Bundles mwitu is the term we use on social media and the streets to describe data bundles you buy from third parties that are not affiliated to Safaricom. They are quite popular with the young people especially those in colleges. With more and more Kenyans getting online via mobile, bundles mwitu came in to fill a void that had been created by what was deemed as prohibitive data costs. Not many have a fibre connection in their homes or reliable hotspots at work or school. Even then, the issue is mobility. The need to be connected everywhere you go. On your smartphone. Whatsapp. Instagram. Twitter. Facebook. Vine. YouTube. Generally, social media. Throw in the occasional email and viral blogpost from Njoki Chege, Ghafla, Mpasho or Daily Post that one must read.
However, things have changed a lot since the start of this month. Airtel moved to woo customers with Unliminet and Safaricom now has new rates. It is simply illogical to go for bundles mwitu anymore. Not at the rates they were charging previously and since it was a business of small margins, there’s nothing to indicate that bundles mwitu rates will drop, if at all they’ll exist after this week. They simply can’t.
Even before we got to where we are now, bundles mwitu was already not so logical. Figure this: Safaricom had priced the 1.5 GB data bundle at Ksh 1,000. It came with an additional 750 MB night shift data (10pm-10am) valid fr 14 days. Now a bundles mwitu chap sells you just 1 GB of data at Ksh 600 and 1.5 GB at Ksh 800-900. Conventional wisdom dictates that you’ll go with what Safaricom is offering as there’s no good deal in what your mwitu guy is offering you. Unless you just have Ksh 600-900 and can’t raise more. Plus by going the mwitu way you lose out on the customer loyalty programmes/reward schemes like Bonga and Zawadi.
A bundles mwitu poster in Tudor, Mombasa. Look at those rates.
Will bundles mwitu as we know it continue to exist or this is where we say our farewells?
Note: the use of Safaricom’s branding (logo and corporate colours) on the poster is illegal and this article and the site in general do not in any way promote such.