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Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Orange "flat"rate looks a bit mountainous to me

David Meyer at ZDnet has some interesting comments on Orange UK shooting itself in the foot with a supposed "flatrate" tariff at £8 / month which it's capped at 30MB. Which is the same cap that T-Mobile offered about 15 months ago on Web'n'Walk - mostly over 2G devices at the time - for a broadly comparable price.

Funny, I could have sworn the intervening period has had several HSDPA launches, and much faster ramp-up of WCDMA, which vastly reduce the cost-per-MB to deliver Internet access.

30MB is fine for email & some very limited WAP & HTML browsing. I know, as I've got that pre-flatrate Web'n'Walk tariff and 2G device I use for that purpose. But it's not useful for any decent usage of a decent browser on a decent phone with a decent connection - I got hit with substantial over-use charges when I swapped the SIM into a 3G Nokia with a good browser for a month.

I hate to think what the roaming charges are.


Sami said...

It's an unfortunate fact that flat-rates aren't really flat-rates. The 30MB from Orange is borderline funny, but I've seen even worse. It seems that operators have understood that flat-rate is a Good Thing (tm), but instead of implementing it properly they're calling all their plans flat-rate. Which, of course, is a nice way of getting some annoyed users.

But another question is what would you consider "real" flat-rate? Is it 1GB per month that many (most) operators consider the limit of fair usage? How about 512MB/month? Or 2GB?

And as for the roaming charges... you don't want to know.

Nikolaj M. said...

Hm, something similar exists with wired lines also. Comcast here in the US offers a triple-feature, and unlimited iternet access is one of them. However, a co-worker told me one interesting thing. He was blocked by Comcast once, and it took him a while to figure out why. the reason was, as the people at the service explained after long investigation, he got into 3% group of so called very heavy internet users, that use a lot of traffic and probalby slow the network in their area. the limit is around 200G a month, then you are banned out. Although the service is called unlimited.