Over the last few months, I have received enquiries about MTN’s 2-hour Simple Surf bundle. MTN Simple Surf is a range of hourly based internet

What's up with MTN Simple Surf?

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Over the last few months, I have received enquiries about MTN’s 2-hour Simple Surf bundle. MTN Simple Surf is a range of hourly based internet bundle plans where you only pay for the time spent on the internet and not the volume of data consumed. The MTN Simple Surf family includes the 2-hour bundle, 20-hour bundle, 100-hour bundle and 300-hour bundle.

Fair Usage Applies
There is a fair usage policy on each bundle though. For example, the threshold on the 2-hour plan is 100MB. The MTN website states: “Please note that your speed will be reduced upon breach of fair usage policy at stated threshold for each plan”. In other words, whenever you use up to 100MB on that service, MTN will lower your browsing speed to check your usage. That’s basically what fair usage policy is about. That information is published at the bottom of the Simple Surf page on the MTN website.

People keep asking me to try out the 2-hour bundle and give my comments. Unfortunately, I have had little incentive to, as the service does not meet my needs. The first time I read the above fair usage policy, I told myself not to go there. If I am being given unlimited data for a 2-hour period, but will be provided limited speeds after using 100MB (and the lower speed isn’t specified), there is no point subscribing. As such, till today, I have not tried out any of MTN’s Simple Surf plans.

MTN Foul Play?
However, this afternoon, I ran into the following tweet:

I suspect that the above statement is not entirely correct. The speed stated may be. But in all probability, the user crossed the 100MB mark after about 30 minutes (hence the reference to 25% time usage) and then MTN dropped his speed. If that is the case, MTN has simply been true to its fair usage policy. In the light of what is stated openly on the MTN website, that is my suspicion. But then, I do not know for sure. Perhaps there is indeed some other foul play.

I am throwing this open then. Have you used any of the MTN Simple Surf bundles? Were you aware of the fair usage policy? What was your experience? Did you cross the fair usage threshold and what was the speed like after that point? Over to you!


  1. When i first subscribed to the time based plan i didnt know of any limitations or the fair usage thing… It’s massively unfair for them to limit usage on a time based plan and deceitful

  2. martinkem,

    Unfair, perhaps. But you cannot accuse MTN of being deceitful with this, as the policy is clearly stated. Limiting user speeds on unlimited plans is a global practice. I read the policy and stayed away, as I knew that it wouldn’t work for me.

  3. Subscribing to a time_based DATA plan leaves you at the mercy of the network speed.

    if your data speed is like a creepy_crawly 12kilobytes/ sec, it means you can only download / use up a measly 87Megabytes before the two hours who elapse.

    Personally, I would not trust the Y`Hello boys with this sort of deal. What if there is no connection within the entire two_hour period? After all, this is prepaid.

    It is often the case that when you are on PayAsYouUse (data charged by the kb), connection speed has a way of going up, Conversely, when on a data bundle, the reverse is often the case!


    Hence, my reluctance to take on any data plansuch as the one here.

  4. They should write their so called fair usage in bold letters, in my experience even with 3g available it dropped to edge speeds, when i swapped sims to the one i had a data bundle active on, it was as fast as 3g should be… Their TV adverts cleverly fools one into believing that’s it’s unlimited.

    Maybe am wrong but an unlimited plan shouldn’t have limits. If it’s time based the only limit should be time and not if u use above 100mb we would throttle your Internet speeds until it’s barely usuable anymore…

  5. i was clocking up to 5Mbps before the 25% mark. I just downloaded about 50mb of data. Then i got a text that i have used 25% of my time (not data) and immediately the max speed i got after sms was just 250kbs. It couldn’t have been a coincidence. For the next 1 and a half hours left it was steady on 250kbs.. It was so annoying. At the end i used about 120mb of data. They have obviously taken their time to calculate the speed

  6. etisalat has the semilar time plan base on EASYNET..EDGE-2G
    I Still prefer the y;llo time plan,..

    you can’t even use time plan on 3G etisalat….

    they’ll always usea confusing grammer or conner/hide the fair use policy on their website…

  7. @michael99uk, thanks for the mtn increased data plan volume info.i may just give them a try. May be after all these their terrible network period is over. I think they are getting ready to get back into the game after having reduced their call rates earlier.

  8. i still dont know why our networks are still so stingy about bandwith … i wonder what they want us to do with all this bandwidth caps and data limitations.. u cant even download an episode of series for almost 2dollars …its complete bullshiit… and no isp is better than the other interms of bandwith. they are simply all the same … i just dont when all this is gonna end.. i checked comcast internet plan their 50mbs speed plan will give 250gb data for a month for 30dollars and they will deduct only 5dollars to give extra 50gb incase u exhaust ur plan before the month runs out… only in nigeria we pay thru our nose to get some some nonsense… imagine paying almost 60dollars for 6gb. aint that high way robbery? only to give u miserable speed…. small time they will blame it on electricity as if they are not making any money in nigeria or other business are not doing great in nigeria.. and our NCC is just another cabal that only knows how to collect bribe.. damn the country is fu**ed >:(

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