OVO Mobile Review: Niche sport streaming
OVO Mobile runs on the Optus 4G network and offers exclusive sports and entertainment content, but is it the best MVNO for your needs?
This MVNO has been around since 2015 and is one of the few smaller telcos in the market that is genuinely trying to differentiate itself with a unique sports streaming angle, rather than joining the rat race for pure data-per-dollar value (though it does a bang-on job of that too).
Let’s take a look at OVO’s mobile plan offerings and see if its bonus perks and features are complemented by quality SIM inclusions in our review.
The best OVO Mobile phone plan
OVO offers a unique range of plan types: prepaid mobile plans, kids’ mobile plans and prepaid mobile broadband (data-only) plans.
A big perk of OVO’s prepaid plans is that unlike some other prepaid providers who count a month as 28 days, meaning you pay for an extra month per year, OVO’s plans are a full 30 days.
OVO’s other big drawcard is OVO Time: you’ll earn up to an additional 10GB every 30 days for all the data you spend streaming sport and entertainment on OVOPlay. See our OVOPlay section for further details on what’s included.
If you’ve chosen to go with OVO, you might want a fair bit of data to stream all that content you signed up for on the go. For that reason, our best pick for a sufficient amount of data at a friendly recharge price is OVO’s $34.95 per month Large plan.
How does that compare with my other options?
If you aren’t interested in the sport and entertainment content exclusive to OVO, consider Circles.Life’s $28 monthly plan that provides a whopping 40GB plus unlimited national calls and text. At the moment, the new MVNO is offering its 40GB monthly plan for $10 off for your first 12 months (usually it costs $28 + $10 data add-on for 40GB monthly).
OVO tablet and mobile broadband plans
If you don’t need calls and texts and just want to stream until your heart’s content on your 4G tablet, then OVO has a bunch of plans just for you.
However, the way they’re currently priced means you actually get a better deal with OVO’s mobile plans, saving about $15 a month for the equivalent amount of data – plus you get calls and texts if you want to make giant iPad sized calls, too. We’d recommend looking at the plans above for your tablet.
The cheapest OVO Mobile plan
If you’re simply looking for the cheapest mobile plan available from OVO, its Mini Mobile Plan offers 2 GB of data, 500 standard minutes for national calls and unlimited national text.
While the OVO Mini Mobile Plan might suit your needs if you’re trying to limit your kids’ streaming and talk time while remaining SMS available, the Mini is a great option but this plan might be a little light for the average user.
That’s why it’s worth considering the next cheapest options from OVO, the MiniPlus Mobile Plan and the Small Mobile Plan. For $14.95 per 30 days, on the MiniPlus plan you’ll get 4GB of data as well as unlimited national calls and SMS. For $19.95, the Small plan offers an extra 6GB of data, scoring you 10GB per month all up.
How does the cheapest OVO plan compare with other deals available?
If your main concern is getting the most value out of your plan, you might want to check out Circles.Life’s great SIM-only offerings.
Currently, for $18 per month, Circles.Life’s cheapest plan provides 20 GB of data as well as unlimited calls and SMS in Australia, which is a seriously good deal (ending 10th January 2020). This promo lasts for 12 months when your plan will revert to $28 per month.
What is OVO Mobile?
OVO says it’s for the fans – and by that, it means connecting fans from under-served sports and entertainment to streams via OVOPlay. Sure, it’ll provide you with decent data limits and unlimited calls and texts on the Optus 4G network – but if you’re signing up for OVO, you might be more interested in its content.
It also prides itself on being Australian owned and operated. Its largest external shareholder is Southern Cross Austereo who runs a bunch of major radio stations in Australia, including Triple M and the Hit network. It’s no surprise then that OVO features exclusive content from those networks for customers.
You might find some better data deals elsewhere, but if you love sports that get neglected by the big guys such as gymnastics, badminton, esports and netball, OVO has got you covered.
What can I watch on OVO Play?
If you’re into a sport or hobby that you can watch and Telstra, Foxtel or Optus hasn’t scraped the rights up, you should check out what’s on offer at OVO Play.
Its data plans are generous, however not quite market-leading, so content is its real selling point. Strangely, OVO Play is no longer unmetered on OVO prepaid plans so it’s worth monitoring your data-usage via the iOS or Google Play app.
OVO’s included content includes:
- Australian Professional Drag Racing Series
- Australian Esports League University Cup
- Badminton Australia
- Formula Drift
- Gymnastics Australia
- Hit Radio Network
- Triple M Radio Network
- ACT Brumbies Super Rugby
- Water Polo Australia
- Chinese Super League football
- Aussie Pro Wrestling
- World Badminton Federation matches
These sports are free to stream but if you’re an OVO customer, you can bank up data for streaming via your prepaid mobile SIM. Strangely, OVO’s plans no longer offer unmetered streaming so the data you’re gifted back is only making up for what you’ve already used.
Network and Coverage
Who owns OVO Mobile?
OVO claims to be entirely Australian owned and run, with all of its directors and shareholders locals. Its largest external shareholder is Southern Cross Austereo, which owns major Australian radio stations including Triple M and the Hit network.
What network does OVO Mobile use?
OVO is a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO), which means it doesn’t own its own physical network and leases space on one of the big guys. In this case for OVO, it runs on Optus’ 4G Plus network.
Optus’ network covers over 98.5% of the Australian population, and unless you’re living in a really remote area, it’s hard to find a dead spot.
Does OVO offer bundle deals?
If you’re after a handset bundled with your OVO plan, you’re a bit out of luck, with all of OVO’s plans prepaid and without any phone repayment options.
However, if you’re after a phone outright, OVO does sell refurbished Samsung Galaxy and Apple iPhones. These include relatively cheap Samsung Galaxy S8 and Apple iPhone 7 devices.
If you love your content and need to get a device bundled in with your plan, we recommend Optus to fill in that gap for you. There you get access to English Premier League, National Geographic content, data-free content streaming and the same mobile network.
OVO contact and customer service
While telcos in general are not known for good customer service, make what you will of its average 3.4/5 star rating on Product Review.
You can call OVO at 135 686 on weekdays between 9am to 8pm AEST and weekends and holidays between 10am to 6pm AEST. Alternatively, you can contact them via online web chat or get in touch through their social channels Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.