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MNP and

MNP and "No Plans" Mobile Future on the Horizon? (Part 1/2)

November, 2001
By Daniel Cheung

It has been a month since 25 September, 2001 - the launch of Mobile Number Portability (MNP).  Amongst all the political finger-pointing between the Telcos, what does MNP really mean for Australian consumers?

In the press, there has been much bickering and political finger-pointing between the three network providers of Australia - Vodafone, Optus and Telstra.  Many mobile numbers so far continue to be left in a limbo state of porting, and many customers are understandably irate - to the point where even the ACCC has had to step in to intervene with the telecommunication giants. 

This, although far from an unexpected outcome in the wake of MNP, does take the focus away from the underlying aim of the introduction of MNP - to foster competition of the Australian mobiles industry.  This in turn should logically mean cheaper rates for mobile customers.  In this month's issue of Buyer's Guide, we focus on what the major Telcos are offering in the near future to grab their share of the market.

No PlansVodafone 

Vodafone has been vigorously promoting its "No Plans" offering on the media since September.  With new No Plans there are no lock-in contracts to tie you down, no minimum monthly spend and no access fees. Vodafone also offer a simple flat call rate of 1 per second to your friends and family within Australia. International calls and special services attract a different rate. You can choose to pay monthly or pre-pay your calls and even use No Plans with your existing mobile phone.  The service can also be cancelled at no cost at any time.  There is however a connection fee of $29.95. 

No Plans is probably a glimpse of the future of the Australian mobile industry - where there will be a shrinkage of the long-term mobile phone plus connection service offerings that has dominated over the past several years.

(Press "Next" button to read Part 2/2)


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