Asda has launched what's claimed to be the UK's cheapest mobile phone - just £5 on a pay-as-you-go deal. And, unlike other low-cost phones, there's no minimum top-up charge.
The phone, which is available on the T-Mobile network, is the Alcatel 1010. As you'd expect for the price, this is a basic feature phone that can't handle the internet or games, but can make and receive calls and texts. It has a 1.45-inch colour screen with keypad, and comes with FM radio and MP3, but just 3Mb memory. It comes in black or two shades of red, and at 59 grams, weighs less than the latest iPhone.
"With purse strings stretched ahead of the festive season and a quarter of mums budgeting more than ever, our customers are always looking for new ways to save money," says Claire McAuley, mobile phone buyer at Asda.
"We've launched the UK's lowest priced phone as a solution to keeping in touch at the lowest cost possible this Christmas and are expecting shoppers of all ages to snap them off the shelves."
Supermarkets and other general retailers are increasingly taking on the better-known device manufacturers with bargain deals of their own. Tesco, for example, launched its own £119 Hudl tablet a few weeks ago, and Argos followed soon after with the £100 MyTablet. For Tesco, though, digital services is a major area of focus, and Asda is not expected to do the same.
Asda says it also expects the phone to sell to cost-conscious elderly people, and it could also be a popular gift for children - indeed, at £5, it costs £4 less than the company charges for the Peppa Pig Flip-Up Phone...