So, there's good news and bad news for those of you broadcasting abroad any time soon. The good news is that due to the new EU roaming regulations, if you're heading anywhere within the EU, roaming charges are now a thing of the past. The bad news? Anywhere outside of the EU is still ridden with roaming charges and excessive data costs.
All is not lost, however. There are still methods available to avoid being hit with substantial data fees.
Extended Roaming Plans
Now that all networks offer roaming in the EU at no extra cost, they are looking for other ways to differentiate themselves. To do this, some networks, such as EE and Vodafone, offer extended roaming plans that allow you to use your data in several other countries in addition to EU.
The countries included are normally the most popular destinations such as the USA, Australia, Canada, Hong Kong and New Zealand. This is great for travellers, however not so much for broadcasters.
You see, the average consumer will see these added countries as a luxury which in turn means network providers can charge a lot for them. Broadcasters use high amounts of data so high prices equals very high running costs. On top of that, these popular destinations aren't always the places you need to be, so the higher price won't always mean better value.
Local SIM Cards
Buying SIMs local to the country you are in seems like it's a low cost solution to roaming SIMs as you won't be charged any roaming fees, but is it actually cheaper? Let's break it down.
Okay, so you've spent the last 2 days doing research on local networks and have found the best one for the area. You've worked out that a pay monthly plan isn't a viable option as there would be 11 months of the year that you would be paying for data you don't use. You buy a few pay as you go SIMs, load some money onto them and now you're ready to start streaming. That's the hard part done, right? Wrong.
The problem with pay as you go SIMs is that they can run out of money. Surely you can just quickly top-up and go live again, right? Wrong again. A lot of local SIMs have unique pin codes which need to be entered in order to top-up which not only adds another step to the process, but also makes it difficult to keep track of which PINs are for which SIM. With multiple SIM cards, invoices and now PINs that need to be managed, it makes the whole thing a total nightmare.
No one wants to run out of data during a mission critical broadcast. The easiest way to combat this would be to buy more data than you'd ever need just to give yourself that peace of mind. This however leads to high costs and wasted data if you don't plan on returning to the same country.
On top of all this, you have to repeat the whole process every time you go to a new country. There must be a better way, right? Right!
In comes Broadcast SIM
We have built our network be global from the outset and more importantly, we've built it with broadcasters in mind. We know the pains of broadcasting abroad a little too well and we wanted to simplify it.
Broadcast SIM allows you to connect to over 900 networks in 185 countries worldwide, on a single SIM card, including all the world's major Telcos. Our SIMs will automatically connect to a network as soon as you enter a country so you can set it up once and forget about it.
There's no subscriptions, data caps or minimum commitments so you only pay for the data you use, removing the headache of overage fees or running out of data.
We know managing hundreds of SIMs and invoices can be a nightmare (and expensive!) which is why your data is shared across as many or as little SIMs as you need. This means you don't have a separate plan for each SIM card, saving you both time and money! #DoubleWin
To find out more about how we can help, take a look at our homepage for more information about Broadcast SIM and get in touch.