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Operators want to cap charges on stolen mobiles

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Operators' joint initiative will protect consumers against high bills for unauthorised calls

Operators’ joint initiative will protect consumers against high bills for unauthorised calls

The UK government in cooperation with major operators announced their initiative to introduce £100 cap in order to safeguard consumers from horrendous bills.

EE, O2, Three, Virgin Mobile and Vodafone are the first major mobile providers that decided to sign a new Code of Practice prepared by Mobile Broadband Group (MBG) and endorsed by the British government. Among many new protection policies in the Code, the most exciting is the introduction of so-called “liability cap” which protects pay monthly customers from being faced with shock bills. The operators established that the cap will be set at £100 so that their customers will not pay more than that if their phone was lost or stolen. The requirement is that customers have to report the incident to the police and their operator within 24 hours.

If you have a PAYG SIM card, you won’t lose much money due to your phone being misused by criminals. In the worst case scenario, you will lose money equal to the value of your phone plus your credit, which probably is never more than 30 quids. Pay monthly customers have much more to lose. National Mobile Phone Crime Unit reports that there are roughly 300,000 mobile phones reported as stolen each year. Some consumers supposedly received bills as high as £23,000 for unauthorised calls made by criminals. Citizen Advice Bureau estimates that in a period of 11 months (from April 2014 to February 2015) thieves were responsible for £140,000 of loss just for the bills on stolen mobile phones.  The new liability cap will give contract customers some peace of mind as they won’t have to worry about the mobile charges that thieves can run up.

Among the members of MBG, only Three UK has introduced such a cap so far. Other operators promised to do so this year. EE said that their cap will be rolled out in the upcoming weeks, Virgin announced it to happen on July 1, Vodafone will follow others this summer, while O2 gave itself a deadline of September 2015.  However, outside the MBG there is one operator that has already thought about the issue.  It is Tesco Mobile which have even lower cap of just £50.

Nevertheless, the official statistics show how big problem stolen mobile phones is. Remember that normally the operator will probably hold you responsible for any charges incurred before informing them and it’s up to them whether they will reduce the bill as a gesture of good will. Even though being robbed of your phone shouldn’t be a likely situation we can see how PAYG SIM cards are superior to PAYM ones in such a case, but thankfully the “liability cap” will protect customers against receiving a shocking bill.

Written by adm

March 26th, 2015 at 5:08 pm

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New countries added to Three’s Feel at Home service

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Will Three attract more customers thanks to no roaming costs in Spain?

Will Three attract more customers thanks to no roaming costs in Spain?

Three UK announced that Spain and New Zealand will be part of Feel at Home programme from April this year which means they will become roaming-free zones for Three’s customers.

Holiday-makers are one of the consumer groups that have been recently pampered by all operators. All main mobile providers have some sort of deal that allows customers use their allowance when going abroad or use preferential rates (in case of PAYG SIM cards users). Customers not only can call, text and browse the Internet at standard rates but they also don’t have to pay for incoming texts and calls. In the beginning this was the result of new roaming regulations introduced by the EU, however, right now mobile operators extend their roaming services to countries all over the world.

One of such programmes is Three’s Feel at Home. Currently it allows contract customers to use their allowance in 16 countries without any additional costs. PAYG SIM card owners can also benefit from Feel at Home, but they need to convert their credit to add-ons in order to do so. The Feel at Home countries encompass 4 continents and include such countries like France, the USA, Israel, Hong Kong, and the Republic of Ireland. Dave Dyson, Three’s CEO, said that Feel at Home is a very popular service and since its launch over a million customers used it. Additionally, countries include in this programme equals roughly 50% of all foreign travels of Three customers.

The addition of Spain and New Zealand to the Feel at Home range before the summer holiday season is great news for consumers. While New Zealand is not the first-choice summer destination, Spain definitely is. The country is one of the most popular spots for Brits as an estimated 13 million people from the UK are expected to spend some time sunbathing in Spain. This is why Dyson predicts that due to the addition of Spain and New Zealand the service will be used by around 70% of all Three customers that go overseas.

Three’s Feel at Home offer is one of the best available on the market as both pay as you go SIM cards and postpaid SIM cards are eligible and most importantly it is offered free of charge. We are going to see more of these kinds of deals from other operators in the near future as roaming fees will have to be phased out by December in accordance with the EU’s vision of Connected Continent.

Written by adm

January 15th, 2015 at 9:16 am

Posted in tariffs&rates

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Irish market consolidates as Three buys out O2 Ireland

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Irish market consolidates as Three buys out O2 Ireland

We hope that big sums scare them off

After long talks Three finally acquired O2’s business in Ireland and became second biggest operator in the country.

Few days ago Three Ireland proudly announced that their acquisition of O2 Ireland has finally been concluded. The £675 million acquisition was on hold until the European Commission approved it. This move made Three Ireland almost the largest mobile provider on the island.

However, the deal didn’t go as smoothly as expected. Irish telecommunications watchdog, ComReg, complained that the buyout will reduce the number of major operators to three and this may reflect on customers as less competition means higher rates. Vodafone, the largest operator in Ireland, also expressed its concerns about additional spectrum that Three will have and comment on the acquisition by saying that it may badly influence competition on the market.

The new joint venture will have 37% of the market share, while the biggest operator, Vodafone, has just three percent more. Right now the plan for Three Ireland is to become market leader and they hope to achieve it soon.

‘We will now get down to the task of combining the strengths and talents of the two businesses to create a major force in the Irish mobile market, which will be good for competition, good for consumers and good for Ireland’ said Three CEO Robert Finnegan.

Written by adm

July 17th, 2014 at 9:40 pm

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Three UK’s Games Store is back

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Three UK’s Games Store is back

Three UK’s Games Store is back

Three UK, in cooperation with LiveWire Mobile, has re-launched its Games Store, making it more up-to-date with current mobile app users and gamers’ needs. The revamped Games Store is integrated with social media and have games in HD quality.

Games Store is back

Moreover, it will support a variety of operating systems.  Three UK’s goal is to provide a platform for all the gamers where they can interact, compete with each other and meet other game enthusiasts. The operator wants to make the Games Store a place of mobile entertainment experiences for all its customers.


Written by adm

September 14th, 2011 at 8:10 pm

Posted in applications

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