If you are a Spark broadband or mobile customer who is currently enjoying a free Lightbox subscription get ready to binge watch the last of your shows because the free service as part of your mobile or broadband plan is about to finish.
As part of a deal with Sky – who recently announced they are entering the broadband market in early 2021 – earlier in the year, Spark sold its entertainment streaming service Lightbox in a deal that was worth $6m.
As part of the sale agreement, the customers that Spark had who qualified for a free subscription were allowed to retain complimentary access to the service until the middle part of 2020 and as we enter June that time is coming to an end.
Sky announced yesterday that the newly merged Lightbox and Neon service will launch on July 7 2020, just over one month away, and as part of the agreement, the new combined service will “no longer be included free of charge in Spark mobile and broadband plans," a Spark spokeswoman confirmed.
In a sign of loyalty to their customer base, Spark broadband and mobile customers will be able to buy the newly merged service at a discount of $4 per month, meaning it will cost $9.95 per month instead of the current Neon subscription price of $13.95 - with new-release movies costing extra.
When Spark were questioned about the end of the service by reporters from the New Zealand Herald a spokeswoman said "Because we have made this change all customers are entitled to exit their Spark plan or leave Spark entirely if they would prefer until 15 July, without paying an early termination fee (for fixed-term plans) or a notice period fee (for pay monthly plans)".
This makes for a great opportunity for Spark customers who may have been drawn to Spark broadband due to the value add benefits as part of their plan, including Lightbox at $12.99 of value each month, to exit without penalty.
Spark broadband plans are currently priced from $85 for unlimited fibre broadband and $99 for unlimited ADSL or VDSL broadband. By comparison, at Broadband Compare we have a number of providers partnered with us on exclusive offers that start from just $62.95 for unlimited fibre and $67.95 for unlimited VDSL or ADSL. Switching provider will therefor save at least $260 per year – more than enough to cover a subscription to the newly merged Neon / Lightbox streaming service with significant change to spare.
Spark never detailed how many of its customers were receiving the Lightbox service for free as part of their broadband or mobile plan and at the time of its sale, there were 130,768 active Lightbox users, including those accessing for free.
If all those customers were to consider switching to a new provider there could be almost $34,000,000 in savings generated for Kiwi consumers.
Compare broadband plans and providers today – you may be surprised at the options out there and how much money you could potentially save.