Europe to adopt measures to reduce ‘bill shock’

What Mobile
March 2, 2009

MEPs have backed a report authored by Conservative MEP Syed Kamall to have clearer information produced about the cost of using a mobile phone abroad for downloading data and sending SMS.

While the parliament is currently considering price capping within the EU for data and text messages (in addition to capping that already exists on voice calls), the report calls for network operators to send a text message to users when a user crosses into another EU country, stating clearly what the cost of using data and texting will be. In addition, a cut-off limit will be set, meaning another message will be sent if the spending exceeds that limit.

Mr Kamall has said that he does not believe a price cap is the best option for reducing roaming costs, but increased transparency will end the ‘bill shock’ consumers face when returning home. He said: “We often hear stories of people who unwittingly download videos on their mobile phone whilst abroad, only to return to a bill of several thousand pounds. These proposals will put an end to ‘bill shock’ by providing users with clearer information.

“When abroad, users will be able to set a limit on how much they spend on downloads, and they will be prompted before they can go above this limit.

“Consumers need clearer information about how much they are spending when abroad to prevent the nasty surprises too many have received when they open their bills.”


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