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Thursday, 21 June 2012 12:01

Telcos still ripping off customers

Written by Nick Farrell



EU moans about Global Roaming


Neelie Kroes, European Commission Vice President for the Digital Agenda team said that consumers are still paying too much for roaming services.

She said that Mobile Internet has been growing rapidly amongst consumers and businesses in Europe with 217 million mobile broadband subscriptions. But she was concerned that Telcos are continuing to rip off consumers with high mobile roaming prices. She said that consumers are paying three and a half times as much for roaming calls as they do for national calls.

Earlier this year the EU bought in new roaming regulation to extend price caps to data and introduce new competition. Kroes claimed the new solution would be long lasting. The release of the figures is to justify the new laws now that they are in place.

These new rules will see virtual mobile network operators will immediately have the right to access other operators' networks at regulated wholesale prices in order to provide roaming services to their customers. From 2014, when consumer's travel outside the EU, they will also get a warning if their data bills go over £50.

Ofcom is also supporting EU Roaming Regulator's group BEREC's proposal to extend the measure of a cut off limit, once a consumer's mobile internet bill reaches £42 within the European Union, to worldwide capability. Ofcom is advising UK mobile providers to introduce worldwide financial caps and alerts on data usage in the mean time.

Nick Farrell

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