In article <firstname.lastname@example.org>, email@example.com
> I'm still amazed that, in the US, the person being called on a mobile
> phone has to pay for the call if someone calls or texts them. I'm on
> Virgin Mobile here in the UK and, thankfully, we only pay for outgoing
> calls and texts, as is the case on all of our other mobile phone
> networks, such as 3, Vodafone, Orange etc ...
> If someone were to call a mobile phone from a landline in the US, I
> presume that they also pay for the call, right? So, is the cost of
> the call split between the caller and the the person being called?
Rob, in the US it costs the same to call from landline to mobile as it
does to call from landline to landline. In many parts of the country,
local calls are flat-rate (i.e., no per-call or per-minute charge).
The mobile user pays for airtime on incoming calls as well as
outgoing, but most users pay a per-month usage charge that includes a
"bucket" of daytime minutes and a larger bucket of night/weekend
minutes. For example, one might pay $30 for 400 daytime minutes and
2000 night/weekend minutes. If you pick the right size bucket plan,
you don't ever pay per minute for airtime. Most carriers do not
charge anything extra for making calls throughout a fairly large local
calling area, and there are plans that do not charge extra for
domestic long-distance calls.
For text messaging, my carrier (Verizon Wireless) charges 2 cents per
message received and 10 cents per message sent. They also offer
"buckets" of texts for a flat rate. I think it costs USD 4 or so for
several hundred texts.
Anyone who runs up a bill for hundreds of dollars for texting in a
given month has a serious problem. At the standard rate, it would
cost $60 for 1000 messages (500 sent, 500 received). That same number
of messages could be covered by a bucket plan for ten dollars or so.
To spend a hundred dollars a month on texting, one would have to send
or receive about fifty texts a day. Maybe the kid in the story was
using text (SMS) for IM.
Michael D. Sullivan
Bethesda, MD, USA
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