Man, owning your own SIM card was the bomb back in the days! Saving all your friends’ contact with an accented text, missed calls, and messages back-and-forth… yep, those were good times. However, calls and SMSs were quite expensive – at least to a school or a college attendee. Mobile data really wasn’t a thing back then and despite all the fun, the same problem persisted with owning & operating a SIM card; the expensive cost. It was just not that cheap compared to how things are today. And a couple of months ago, Ncell had come up with the “Sahi Yo! Power SIM” specifically targeting the young audience. It is a low-cost multi-purpose prepaid SIM for the young’uns or Gen Z. So yeah, it’s been a while but here’s our review of the Ncell Power SIM.
Ncell Power SIM Review:
In today’s day and age, making or receiving calls and messages alone simply won’t do. Instead, you’d want to browse the web, stream some music & videos, play a few games, and maybe more. Yet, activating and making use of all these services could amount to a hefty bill – one that may be enough to discourage you from enjoying them again. What if they were all bundled into one affordable little package for all to use? At its heart, this is exactly what the Ncell Power SIM is.
How do I get one?
Getting your hands on a Ncell Power SIM is super easy. It just costs Rs. 99 and besides this, all you need is:
your citizenship card (original)
student ID card (original)
a passport-sized photo
With these documents in hand, you can visit your nearest Ncell Centre or any Ncell authorized shop. Well, this is what’s specified by Ncell in its official documentation but my personal experience was a little different. In the process of acquiring a Ncell Power SIM for the review, all I took with me was the original copy of my citizenship, and an auto-sized photo. I went to the Ncell Centre at Durbar Marg and not a local Ncell authorized shop, so I’m betting it wasn’t something they overlooked either.
Instead, it may be that the company is loosening up on the distribution of the Power SIM to demographic other than students. After all, it is an attractive offer and to think non-students would want to get in on the action isn’t a far-fetched idea either. I filled up the form, submitted it alongside the documents, paid the due amount, and was done within 20 minutes.
You may also download the subscription form, print it out, fill it in, and then submit it to a Ncell Centre or an authorized shop. Better yet, there’s also an option to register for Ncell SIM online. After submitting it, you’ll receive a code that you’re gonna have to take to a Ncell Centre.
A trifecta of benefits!
#1. Power Loaded features
Under the Ncell Power SIM, you can enjoy its benefits in three rounds. First off, there are the inherent bonuses with the purchase of the SIM itself. From that investment of Rs. 99, you get Rs. 20 in main balance, 500 MB data (250 MB 4G + 250 MB all-time), 100 SMS, 10 minutes talk-time, and other benefits. As expected, the free voice-call and message are applicable under the Ncell network only and is valid for 7 days.
Likewise, you gotta use up the 500 MB of data under 30 days. Here, half of it is assigned for the high-speed 4G network while you can use the other half under 2G and 3G networks. Apart from these, you also get services like PRBT (Personalized Ring Back Tone), Sportsie, Sports Video Portal, Daami Music, and Hungama Music Pro worth Rs. 300 free for 30 days.
While the last two are well-known domestic and international music streaming services respectively, most of us are unfamiliar with those sport-centric features. So allow me to briefly go through them.
Sportsie: A community for football and cricket fanatics
Sports Video Portal: As the name implies, it’s a portal to watch exclusive sports videos including match previews, analysis, infographics, etc.
So obviously, I was eager to at least check them out. However, I was met with some rather unsettling complications. None of these services were pre-activated in any way and I was quite confused by that. I’d try visiting each of their app or website and all of them redirected me towards a paid subscription prompt. I thought maybe I gotta manually activate them at first by buying any of the pack and the system would automatically recognize my Power SIM and refund me the money.
But no sir, I had just wasted my balance doing this. At first, I tried getting myself a ring back tone. I was under the assumption that my default PRBT (as Ncell calls it) that I got for free was being overridden by the default COVID-19 message. Nevertheless, buying a separate ring back tone got rid of that coronavirus message and played the music instead. For a day of this service, I was out of Rs. 2.04 (Rs. 1.02 for service activation and Rs. 1.02 for selecting a song).
Then I went on to try out one more “free” feature. I bought the Hungama Music Pro’s 1-day subscription hoping the same but once again I was billed from my main balance. With all this, I tried contacting Ncell’s customer care number or their Facebook page but both yielded no help. After a long while, I did get a response on Facebook saying “The subscription to the services is free. You will need data to use the service. If there is no data, then your main balance will be used.” But that was far from helpful. Therefore, I’ll be trying to resolve this matter by visiting an Ncell Centre pretty soon. So be sure to check this space for further updates.
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#2. On-recharge features
Moving on, the Ncell Sahi Yo! Power SIM also has some benefits if you recharge at least Rs. 100 on the same day that you activate your SIM (within 12 AM). Here, it’s a little misleading how Ncell has worded this condition. If you top-up/recharge Rs. 100, your actual balance will be about Rs. 98 which doesn’t fulfill the T&C. Instead, the ultimate balance amount should equate to Rs. 100 or more for this feature to activate. As a result, I made a top-up of Rs. 105 during my review of Ncell Power SIM. It got me Rs. 102.94 worth main balance and additionally also activated 150 MB data and My5 service.
You’re entitled to the aforementioned mobile data for 30 straight days. If you do not use up the daily quota of 150 MB data, it sadly won’t accumulate to the next day. Besides this, the Ncell My5 service could also be useful to many. With My5, you can add 5 Ncell numbers and make calls to those numbers at a reduced charge.
The usual charge for this feature is Rs. 20/month (exclusive of taxes) but with a Power SIM, it’s free for a year. Once assigning the number(s) in your My5 group, you can call them free of cost for 30 days. After that, it costs Rs. 0.99/minute which is the standard rate in My5 service.
#3. Bonus data on using balance
The final benefit in Ncell Power SIM’s trinity comes in the form of getting bonus data when spending the main balance. For up to a year, you’ll receive 500 MB data (250 MB 4G + 250 MB all-time), when using Rs. 100. This is quite similar to how Smart provides 200 MB + 200 MB data on every recharge of Rs. 100. While the bonus data is low compared to Ncell, you also get 10 minutes of talk-time and 10 SMS free under this.
To see how much you’ve spent during the month, you can dial *17136#. And no, transferring your balance to someone else, or the use of Ncell Saapati doesn’t count under money spent. Similarly, the received bonus data will be valid for 5 days.
Aside from these, Ncell has also come up with two exclusive data packages related to gaming and music streaming. Here, the gaming pack which costs Rs. 140.46 (inclusive of taxes) comes with 2 GB data and free registration of Ncell’s services like Playlive, Gamespark, and Game Plus. It will be valid for 7 days and you can subscribe to it by dialing *17103*1#.
There’s more. The Power SIM also boasts an exclusive music package that consists of 2 GB data and free registration of Daami Music and Hungama Music Pro services. This will set you back Rs. 134.07 (inclusive of taxes) and is valid for 7 days. To subscribe to this package, you can simply dial *17103*2#.
Other advantages with Ncell
Disregarding the bonuses of the Power SIM for a moment, it is also important to note that Ncell’s network boasts the fastest internet. That conclusion comes from research conducted by the NTA. While our test (with Ookla’s Speedtest) corroborates with NTA’s findings, the speeds varied by quite a bit. We got around 30Mbps and 3.7Mbps of download and upload speeds respectively under 4G LTE network; which also consumed the entire 250 MB bonus 4G data btw.
Under the 3G network, the speeds dropped to 8.45Mbps (download) and 3.6Mbps (upload). This test was conducted in Kathmandu district in Jyatha area, where the population density is fairly high.
Likewise, Ncell’s 4G network has wide coverage throughout Nepal; which is now available in more than 1000 cities in 21 districts of the country. Also, a 2019 study by NTA showed that Ncell doesn’t have any call drop problem while the issue persists in other telecom operators like NTC and Smart Telecom. The same study also mentions how Ncell has the fastest call set-up time at 7.68 seconds with a success rate of 94.74%.
Ncell Power SIM Review: Final Words
Therefore, with the reliability of Ncell and the multitudes of benefits like bonus daily mobile data (up to 11 GB), SMS, talk-time, recharge bonus, etc. the Sahi Yo! Power SIM truly is a great option for the younger generation; especially those who are constantly grinding on the social network, playing games, streaming music, and connecting with their friends and family. It offers a lot of features for a basic asking price.