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Sky Mobile review 2024: a great customer service record

Sky Mobile logo with a phone and a SIM cardVisit sky.com

The retailers featured on this page may compensate us when our readers follow links to their websites and make a purchase. More

We joined Sky Mobile for real on SIM only to see how their 4G/5G coverage and data speeds shape up and try out their added benefits. Last updated: 22nd November 2023.

Overall rating

SIM Sherpa rates Sky Mobile as a very good option
 (3.5/5, very good)

"We found being on Sky Mobile a very slick experience. Ordering’s easy, their app is great and everything just works out-of-the box. It’s easy to see why they have among the fewest customer service complaints.

They're not the fastest network for data speeds but the 5G rollout is helping. For calls and texts, we don’t think there’s a provider out there with better coverage. WiFi calling steps in when needed too.

Removing inclusive EU roaming has dented Sky’s score with us. Their daily charge will make travel to the continent more expensive, though it works out very competitively in popular non-EU destinations.

But there are plenty more extra benefits to Sky Mobile that keep our rating high. Keep data for 3 years, stream Sky TV without using data and very-well priced, flexible phone contracts. There’s a lot to like about Sky."

The 3 best bits

1) Excellent UK coverage
2) Unlimited Sky TV app streaming
3) Keep mobile data you haven't used

The 3 worst bits

1) EU roaming charges re-introduced
2) Slower than average 4G speeds
3) No free Sky TV content

Is Sky Mobile legit?

Absolutely. Sky are an absolutely massive company and their mobile product is one of the slickest virtual mobile operations in the country. They’re 100% legit.

How long is a Sky Mobile contract?

It depends on the product. Their SIM only plans are on 12-month contracts. Their phone contracts are 36 months long (Swap24) or 24 months (Swap12). Tablet contracts can even be 36 months or 48 months!

Which network does Sky Mobile use?

Sky use the O2 network. They access O2’s 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G networks.

Can I port my number to Sky Mobile?

Absolutely. It works the same as any other network. Text your old provider on your old SIM with the word PAC to 65075 and give the code to Sky when you join or at any point in your contract.

What happens at the end of a Sky Mobile contract?

You’ll continue to pay for your monthly airtime (your SIM with its minutes, texts and data) on a rolling basis. If you had a device as part of a phone or contract tablet, that will be paid off and you will no longer have to pay for it.

Information symbol We're a professional reviews website but we bought our Sky Mobile SIM card as a regular consumer, to test what it's actually like for real life paying customers. The contents of this review are a combination of our expert industry knowledge and what we experienced during our test.

Sky Mobile's network

Coverage for calls and data is excellent in our eyes

Map showing Sky Mobile's coverage

Most places on Sky’s map have signalCheck signal here

at Sky.com
(opens in new window)

Sky Mobile are a wholly separate brand from O2, however they still use O2’s network to provide 2G/3G/4G/5G signal. That’s definitely a good thing when it comes to coverage:

You should get call signal (2G/3G) in most places on Sky Mobile, unless you’re in a geographically strange location. And these signals are broadcast on frequencies that are great at getting into buildings.

4G data signal on Sky Mobile is probably a bit less extensive than rivals EE and Vodafone. Sky’s coverage in urban areas is usually as good as other networks, but you can find yourself booted down to 3G rurally.

We popped a Sky Mobile SIM into a test phone and did some spot checks in the city and out in the countryside. We found no built-indifferences between being on Sky Mobile vs being on their hosts O2.

It was very rare that we would be kicked down to 3G signal (H or H+) instead of 4G data signal in towns and cities.

Their indoor coverage is also genuinely impressive. We didn’t lose call signal in any part of the house on Sky. With some networks you have to stand next to a window or outside to make calls, but not on Sky.

It’s a good idea to use Sky’s signal map here to check coverage in the places you’ll use your phone, such as at home, at work or anywhere else before you join them.

Useful link: Read differences between Sky and O2

Our coverage rating:
★★★★☆ (excellent)

Joint 2nd
(out of 14 providers)

Not as good as:
EE, BT Mobile

Better than:
Three, iD Mobile, SMARTY

4G data speeds can be a bit disappointing

Sky Mobile 5G banner

Their faster 5G does help with thisLatest 5G news

at Sky.com
(opens in new window)

Sky may have great signal coverage courtesy of their network hosts, but data speeds are less of an impressive story. Sky unfortunately use the slowest UK network for typical 4G speeds.

That’s backed up by the latest report from network testers Opensignal who measured typical 4G speeds of 19.3 Mbps on Sky’s hosts. That is an improvement from the last report, but is still the slowest of any network.

We did some speed tests of our own in different locations, and our average wasn’t too different from Opensignal’s measurements. We averaged between 16.95 - 18.00 Mbps over 4G.

Speeds went as low as 5 Mbps in some areas, while in the city centre we got speeds up to 90 Mbps. We rarely got speeds above or below that range. They are the slowest network for 4G, but it’s not always noticeable.

That’s especially the case when you’re just browsing the internet or social media. We were even able to stream HD Youtube videos without buffering, so it’s not like you’ll be slowing to a crawl on Sky.

We also tested speeds on our Sky SIM directly against what we got with our O2 SIM with the same test phone in the same places. We found no evidence of built-in speed limits on Sky vs being on O2.

That’s similar to the speeds you’d get over lower mid-range broadband. You’ll usually be able to stream HD videos without too much buffering, but data-heavy things like file-sharing will be noticeably slower.

If you’re somewhere with strong 4G data signal then speeds shouldn’t really be an issue on Sky, but they’re not mind-blowing either.

Useful link: What difference having 5G will make

Our speeds rating:
★★☆☆☆ (average)

Joint last

Not as good as:
EE, Three, Vodafone
(and other providers that use these)

Same as:
O2, Tesco Mobile, giffgaff

5G in an impressive number of locations but speeds are unreliable

Sky 5G map

Get 5G signal in lots of areasFind 5G locations

at Sky.com
(opens in new window)

O2 are constantly expanding their 5G network, which is certainly a good thing for Sky. They offer access to O2’s widespread 5G network on every plan so long as your phone is a 5G-ready device.

That means you get 5G in a huge list of 2000+ UK towns and cities. And coverage in these locations is usually widespread, but still only on a street by street basis.

It’s very simple to get the 5G add-on with your plan. You just need to add it to your account on their website. After that you’ll get immediate access to 5G. Look out for this:

Adding 5G in the online account

We got 5G in the exact places where Sky’s coverage map said we would when we tested with our iPhone. But they don’t show signal strength on their map, so you can’t really tell how good 5G will be near you.

When we tested 5G speeds at the fringes of signal coverage, we got speeds of 17 Mbps, slower than being on strong 4G signal. But we got super fast speeds near to a transmitter in a train station:

Screenshot of 5G speed test on Sky Mobile

You might run into issues getting 5G to work an Android devices. We couldn’t get 5G to work with our manufacturer-bought Motorola on Sky and we even had to change the settings to get 4G to work.

Opensignal and Speedtest showed typical 5G speeds sat between 75.0 Mbps - 78.88 Mbps on Sky’s hosts, with peak speeds up to 208.14 Mbps. Their 5G is slower than other networks, but it’s still an improvement over 4G.

We struggled to get 5G to work on 5G-ready Android models not bought from Sky directly. Check their supported device list here. If your device is supported then they’re a good network to join if 5G is a priority.

Useful link: How to get Sky's 5G

Our 5G rating:
★★★★☆ (good)

Joint 4th
(out of 14 providers)

Not as good as:
EE, Three, Vodafone

Better than:

WiFi calling and 4G calling are excellent features

Screenshot of Sky's WiFi calling help page

Not a lot of supported Android phonesSee supported phones

at Sky.com
(opens in new window)

You can run into indoor calling blackspots on any network, even ones with strong call signal like Sky, especially if there’s anything in the way between you and the mast. This is where WiFi calling comes in handy.

This lets you connect to calls over WiFi instead of conventional call signal. Sky offer this as well as 4G calling which does the same thing with 4G. Their scheme is decent, but a bit behind these networks.

We couldn’t get WiFi calling to work with our Samsung Galaxy S7 that we got from the manufacturer themselves. The devices not on this list probably won’t work with Sky’s WiFi calling.

When we tried it with our iPhone 7 using the same SIM WiFi calling worked without any issues. But WiFi calling only “kicked in” once we lost call signal entirely.

Sky say you can transfer a call from WiFi signal to 4G signal without it dropping, but we couldn’t get this to work in our previous tests. We will test it again and update this page once we’ve done so.

They’ve updated their scheme so you can now send and receive texts over WiFi/4G signal. And they say you can transfer from a WiFi call to a 4G call without it dropping, but we still need to test this to make sure.

You can check Sky’s help page here to see if your device is supported before you join them. They support most iPhone models, but the lack of Androids supported might be a pain for Android users.

Useful link: Sky's WiFi calling help page

Our rating:
★★☆☆☆ (average)


Better than:
All others

Extra network features are one of Sky’s strengths

Sky Mobile hotspots

Free WiFi hotspots around the countrySee nearby hotspots

at sky.com
(opens in new window)

Sky offer a big network of free WiFi hotspots around the country. These are helpful for saving a bit of data on the go. But anyone can use these, not just Sky users. So it’s not an exclusive benefit for joining Sky.

Tethering is also allowed without limits, letting you turn your phone into a personal hotspot to connect non-data devices to. But this will eat your data quicker and Sky don’t offer unlimited data plans.

Call forwarding is also included on every Sky plan which lets you forward incoming calls to another number. This is handy if you don’t want to be bothered by calls on your SIM.

Visual voicemail is also available on Sky Mobile. This lets you sort through your voicemails individually on-screen rather than listening through all of them. You can also customise your voicemail message.

The only major thing Sky miss out on are eSIMs. For now it’s mostly just the main networks that offer these, but we imagine Sky will introduce them sometime in the future.

Useful link: Best networks for WiFi hotspots

Our rating:
★★★★☆ (good)


Not as good as:

Better than:

Sky Mobile benefits

Their streaming data benefit is the best of all networks

Sky Mobile Watch banner

It’s the best part of their networkRead full details

at Sky.com
(opens in new window)

Sky offer unlimited streaming data for their TV apps on every phone and SIM only contract. This lets you stream these apps on mobile data, without eating into your monthly allowance.

It’s a genuinely generous benefit that lets you stream your favourite shows and movies on the go without worrying about your data usage. We tested it in real life and found it worked just as we expected:

To test out whether or not their unlimited streaming was really unlimited we left the Sky Sports app streaming on data for a few hours.

After letting it stream for three hours we returned and found our phone said we had used up 3GB of data, which would have used up our whole data allowance:

Screenshot of app data usage showing 3GB

But when we checked our data allowance, we saw that we hadn’t used a single MB of our monthly allowance, even after coming back to it a few days later:

3GB data left screenshot

This scheme is genuinely unlimited. We did our tests using our Virgin TV log in for Sky, meaning that you don’t necessarily have to be a Sky TV customer to benefit as the free data applies to the apps themselves.

You’ll usually eat through your data allowance very fast by streaming video, so you can save a lot of data each month with this benefit. What’s even better is that it’s even included on their cheapest plan:

The only downsides are that you need some data leftover for the benefit to work, it doesn’t work while roaming abroad and you need to be a Sky TV customer to access all the channels. Other than that it’s brilliant.

Useful link: Read our full Sky Mobile Watch review

Our rating:
(best choice)


Better than:
Three, EE, VOXI

Way better than:
All others

Data rollover is better on Sky than any other network

Sky Mobile's Roll data rollover scheme

3 years to get through your unused dataHow 'Roll' works

from Sky's detailed guide
(opens in new window)

Data rollover lets you hold onto the data you didn’t use in one month to use in your next month(s) (read our guide here). Sky include this benefit on all deals and their scheme is far beyond what other networks offer.

Usually networks that offer data rollover only give you one month to get through your unused data. However, Sky give you 3 years(!) to use up your leftover data.

We very rarely get through our entire monthly allowance of data. That means we racked up a lot of unused data. You can see how much you have in your Sky Mobile account just like how you’d view a bank statement:

Screenshot of data activity

It’s easy to manage your piggybank. All you have to do is log into your account and it should show up as one of the first options there.

Screenshot of claiming data from Piggybank

You can take data out of your Piggybank if you or someone on your account has got through their data allowance. You can gift as much data as you need to any user. But it will take some time to go through.

Sky even let you cash in your rolled over data for discounts on a new device or accessory from Sky’s store:

Screenshot of Piggybank rewards

Their Piggybank scheme is simple to use and helps you make sure you’re getting the best value for your data. You can read the full details of their scheme here if you’re unsure about something.

The data you didn’t get through at the end of the month will go into your Piggybank. If you or someone on your account gets through all their data you can take some out 1GB at a time to avoid extra data charges.

Sky let you gift your rolled over data to other users on the same account, or you can use it to get a discount on a new device from Sky. In all, we think a lot of users will like the sound of this scheme.

Useful link: Read Sky's full guide to how data rollover works

Our rating:
★★★★★ (best choice)

Similar to:

The lack of inclusive EU roaming is something we don’t like

Expired stampSky Mobile roaming passports banner

You have to pay extra to roam abroadSee the latest countries

at Sky.com
(opens in new window)

Sky removed inclusive EU roaming from their plans a while ago. You have to pay for every day you use your allowance abroad in these 40 EU/EEA destinations.

You have to pay £2 a day to roam in the EU. They do let you use up to your entire data allowance while abroad. But the lack of inclusive roaming makes them a poor choice for going to the EU in our eyes.

Roaming was turned on automatically, so we didn’t have to go fiddling around in our account settings to get it working.

Just after we turned off flight mode we got a text from Sky welcoming us and giving us all the information about roaming costs in the destination we were in.

We got 4G where we expected we would and both signal strength and data speeds were healthy.

Overall, we like that Sky’s EU roaming works without any issue, just like it does in the UK. But we haven’t tested it beyond the EU.

One upside is that this £2 a day rate also applies when you roam in these worldwide destinations. That’s decent value for roaming beyond the EU, however going anywhere else does get expensive fast.

If you often go beyond the EU then Sky are a decent choice. But going on trips to the EU will cost a lot more than it would on a network with inclusive EU roaming. So we think Sky aren’t great for roaming overall.

Useful link: See all Sky Mobile roaming costs and charges

Our rating:
★★☆☆☆ (average)

Not as good as:
All others

Same as:
Tesco, VOXI

Their data gifting scheme is handy for families

Share leftover data on Sky Mobile plans

Gift your banked up data to other usersHere's how it works

from Sky's own guide
(opens in new window)

Sky Mobile let you have up to 5 different plans on one account. This is helpful for families or a tight-knit group of friends who want to keep their plans in one place through one billpayer.

While you don’t get any straight up discounts on your additional plans, Sky do let you share your banked up data between users if you need (that’s why they’re on our list for the best mobile family plans).

Gifting data is a great way to stop users going over their monthly allowance if another user doesn’t get through much of theirs. That can stop heavy data users from racking up a large bill for extra data.

It’s a handy scheme, but we imagine most people would rather get a discount on extra plans. SMARTY offer this with 10% off added plans.

Useful link: How sharing unused data works

Our rating:
★★☆☆☆ (average)

Better than:
All others

There are also some smaller benefits you might like

Tesco's capped contracts

Set flexible overspending limits on SkyHow to set a cap

at Sky.com
(opens in new window)

Every network has to let you set a limit on extra spending, but Sky let you set it in flexible £1 increments anywhere between £0 - £100. This is great if you’re worried about racking up a huge bill on extras.

You can also switch your plan up or down every month on Sky. If you switch to a bigger plan it will change right away, while you’ll have to wait until your next bill date to switch to a smaller plan.

Sky also promise not to up the cost of your deal while you’re on your contract. That applies to their longer 36-month phone contracts, which is really generous.

Overall, Sky offer a bit of added flexibility with your plan which just makes things a lot easier to manage.

Useful link: See costs for going over limits on Sky

But you might prefer what other networks offer

VOXI Unlimited Video

A few providers offer free trialsRead their FAQs

at voxi.co.uk
(opens in new window)

You might assume that Sky would include free trials to TV services as a reward for joining their mobile network. But Sky don’t offer any of these (existing TV customers do benefit from unlimited streaming data).

EE offer subscriptions to Apple TV+, Apple Music, Netflix, BT Sport. And Vodafone include a subscription to Amazon Prime, Youtube Premium or Spotify Premium on their Entertainment plans.

Data add-ons are quite expensive on Sky (1GB for £6 a month) and they don’t offer any unlimited data deals. So if you’re a heavy data user you’ll have to be careful on Sky, or else you could end up spending a lot.

You will also have to pass a credit check to join a Sky Mobile plan, which might be hard if you’ve missed payments in the past. There are no PAYG bundles or any other ways around this on Sky.

Sky let you take add-ons to lower the cost of calling abroad. But these cost £3 a month and only reduce the cost of international mins rather than just giving you some. Sky aren’t a good choice for calling abroad.

Useful link: The best networks for free subscriptions

Sky Mobile deals and plans

What type of deal are you interested in?

Choose an option to skip to the right section:

Special offers running on Sky Mobile

Here are the latest promotions on SIM only or phone contracts.

SIM only plans from Sky Mobile

Use our price comparison tool further below to find the right deal

Key facts about Sky Mobile's SIM only plans

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Phone contracts from Sky Mobile

We go over the kinds of contracts you get on Sky

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Sky’s phone deals have upsides and downsides

An example of a Sky Mobile credit agreement

All phone contracts based on financeHow the loans work

at Sky.com
(opens in new window)

Sky’s phone contracts are all based around finance agreements, which are essentially loans Sky give you to buy a phone from them. You’ll pay off this loan over 24 months (Swap12) or 36 months (Swap24).

It might be tempting to join on a 36 month contract as the monthly payments are lower, but the total cost of your phone will be higher on these. If you pay over 24 months you’ll pay more per month, but less overall.

You’ll have to pass a credit check to join any Sky Mobile phone contract. Sky will check your history of making payments and if you’ve missed some in the past they will potentially reject you.

Sky do let you pay off your loan before your contract is up, which is nice if you want to upgrade or leave your contract. But you do have to stay on it for at least 12 months. We cover this in more detail below.

Useful link: How Sky’s credit agreements work from Sky’s help guide

Sky’s early upgrade scheme isn’t particularly appealing

Sky Mobile Swap contracts

Give up your phone to pay off your loanHow 'Swap' works

from Sky's guide
(opens in new window)

With Sky’s Swap scheme, you can upgrade after 12 months (Swap 12) or 24 months (Swap 24) by trading in your phone. Sky say the value of your phone in good condition should be enough to pay off your remaining credit agreement.

But we find it hard to get too excited about this. After 12 or 24 months you will have already paid off more than half the credit agreement. To then give up the phone you’ve been paying for could smart a bit.

You might also be able to get better value for your device by selling it yourself privately or via other services and use that money to pay off your remaining credit agreement. It pays to research before taking Sky’s price.

And if your phone is in even slightly worse condition than what Sky expect then you might not get the whole amount back, meaning you’ll still have some of your loan to pay back despite not having your phone any more.

Useful link: Read more to see if Swap is right for you

Pay As You Go isn’t an option on Sky Mobile

Expired stampSky Mobile Pay As You Use

No way to pay as you go on Sky

Sky haven’t offered a way to pay as you go on their network since their now long defunct “Pay As You Use” scheme. You have to join on a contract on Sky Mobile.

giffgaff are your best choice if you’re looking to pay as you go on O2’s network. But their rates are still quite high, so they’re only a realistic option if you use your phone infrequently:

However, 1pMobile are the cheapest network for pay as you go rates by a mile. And they use EE’s fantastic network:

There are a few good Pay As You Go schemes out there. You can see all of them in our guide here.

Useful link: Read our 1pMobile review

Sky Mobile customer service

Sky are one of the best at helping their customers

Ofcom customer service data for Sky

Fewest complaints of all networksRead Ofcom's report

Ofcom are the government’s regulator for the telecoms industry. So if customers can’t get their issues resolved with their mobile network they can make a complaint about them to Ofcom.

The more complaints Ofcom get about each network, the worse their customer service looks. In Ofcom’s latest report, Sky have stayed at 2 complaints per 100,000 customers, which is fewer than the industry average.

And you can visit a Sky store. It’s a bit annoying that Sky don’t offer an online chat. If you’d rather not call them, the only way to get help is to use their online help articles and you’ve got to be tech savvy.

Being on Sky is usually a smooth experience. We never had to call them as they’re good at telling you about your bill dates, direct debits and anything else by text. And their app is also handy for managing things.

Useful link: Read Ofcom's latest telecoms report

Our customer service rating:
★★★★☆ (good)

Not as good as:
Tesco, Three, EE

Better than:
All others

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