Advice for calling US Mobile Phone?

Discussion in 'VOIP' started by Mark, May 22, 2005.

  1. Mark

    Osmo R Guest

    Itr sure is not irrelevant. The price comparisons should of course be
    based on the real use of phones, not some imaginary use. If people
    seldom do call mobiles from landlines then I do not see how that should
    be included in the comparison.

    I acknowledge that there is a problem in that pricing affects behavior
    (and behavior affects pricing) but that's just something one cannot
    avoid. For that reason it is very hard to compare fixed prices and per
    minute/per call prices as the behavior in different in those.
    The problem with this is that by choosing the pattern one can choose the
    result. The idea of taking costs to all parties into question is just
    meaningless. I do not care what it costs to other parties (within
    reasonable limits). I optimize my behavior, let the callers do that for
    Osmo R, Jun 1, 2005
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  2. I'd bother doing so if I thought that most mobile users were using their
    phone between 0700 and 2000 and using a 1,000 minutes a month.
    chancellor of the duchy of besses o' th' barn and , Jun 1, 2005
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  3. Indeed, but it's still the case that that kind of consumer will be
    calling mobiles and not worrying about the cost as much as someone on,
    say, a PAYG plan calling cross network.
    It's highly likely that if Orange dump the plan I'm currently on, I may
    very well just go on to PAYG. I'm considering it with my partner's
    account. The whole reason I got onto contract in the first place was
    because it offered lower roaming costs. Now, you have companies which
    offer far better deals (Riiing), or similar costs on PAYG (thinking
    Easymobile for example) and it seems less attractive.
    chancellor of the duchy of besses o' th' barn and , Jun 1, 2005
  4. Mark

    Ivor Jones Guest

    "chancellor of the duchy of besses o' th' barn and prestwich tesco"
    I struggle to use 120 minutes a month..!

    Ivor Jones, Jun 1, 2005
  5. Mark

    Ivor Jones Guest

    "chancellor of the duchy of besses o' th' barn and prestwich tesco"

    You're entirely correct. One of the main reasons I hang on to my contract
    is it's the only way of having Line 2. I need this as I don't want to give
    my main number to work.

    Ivor Jones, Jun 1, 2005
  6. I use about 100 peak minutes a month, so my 300 minutes per month plan is a
    bit wasteful, but it's the smallest plan I could get. It's around $32/month.

    But where most people really rack up the minutes is nights and weekends, and
    on-network mobile-mobile. It would normally cost $0.06/minute to make a
    landline call from my house in Silicon Valley, to San Francisco, a mere 40
    miles away. My wife's family all lives up there, and we were paying about
    $20 per month in "local long-distance." Similarly, calling anywhere in the
    U.S. will cost about $0.025/minute on the least expensive long distance
    calling card, and we probably use another couple of hundred minutes on the
    mobile phone, that would otherwise cost another $5. Since Verizon has a very
    high market share in my area (GSM coverage is very poor in my area), nearly
    every friend, relative, or colleague has Verizon service, and you can rack
    up another couple of hundred free peak minutes that way.

    It doesn't really matter how you slice it, CPP always results in higher
    per-minute rates, the question is whether it's 1.3x, 1.5x, 2x, or 3x.
    Steven M. Scharf, Jun 1, 2005
  7. Because if the termination charges were not so high, they would not be
    intentionally avoiding making certain calls. I wanted people to look at the
    big picture, and not just look at how the wireless carriers have conditioned
    them to behave.
    That is what the carriers want. They can successfully hide the true cost,
    when people think only about themselves.
    Steven M. Scharf, Jun 1, 2005
  8. It depends on the laws in each country, and if collusion is legal or not. In
    a free market, the total cost per call would fall dramatically with mobile
    party pays, because the cost becomes transparent (in the UK sense of the

    All studies on the issue of CPP/RPP/MPP show that the cost falls with MPP.
    Steven M. Scharf, Jun 1, 2005
  9. Mark

    Osmo R Guest

    I would never consider using so much for a mobile phone. So what's
    cheap and what's expensive is relative. Since early 2003 I have used on
    the average two euros a month for phone bills. Average use of airtime
    has been 144 minutes a month. (counted from the phone logs).

    Osmo R, Jun 1, 2005
  10. "chancellor of the duchy of besses o' th' barn and prestwich tesco"
    The competive environment is about the same between the U.S. and U.K., with
    four major carriers. The prices are largely set by the premier carrier,
    Verizon, with the other three carriers trying to offer better deals in
    terms of included minutes, or features such as rollover minutes (Cingular),
    automatic tier pricing (Sprint), or huge numbers of included minutes

    What makes the MPP (Mobile Party Pays) more competitive is that the prices
    are transparent. All the studies of European pricing conclude this.

    "The crucial issue from the point of competition policy (as Oftel the UK
    regulator emphasises) is that there are no market forces working to bring
    the termination charge (around 20p) down. This is because the person
    receiving the call does not pay for it even though he or she chooses the
    network that levies the termination charge."

    There have been studies in the U.S., as carriers wanted to provide a caller
    pays option, but without any FCC regulation on termination charges. The FCC
    was willing to allow caller pays, but only if it could regulate the
    termination charges. So the whole thing went nowhere.

    You've already seen that the UK wireless carriers will charge excessive
    termination charges in the abscence of government regulation, and even now
    these charges remain very high.

    Here are some more papers on the issue: CTU settlement TSTT.ppt (see page 22) Aug, FMI.PPT (see page

    The conclusion is always the same. Caller pays causes a failure in market
    pricing. Just because you choose not to see it, does not change the reality
    that it is happening.
    Steven M. Scharf, Jun 1, 2005
  11. Mark

    Osmo R Guest

    And I still do not see why the cost of calling a mobile from a a
    landline is relevant when one can call with a mobile.
    So? I do not care of the carriers. I care what it costs to me.

    Osmo R, Jun 1, 2005
  12. "chancellor of the duchy of besses o' th' barn and prestwich tesco"
    Some GSM carriers in some areas of the U.S. are very capacity constrained,
    and try to encourage less peak use, and more off-peak use. The business
    customers that are paying for thousands of peak minutes per month, do not
    want dropped calls, or "system busy, please try later" messages.
    Steven M. Scharf, Jun 1, 2005
  13. Mark

    Osmo R Guest

    Here the law prevents bundling phones with connections and long
    contracts (in the latter I am not sure though if it is really law).
    People here are free to switch whenever they wish keeping the number. As
    the result the cost of call to foreign network is well below the
    termination fee, sometimes it is almost half of it. Also the termination
    fees have dropped significantly from around 13 c/min to 6.8-10 c/min.

    Osmo R, Jun 1, 2005
  14. I divided the 1000 minutes that way because it represents the non-business
    use of a typical user in the U.S.. There certainly are many, many business
    people that use 1000 peak minutes (salespeople, real estate agents, etc.)
    but they are not the majority.

    It really doesn't matter how you slice it, or how many minutes you use in a
    scenario, as long as you make it a fair comparison by not claiming something
    like "well, I make only outgoing calls to landlines, and no one calls me due
    to the termination charges." The second scenario I did, showed a much
    smaller difference, when you look only at peak minutes, but this is not the
    typical use of a mobile phone.
    Steven M. Scharf, Jun 1, 2005
  15. California originally prohibited linking the handset price with a contract,
    but eliminated this restriction more than ten years ago.
    This is the key problem with CPP, and every study on the subject has reached
    the same conclusion. The termination fees are significantly raising the
    price per call, because the termination fee becomes the major part of the
    cost of wireless service.
    to 6.8-10 c/min.

    Still very high. The regulators should limit termination fees to the same
    level as what a carrier charges to call a landline or mobile, at the same
    day and time.
    Steven M. Scharf, Jun 1, 2005
  16. Mark

    Osmo R Guest

    Here removing the man is considered on 3G phones. The removing should be
    temporary. So many temporary decisions end up being permanent so I am
    not that keen on seeing it lifted. The problem with 3G is not the cost
    of the handsets but operators not giving good enough plans. They give
    the same as with GSM so why bother.

    I have no interest in paying for anyone's handset in my phone bills.
    And just how many of those studies have studied the situation in Finland?
    I agree they should be limited. I am not exactly sure of the powers the
    regulators have but in general they prefer negotiations instead of
    dictating the prices. However, the termination fee is not that much an
    issue as the calls already cost less. The fact that we have a separation
    between service and network operators confuses the issue even though all
    the three network operators have their own service operator.

    Osmo R, Jun 2, 2005
  17. Mark

    Steve Sobol Guest


    Probably none. Why do you insist things must be the same in other countries
    as in Finland? Give it a rest. The market is COMPLETELY different there than
    it is here in the US. That much is not going to change unless Finland
    suddenly acquires tons of land and grows to a population of 250 or 300
    million people and suddenly ALSO acquires the political structure the
    telecomm industry has here.

    In other words, find something else to whine about.

    -- - Apple Valley, CA - - 888.480.4NET (4638)
    Steven J. Sobol, Geek In Charge / / PGP: 0xE3AE35ED

    "The wisdom of a fool won't set you free"
    --New Order, "Bizarre Love Triangle"
    Steve Sobol, Jun 2, 2005
  18. Mark

    Osmo R Guest

    I am not. Thiose who say that CPP always leads to higher prices are.

    Osmo R, Jun 2, 2005
  19. Mark

    Ivor Jones Guest

    That's because they're right.

    Ivor Jones, Jun 2, 2005
  20. Sure, but it's not just the GSM carriers which have these peak
    restrictions. All the major companies appear to encourage more off-peak
    chancellor of the duchy of besses o' th' barn and , Jun 2, 2005
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