November 03, 2009

Virgin TV without the phone

It's always been a frustration that Virgin only offers it's TV packages with a telephone line. But at long bloody last they now are offering them as "standalone" too andyou can now get Virgin TV by itself in three flavours:

Virgin TV M+ is £11.50 a month

Virgin TV L is £16 a month

Virgin TV XL is £27.50 a month


Tom Chiverton said...

I see what they are saying but still implies you have to take a phone line, for instance.

PS know anything about when the new V+ boxes and/or cable cards are bring rolled out ?

Nialli said...

The site's not updated, but Ben from VM says it is so and he's a good source.
Don't know about any roll out of the new Samsung V+ boxes - they are being issued where required but it's not an actual replacement programme as far as I know.
The new cards are being rolled out in Yorkshire I believe at the moment - it's being done region by region.
Best place to monitor this is over on Cable Forum

Alexei said...

Ive never had phone from virgin? I just rang them up and said I wanted tv but not phone and they said that was fine?I've had just tv for two years and no phone

mattbuk said...

I've never had a phone line with Virgin and I have been with them since 2007 - when i moved a few months back they asked if I wanted one installing - I said no - they had no problems with it.

Square eyes said...

I have had services with what is now Virgin for the last 10yrs maybe longer, and you have never had to take out a phone service, unlike certain other TV companies.

I would like to comment on the Samsung V+ box, they are not going to be rolled out as a replacement to the existing boxes, the will be given to new customers of Virgin if they are the only boxes available, this means if the older V+ box is still in the depot, they will be issued first.

The Samsung box will be only be issued if all the older boxes have gone from the shelves.

Nialli is quite right there will not be a replacement programme.

Getting back to the phone line, for all the people who were either with NTL or Telewest, they will know that you never needed a phone, however NTL did charge their customers a line rental fee if their customers only had TV services. When NTL merged with Telewest that charge was removed because Telewest customers did not get charged, this practice has continued with Virgin.

Mark said...

Yes, really rather a non-news story! Virgin have always simply promoted heavily their packages of TV, phone and broadband and cleverly worded their website and adverts to imply ( as Tom Chiverton says in post one) that customers must take a phone line.
It was always possible not to have a Virgin landline, it was just deliberately kept rather a secret!
I think Virgin's recent telephone pricing structure (calls are far more expensive than other providers) has forced them to more easily allow non-telephone subscriptions or risk people leaving or (worse) not signing up at all.

Square eyes said...

I'm sorry Mark, but Virgin have never nade a secret of the fact you don't need a phone line, that is why when you go on their website and build your own bundle package, you can select whatever services you wish.

That to me does not make it secretive or missleading it seems quite clear!!!

Nialli said...

It was news to me. When I originally signed up with NTL ten years ago they were quite adamant that it was TV + Phone or nothing, and I ended up paying for a phone line we never used (work supplied me with a BT line at home so the second line was superfluous). I believe they'll be marketing the "new" TV only price so that they can show that their TV offerings are competitively priced with Sky.

Mark said...

"I'm sorry Mark but Virgin have never made a secret..."
I think you misunderstand me, I wasn't saying it was a total secret-just never mentioned in ads for bundles or suggested by Virgin staff without a prompt from the customer! The "implication" (as Tom Chiverton says in post one) is also still in the wording of the website.
The new "openness" is clearly so that they can advertise a price without phone line (just as Sky does) but with the added bonus of still being able to have broadband if required. It won't stop their telephone landline service being the most expensive, however.

Square eyes said...

"It won't stop their telephone landline service being the most expensive, however"

Are you on about Virgin phone line, because if you are then I am sorry but you are wrong. Virgin is actually cheaper than BT for line rental and landline call charges. BT's call plans are cheaper than Virgins and yes they do give you free 0845 & 0870 numbers, however you only get those free if you have their unlimited call plan on all other packages you pay for them.

Nialli, I have worked for these companies for over 10yrs, and NTL were renowned for not being completely honest to their customers, but it is true that NTL customers could just have a TV service which was their "Family Package" but customers would pay the same as a customer who had a phone service as well.

The roll out of the new smartcards, is to combat against chipped boxes

Mark said...

"Virgin is actually cheaper than BT for landline rental and call charges"
I haven't paid a penny to Virgin (or BT) for landline calls for over two years now, having installed a First Telecom "dialler" which diverts all call charges to them. Far cheaper than either.
As this blog is supposed to be about High Definition TV services on cable, I don't propose to discuss this matter any further.

Chris said...

I've had TV without a phone line for one year this is no secret.

Hubert said...

I too have had XL and now XXL broadband + XL TV and no phone since January 2007.

Regarding the Samsung V+ boxes, I really want one to replace my Scientific Atlanta box. My girlfriend just got one for a new Virgin install in south Manchester and the menus seem much faster than on my sluggish SA box. The box is also significantly smaller and nicer looking. Can I report it broken and get it swapped? I'd be willing to pay for a box upgrade if they'd let me.