Hong Kong dwellers have staged a mini-protest outside one of the stores of SmarTone against the cellco's response to new rules from the local regulator which will force all network operators to scrap unlimited data tariffs. Local newspaper The Standard reported that the group of angry customers gathered outside a SmarTone store …
"SmarTone is going "too far" by cutting its unlimited package down to 2MB per month."
That would be too far... should be 2 GB I'm guessing.
From a Hong Kong dweller
Yes it is, and btw, SmarTone is no longer Vodafone's partner
>The new data allowance of 2GB is generous
Thanks for the catch - have sorted.
What is so glorious about Mong Kok?
It's just a translitertion of 'busy corner' in the local dialect.
You see in our local dialect, by which I mean vulgar English, "Kok" sounds very much like "cock" which is a colloquialism for the male member. "Mong" also has various vernacular meanings, most of which are slightly offensive and therefore humorous. This double helping of argot deserves, in the view of the author, the adjective "glorious".
I think the El Reg sub-head on this story is, oh, every so slightly misleading.
The story isn't that unlimited data tariffs are being banned, it's that the regulator is forcing carriers who claim to offer unlimited data tariffs to actually deliver on their headline promises.
If only OFCOM/ASA would follow the Hong Kong regulator's shining example.
My thoughts exactly, their regulator has made it law that new unlimited tariffs can't have a limit or fair usage policy applied to them.
sounds like their regulators actually have some teeth
"the regulator is forcing carriers who claim to offer unlimited data tariffs to actually deliver on their headline promises"
It's giving them the option of ceasing to claim to offer unlimited data tariffs, so it would have been fairly obvious what would end up happening.
Ideally, several unimaginative gentlemen (with unmarked prisoner transport vans sitting in the car park) from one of the scarier government organisations would be employed to sit in the offices of these companies and make disapproving noises whenever data transfer rates for any user diverge significantly from the advertised "up to"s.
Which is better. Being told what the cap is before charges/cut offs or being cut off for exceeding a glass ceiling?
Hurrah for a regulator that knows the meaning of the word "unlimited".
While I agree with you that the current unlimited nonsense is annoying, if the UK regulator stepped in and said "you cannot have 'unlimited' with a fair use policy", we would quickly lose all unlimited deals altogether, with something like 10GB packages being standard. I think, under the circumstances, I would like to have an unknown ceiling somewhere very high to a known ceiling I can hit when I jump.
Sounds like legislation we need in the UK
“Service providers offering unlimited plans without qualifications must ensure that their networks are equipped with sufficient capacity so that they are truly capable of providing unlimited services to the relevant customers,” said an OFTA spokesperson.
It's about time that operators of communications networks (both fixed and mobile) were stopped from selling this 'unlimited' nonsense when there is a limit, be it in the small print, or in the network capacity. Tell us what we can have, and charge us accordingly for what we get. How hard is it? That, or take all the marketeers responsible for this deceptive crap out the back and shoot them.
This seems like a good thing
The regulator simply appears to be making companies come clean on their rate plans. It is either unlimited, or 2GB, but pretty hard to be both at the same time. So... which is it?
I guess an operator could claim unlimited, and then bracket it down with a bunch of restrictions, no VoIP, or no IM, or no video streaming, but then that's what the fine print is for already, no?
What a dose of sanity.
It's actually a mis-transliteration of 'busy corner' in the local dialect. The real transliteration is "Wong Kok" - actually "Wong Gok" would be more accurate - anyway, legend has it the that person responsible for putting up the sign with the road name hung the W upside down hence Mong Kok. In a similar vein there's a road in Hong Kong called "Rednaxela Terrace", which again legend has it that the person responsible for putting up the sign inadvertently reversed the order of the letters.
It's misleading to suggest that there is a transliteration "standard", there's a bunch of competing schemes, plus whatever someone made up on the spot. Rather like browser standards. Hung Hom always sounds like it's pronounced in the wrong order to me.