When o2 gets finally acquired by 3 then Giffgaff won' be able to compete with 4G unlimited data at no cost(at normal speeds)+150MB of free allowance and much lower pay as you go rates 3 currently offering. So it could be the end or their profits will be considerably declining. Payback won't hold the customers. Just a thought
What has to be remembered is that any changes will not happen overnight.
Merging the "front deck" and "sales" is one thing, but switching everyone to the 3 phone network is not going to happen in an instant.
Just imagine what would happen to the 3 data bandwidth if all O2 customers were suddenly given access to it - you may think giffgaff speeds are bad now......
All those O2 masts and transmitters will still be in the same places, still carrying the O2 customers calls and data.
They will not magically be upgraded to carry the same technology as the newer 3 masts.
Because O2 has a larger area coverage, what is likely to happen is that 3 customers will be given access O2 masts.
Then later O2 customers will be able to use 3 masts in locations where the 3 signal is stronger than that of O2.
It will take time and a lot of money to make the present 3 technology universally available, and remember 3 have just spent a large amount of money just to buy the O2 network (if the deal goes through).
Further investment will not be high on the agenda as they will need to see some return on that initial investment used to buy O2.
So.... relax, don't panic, no one knows what 3's plans are.
They will have a large market share and they will decide how to target different market sectors, just as O2 did when giffgaff was launched.
There will be different packages available to suit different user requirements.
We will just have to wait and see what the future will hold, no amount of speculation here will make any difference to the final outcome.
@bill48er said "Because O2 has a larger area coverage, what is likely to happen is that 3 customers will be given access O2 masts."
Three claims to already cover 98% UK population coverage with at least HSPA+ (3G) what % does O2 cover ?
Also Three has just launched VoLTE to allow voice over 4G on its 800MHz 4G spectrum to reach deeper and further than before.
I agree changes to the physical network will take time but closing a virtual brand and/or "inviting" cough its customers to use a new offering can be done pretty quickly.