O2 reveals roaming data cuts but rivals keep quiet
By Stewart Mitchell
Mobile networks appear to have a long way to go to get up to speed on data roaming price restrictions imposed by the European Parliament.
As expected after being outlined in March, European officials yesterday imposed a €0.70/MB limit on internet usage in non-home European countries after growing frustrated by high prices and widespread bill shock.
O2 was apparently first to react to the decision, launching a new roaming bundle – O2 Travel – that the company says gives pay monthly users 25MB of data for £2 a day when abroad, with users able to buy the bolt-on again if they pass the 25MB cap.
The company said the announcement of the travel package today was purely coincidental and initially said it didn't need to change its data tariffs or prices because they were already in line with EU requirements.
Recently we introduced smartphone prices which allow customers to pay a fixed daily fee and not to worry about unexpected charges
However, the company's website is still quoting £3/MB for PAYG customers, some five times the EU regulation price - but said it had new prices lined up to come into effect on 1 July. The prices offered for calls, texts and data matched exactly with the maximum prices acceptable under the new laws.
At least O2 has laid out its pricing plans – Vodafone and Orange both said they couldn't discuss how they would change prices, while we are still waiting to hear back from Three.
Vodafone cited existing packages such as its £2/day 25MB Data Traveller package, but couldn't say how it would bring all pricing into line with the regulations, with its basic tariffs still at £1/MB.
“Vodafone has led the industry in offering roaming services that are innovative and affordable, whatever the regulatory environment," the company said in a statement.
"Recently we introduced smartphone prices which allow customers to pay a fixed daily fee and not to worry about unexpected charges.“
[Source : PC Pro]