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Globe PowerSurf vs. Smart Always On

Smart first introduced the volume-based pricing plan for mobile phones with the Always On and was followed by Globe with their PowerSurf plans. Both might seem to offer similar packages but allowed for some differences depending on consumers’ usage patterns.

Let’s look at the plans being offered on Smart Always On and Globe PowerSurf.


Here’s a shortlist of the differences between the two carriers:

  • Smart Always On offers more price plans with 7 compared to 3 for PowerSurf.
  • Always On has the cheapest package at Php20 for 25MB.
  • Globe PowerSurf 99 is the best bargain at 50MB for 30 days. Assuming you only use FourSquare, Php99 a month for almost unlimited access is great. It’s also the cheapest monthly plan.
  • PowerSurf 299 at 300MB is cheaper than Always On 300 at 250MB.
  • PowerSurf 499 at 1GB is cheaper than Always On 750 at 1GB.

I’ve tried the Always On 20 and Always On 30 on my Android phone before and works well. I tried Always On 200 yesterday on my Smart Rocket and it was good but very expensive.

I’ve also tried PowerSurf 99 on my iPhone and it lasted me 3 days but that was with some web surfing included. I subscribed again and now on my 6th day with PowerSurf 99. Not bad.

Anyone out there using PowerSurf or Always On on their smartphones? What’s you usage like, how much are you spending and which one’s the best fit for your usage.

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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40 Responses

  1. deuts says:

    You failed to mention in the differences between the two that those Globe Powersurf plans are only available for postpaid subscribers.

  2. konqueror7 says:

    i believe PowerSurf is available to both, only with different options and promo periods.

  3. markem says:

    powersurf volume-based is only available to postpaid subscribers while smart always on is for prepaid subecribers only (i think).

    hope globe will offer powersurf volume-based to prepaid as well.

  4. Julie says:

    Globe’s offer is way too tempting than Smart’s Always On but too bad, it’s only open to postpaid subscribers :(

  5. yosoymach says:

    I used the Smart Always On 300 on my iPad2 and I used up 96% of 250MB in 2 weeks. My consumption was heavier than usual since the DSL at home got knocked out for a few days because of Pedring.

  6. paul e. says:

    i’ve been using globe’s powersurf P99/50mb plan for the past 2 months. it’s more than enough to suit my mobile surfing habits. have to admit, though, that i’m on a non-smartphone (Sony Ericsson Aino).

  7. imitator101 says:

    I’ve been using PowerSurf 499 since Sept. 23. I’m using it to view and write in this article now.

    I’ve been tracking my data usage and so far I’ve only used 35% (355 MB) of the 1GB that I availed of. I think it’s definitely worth it.

  8. flipflap says:

    @Imitator101 how did you track your usage? Are you on postpaid?

    @yugatech on powersurf do you get notification when you’re about to reach your limit?

    • imitator101 says:

      Yes I’m on postpaid. I’m on Android and there are two apps I use:

      3G Watchdog
      – tells how much data you used per day/week/month
      – gives an estimate how much you’ll use up by the end of your promo term (in this case 1 month)

      Onavo Lite
      – tells you which Apps use the most data
      – warns you if an App you installed is data friendly

  9. Francis says:

    Do you get notified (via sms) once you consume the 50mb of powersurf?

    • Sonofa says:

      never received a text from globe…
      i even reached 75mb on my P99 powersurf

    • irv says:

      yeah, Globe’s SMS notifications seem to be broken.

      I’m on Powersurf 299 that has supposedly ‘expired’ 2 days ago. Never received any notifications. I was spamming the ‘powersurf stat’ command every day and it’s giving me the same msg since the day i subscribed.

  10. Jeff says:

    Have been using using Powersurf 299 for almost two months already. Ok naman so far kasi sa office at sa bahay may wifi naman so I only use the 3G/HSDPA when I’m out.

  11. Frances says:

    Been using Smart’s always on plans on my Android phone and it’s been pretty good.

    Connection is fairly fast and I rarely use up 80% of the max data cap (that’s with tons of surfing, tweeting, facebook, foursquare, email). I’ve only tried it on prepaid, but my sister has been using it on postpaid as well. You get a notification when you’ve consumed 80% of the data cap of the package you’re subscribed to.

  12. Smart can’t outsmart Globe.

  13. jay says:

    when will Sun Cellular be coming up with this kind of service for their subscribers????

  14. zer0ice says:

    I used Always ON 300 twice. I never reached 25% coz there’s always WiFi around wherever I go (SM Malls, office, at home).

    Now, I’m thinking twice of subscribing again on my next billing cycle. Yeah, I know it’s not dependent on it. I just wanted to sync my plan with this service that’s why I’m waiting. Also, I’m going to compare 3G Watchdog versus Norton app (which is mainly the reason why I wanted to wait) and see which one is more accurate.

    Lastly, I think the best would be to have a 30-day, low capped plan, like Globe’s. Problem is, I’m on Smart postpaid and have no plans to switch at all.

    Bummer. :-(

  15. rhk111 says:

    Mahal pa rin talaga dito sa Pilipinas ang 3G. I tried using “iKool” 3G internet in Bangkok, Prepaid, and they were offering 1GB valid for six months, for only P280.

  16. Paeng says:

    Been using Globe’s 499 Powersurf for 2 months now. Some things to point out:

    -3G connectivity really depends on where you are.

    -Globe NEVER sends out SMS notifications regarding the 50% usage of your 1GB cap.

    -I use the Network Usage app on Android (although I am not 100% sure if it shows accurate information, ie I think some of the mobile data usage is shown in the WiFi data.

    -My last bill shows ‘additional’ 3G usage on top of the 499 (so I am guessing I went over the 1GB cap last month although I am not so sure about that)

    -I haven’t tried Smart for the longest time so I guess there is no way of comparing the two networks.

    -Looking pricing alone, I think Globe’s is way more attractive.

    – I hope Globe would have a mechanism (app, SMS inquiry, customer service) to show you/let you know your ACTUAL data usage.

    • flipflap says:

      thanks! i’m on globe postpaid also

      we are on the same dilemna. i use 3g watchdog also to check my data usage and i also use droidwall to only allow email to use 3g data. i had my email configured to download only headers and about 2kb of email content. i am subscribed to 100mb tack-on. my last months data usage was only 20mb but i got charged “additional” because i exceeded daw my usage of 100mb. when in fact i was really very careful not to exceed the 100mb limit. i called customer service and filed a ticket to have my data usage reviewed. up to now i’m still waiting for feedback. i ended up telling customer service to deactivate the tack-on and internet. i’d like to see first if i really exceeded the allotted 100mb. btw my bill did not show how much kb out of the 100mb allotted i used it just showed me i exceeded 100mb and i got billed the excess

  17. andy says:

    if provider will find out that more customer are subscribing in this bucket way, they will kill unlimited internet.

  18. bili.ph says:

    Kung ok lang sana ang connection ng Globe sa lahat ng areas sa QC pwedeng pwede na yung Globe Powersurf. Sa east ave. lang ako actually nakaranas ng ok na signal pag nag iinternet with Globe.

  19. Marl says:

    if only powerSurf is available in prepaid.

  20. Prince says:

    From what I know this is only available for postpaid subscribers.

    For prepaid they have a different offer:
    Globe Powersurf 15 – for P15, subscribers can surf the internet for 1 hour, spending only P0.25 for every minute of internet use, with a validity of 1 day.
    Globe Powersurf 30 – P30 for 3 hours, valid for 1 day.
    Globe Powersurf 50 – P50 consumable for 5 hours, valid for 3 days.

    I think for prepaid users they have to turn ON/OFF their Data whenever they just need to use it for time not to be consumed.

  21. Mln says:

    Is the power surf for postpaid deducted from the consumable amount you are allowed to use or is it an additional charge? I have plan 1799 and tend to use most of it.

  22. harley son says:

    i am on smart’s unlimited data and indeed it is unlimited. i have tried abusing the and it(smart) never disconnected me. i am a postpaid user and i loving smart for it!

  23. Winston says:

    If you’re subscribed to a bucket plan (consumable data), an app for Android called My Data Manager Free can monitor your data-usage. I can’t vouch for its accuracy but it’s a good way of getting an overview of how much data you have consumed. :)

  24. rorymabangis fanatic says:

    salamat Abe for this info! and sa mga kababayan nating gustong magtipid regarding sa mapang abusong TELCOs..

    have you heard the wi-free? ito po ung UNLIMITED INTERNET EVEN WITHOUT LOAD USING WI-FREE FOR SMARTBRO AND GLOBE TATTOO.. just PHP300.00, youre unlimited for a month..

    share ko lang po.. just my twelve cents..



  25. ace avellana says:

    ive been using smart always on 300 for a month now. and im quite satisfied. i primarily use it to get rss feeds and the occasional fb statys uppdates, emails and then there’s always 4square! :D

    and you know what i only got to around 75% of the 300mb!

  26. Name: Al Ace says:

    i have inet connection for free for more than 1 year now with a Globe prepaid only…advice for data volume-based plan users, there are special mobile browser w/c can cut down up to 70% of data consumed..so if you’re a heavy user like me who can use up to 100 mb/day on mobile,may you can give it a try..

  27. franz says:

    Use OPERA MOBILE. It can cut bandwidth expenditure by 70%.

    Using ALWAYS ON 200 with my X10i. It is rather slow when using facebook and foursquare but faster than the globe and smart dongle which are always crappy.

  28. Alger says:

    How can i unsubscribe to always on 20 guys.anyone who could help me?

  29. Rechelle Mae says:

    Can I use Always on in my laptop? Whats the best but cheapest package should i use…? help me pls.

    • Lani Garcia says:

      Yes, you can use your mobile phone as a modem for your laptop, even a lot easier if it has hotspot tethering.

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