A number of changes take effect in the mobile phone industry today (May 26th), which should benefit UK mobile phone users signing up to a new contract, or seeking to migrate to another operator.
The first change will be a new limit on the maximum length of a mobile phone contract, which will now be set at no more than 24-months (including notice period). In addition to this, every customer (business and consumer) must also be offered the choice of signing up to a contract of no more than 12-months (including notice period).
Number porting, which must be completed within one working day for consumers, will be extended to include business users and companies wishing to port a number of handsets in one go.
Network providers will be expected to pay ‘reasonable compensation’ to customers if the number is not ported within this one working day limit, with Ofcom recommending that at the very least the compensation is the equivalent of one day of line rental for every day the porting has not taken place.
Finally, a trial scheme that allows hearing and speech-impaired phone users to text 999 in an emergency will be extended. Every mobile network will be obliged to allow people to opt-in to this scheme, which offers another way of contacting the emergency services. By default, users will not be able to do this.