and plans that include other services, such as 5G.
Virgin Mobile users’ network connectivity will most likely be shifted from Vodafone’s to O2’s system. We don’t know when this will happen because Virgin Media has a contract with Vodafone until 2026. The contract may continue till the end of the year 2026.
It’s also possible that Virgin Mobile users will be given the option to transfer to O2 contracts. When this happens, you may notice changes in network coverage, particularly with 5G, where different networks currently have varied strengths and weaknesses in location coverage. Meanwhile, if you’re having trouble with dropped calls when hiking, it’s time to invest in a portable cell phone signal booster for hiking.
How do UK network coverage on O2 and Virgin Mobile compare?
Virgin presently uses Vodafone’s network, whereas O2 has its own. However, because Virgin Media recently acquired O2, Virgin Mobile may be forced to use the O2 network in the future.
For calls and messages, they’re both second-best options. The O2 and Vodafone networks cover almost the same percentage of the UK’s landmass. Notably, both have a robust indoor call signal because of their frequencies’ ability to penetrate barriers. The only significant difference is 4G data. Virgin Mobile offers significantly better 4G reception in rural regions than O2. However, there is a slight variation between them in densely populated places.
Virgin Mobile and O2 pay monthly plans now include 5G as standard. The main networks are racing to be the first to offer 5G in as many regions as possible, and they will claim coverage of a site even if it is only a tiny portion of it. Virgin presently serves the same 120+ places like Vodafone, whereas O2 claims to serve 190+. We’ve observed that O2’s coverage in those areas is more consistent than Virgin’s; thus, we give O2 the edge in terms of 5G coverage.
How do Wi-Fi calling and hotspots compare on O2 and Virgin Mobile?
Wi-Fi calling is available on both networks. If your phone’s cell signal is weak, Wi-Fi calling allows you to connect to calls over Wi-Fi. As a result, it’s critical to guarantee that your Wi-Fi signals are stable by boosting them. An internet booster is one approach to improve a weak Wi-Fi signal. An internet booster works to ensure consistent Wi-Fi signals throughout your home.
Wi-Fi calling on O2 works with more phones and won’t drop your call when switching from Wi-Fi to 4G. Virgin’s supported phone list is frustratingly limited, and your call will drop if your Wi-Fi connection is lost.
Virgin Mobile and O2 both provide free Wi-Fi hotspots to their subscribers. However, Virgin has by far the most extensive hotspot network. On any Virgin Mobile plan, you’ll have access to over 4.3 million hotspots. O2, on the other hand, has a more moderate 15,000+ hotspot network across the United Kingdom. However, these are accessible to everyone with a phone. The sole exclusive benefit of being on O2 is that you can instantly log into 7000 of them.
Virgin Mobile is a well-known UK-based Mobile Virtual Network Operator. As an MVNO, it relies on another provider’s infrastructure to offer network coverage. Most people believe the MVNO uses the 02 networks because its parent firm merged with it. However, this is not the case because it already had a contract with Vodafone, and it will continue to utilize its network until the contract ends. However, Virgin Mobile is set to switch to the O2 network soon.