NT$499 unlimited 4G mania grips Taiwan

Taiwan is in the grips of frenzied buying of an unlimited 4G plan for NT$499

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Taiwanese wait in line for special 4G deal. (Breaking News Commune photo)

Taiwanese wait in line for special 4G deal. (Breaking News Commune photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- Long lines are snaking about mobile phone service providers across Taiwan after Chunghwa Telecom launched a Mother's Day special offering unlimited 4G for NT$499 (US$16) per month yesterday (May 9).

Yesterday (May 9) Chunghwa Telecom (CHT) announced a Mother's Day special offering unlimited 4G internet for low price of NT$499 per month. As the offer is only in effect from May 9 to May 15, many Taiwanese leaped into action to grab the special deal.

Today, long lines are being spotted at mobile service dealers across Taiwan. A user of the Facebook group Breaking News Commune (爆廢公社) around noon today posted a photo of customers lined up around the block in front of a Chunghwa Telecom store in Yilan County.

The Facebook user said that a long line had formed in front of the store well before the doors had open. Meanwhile, netizens in Taipei, New Taipei City, and Kaohsiung have all reported similar scenes at CHT branches, with a store in New Taipei City's Banqiao District seeing over 300 customers by 10 a.m., according to Apple Daily, while a PTT user reported a store in Taipei's Shilin District staying open until 12:03 a.m. this morning. In an effort to reduce the long lines, CHT today said that it has added manpower.


Huge crowd gathered to buy the plan last night. (CNA image)

The offer includes the following features and terms:

  • 30 month contract
  • NT$499 per month
  • Unlimited internet
  • Free calls within the CHT network
  • 180 minutes of free calls outside of CHT network

Alternatively, for NT$299 customers can receive 12GB per month in internet usage, the first 5 minutes of a call within the network for free and 70 minutes of free calls in and outside the network and to landlines.

Within two hours of announcing the Mother's Day special, CHT's competitors Taiwan Mobile Co. (台灣大哥大) and Far EasTone Telecommunications Co. (遠傳) announced similar deals.

Taiwan Mobile announced a NT$499 special that also includes unlimited internet, and 180 minutes of free calls in and outside the network and to landlines, which will also be in effect from May 9 to May 15.

Far EasTone also announced NT$299 and NT$499 specials starting on May 9 that were similar to the offers provided by CHT and Taiwan Mobile.

Netizens ridiculed the frenzy over the 4G special:

"It won't be long before there is an NT$99 special."

"I thought it was a line at Costco."

"Next month, it will be NT$399 and they're throw in a free TV, electric fan and fridge."

Another netizen joked that people are not longer asking each other "Have you eaten yet?" Instead, they ask "Have you 499 yet?"