Americans and Canadians have the most expensive phone bills in the world [No surprise, really]

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In a study published by the New America Foundation, they found that the cheapest mobile phone bill for Americans hovers around $60, and Canadians get it even worse at $67. India and Hong Kong on the other hand are on the other side of the spectrum with their bills going as low as $12.90 and $13.50 respectively. Now if you’re thinking to yourself that this story sounds familiar, you’re absolutely right. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development had similar results when they published their findings in August 2009. Nice to see that things haven’t changed.

By the end of this week you’re going to hear AT&T and Verizon defend their pricing, say how America is the leader in mobile innovation, and that the numbers are totally unfair due to factors that they can’t explain, and blah blah blah. Here’s the lowdown. In pretty much every country except America, people don’t pay for receiving calls, texts, even multimedia messages. You, as a consumer, shouldn’t have to pay for someone sending you something. It would be like the post office not delivering your mail because you don’t pay to receive letters. Only your mother has to pay for the stamp on your birthday card, you don’t have to spend a single penny.

Data is also tricky. In most other countries it’s cheaper because operators have been preparing for this day to come for a long time. Making money on voice has always been a challenge, then text messages came out of nowhere and became an instant hit, but brutal price wars made them practically free. The mobile internet, or rather the internet on your mobile, is the hot new source of income that’s going to be shoved back into the network to support even more data usage, thus completing the circle of operator OPEX vs. CAPX in simple economic terms.

[Via: Ars.Technica]

  • Guest

    Thank you!!! Incoming should be free!!! Why should I have to pay for someone wanting to talk to me! In this case both parties pay for the call which doesn’t make any sense. My bill last month was so high because of this. I don’t know why this is acceptable in this country…

  • Blue

    I’m suprised – and shocked. I had no idea the receiver paid for calls in the US. I’m from Australia and UK. Such a thing is illegal in those countries and rightly so. Incredible – and unethical. But I guess that’s the US Congress for you – anything to support big business.

  • Blue

    I’m suprised – and shocked. I had no idea the receiver paid for calls in the US. I’m from Australia and UK. Such a thing is illegal in those countries and rightly so. Incredible – and unethical. But I guess that’s the US Congress for you – anything to support big business.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_2SQQCAN7ZQ4PGUKAY7NIMEWDUU cyberstoic

    In America, the sender and receiver each pay for their airtime. In other countries, the incoming call to you is not FREE, it is paid for by the sender, the one who initiated the call. The comparisons they are making here are not apples to oranges because of that. It also explains why Americans use their cell phones more, because it is less expensive to actually USE your phone. My cousin in Italy would make me laugh, because he would never want to call using his cell because the calls were so expensive.

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