You can get sustainable food, sustainable banks, and sustainable super, but the next ethical option might just be a mobile provider, as Felix looks set to show.
Not everyone has the same love for their mobile provider, and depending on who you regularly pay for the privilege of connecting your phone, you might have words.
It’s entirely possible that you might be happy with what your telco delivers, and it’s also possible that you’re not, but if you’re someone who yearns for their utilities to be as ethically-minded and environmentally-focused as you might be, you might not have much luck finding telcos that think the way you do.
While technology companies are gradually coming around to being more environmentally responsible, telcos might be more of a work in progress, though this week, Australia appears to be getting one of those.
It’s a new small telco coming from Vodafone and TPG, launching a mobile provider that aims to not only be sustainable, but also simple, arriving with one plan to offer a fairly direct approach to mobile access for not too much, delivering a $35 monthly plan with unlimited access.
Felix’s $35 unlimited option is the company’s only mobile option, and delivers unlimited calls and texts to mobiles in Australia, plus unlimited mobile downloads capped at 20Mbps, a little faster than the ADSL-like 1.5Mbps maximum Australia’s “unlimited” plans typically offer. It’s a 4G-specific plan using Vodafone’s network, however, with no support for 5G whatsoever, meaning folks with a recent 5G phone, such as an iPhone 12 or iPhone 12 Mini, will see their connections top out at 4G speeds.
However Felix is focusing on something beyond simplicity, with a green angle to its tiny telco, too.
The mobile virtual network operator is reportedly running on 100 percent renewable electricity, making it carbon neutral, and will plan one tree for each month a customer holds onto their Felix plan.
“Felix’s single plan, app-first approach is part of our goal to deliver a digital mobile brand that starts conversations – through simplicity, outstanding customer experience and by having a positive impact on our planet,” said Paul Tierney, General Manager of Business Development at Felix.
“We are giving customers the option of a mobile plan that not only offers great value but also helps to reduce their carbon footprint, through our commitments to renewable electricity and reforestation initiatives with the goal to plant one million trees,” he said.
One thing worth noting is that Felix doesn’t sell phones, so if you’re looking for a phone through its telco, it’s very much a BYO state of affairs. That means if you are considering trying Felix out, you’ll need an unlocked phone, as that’s one major point of difference between it and other providers.
UPDATE (March 2021): Felix has increased its maximum download speed from 5Mbps to 20Mbps, so this article has been updated to reflect the change.