EU telecoms commissioner Viviane Reding has warned mobile executives in Barcelona today that she will impose caps on roaming charges for data and text messaging if they do not cut prices by 1 July. The commissioner, encouraged by her success in slashing voice roaming charges, is at Mobile World Congress to rattle the sabre. She …
Go, go Viviane!
Roaming charges are particularly iniquitous as they we never part of the licence auctions and are in effect freebies for the networks so there is plenty of scope for rebates. It should be noted that a deadline of 1st July 2008 probably means no regulation before October just like last year, ie. many travellers might not benefit before 2009. Any regulation will probably be watered down by the national governments just like the voice charges were. SMS is probably going to be the biggest battleground as even it's very little traffic it's probably what most people use when travelling and most networks doubled the charges for international SMS when they rolled out new voice tarriffs. Data tarriffs are ridiculous but as a result most business travellers use WLAN hotspots. This is a case of the networks shooting themselves in the foot: they get a tiny percentage of the market because the customers are discerning. There are some notable exceptions but tied to particular networks and entirely unsuitable for the occasional traveller.
Finally, Someone Will Balls...
... To take on the mobile operators and get a good deal for us consumers!
This type of action shows you just how sad and pathetic Ofcom are and how they are about as useful as a chocolate fire guard.
Texts when sent from abroad should only be a couple of pence more than the cost of a text sent in the UK! 49p is appalling and has always been a rip off.
She also needs to make sure that texts from the UK dont go up though, 10p should be max for the cost of a text sent if your with a UK network on prepay and less if your on a contract. Companies like tmobile charging you for having delivery reports on should also be abolished as this is a money making scam plain and simple. It costs a UK operator a couple of pence MAX to send a text, yet they charge us 10p, thats one hell of a profit!!
Maybe she also needs to start looking at sorting out these 0845 0870 numbers over here as well as making landline operators only be able to charge a 3p connection charge for calls, as this is creaping up and is now 7p with BT which is disgusting!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I agree, OfCom are a waste of space
They allow blatantly misleading marketing of broadband. They allow rip offs with "national rate" and "local rate" numbers which are nothing like the national and local rate normally charged. They are busy flogging off the TV spectrum having had a "consultation" which is clearly a sham as they'd made their minds up in advance. And they destroyed the LLU market for several years by killing the commercial model it was based on.
What good has OfCom actually achieved ?
The reality is that inter country SMS shouldn't cost any more (or very little more) than inter network SMS. Roaming data shouldn't cost any more (or very little more) than home network data.
Next I guess we'll hear the "but it will mean other costs going up" again like we did with roaming voice charges. If they do then I have just one reply "isn't that an admission of illegal cross subsidy ?"
Everything costs too much
Whaaa! My phone service costs too much! Let's regulate! Why don't we regulate all industries like we do telecom? My UK car costs 25% more than the same car in Belgium. That's wrong! Let's regulate! Boy do I love socialism...
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