TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: America the Worst For Cell Rates and Plans

Re: America the Worst For Cell Rates and Plans

Earle Robinson (erobins@withheld)
Tue, 1 Feb 2005 01:23:17 +0100

Please mask my email address. Thank you.

> Probably because the U.S. has a better wired infrastructure than
> many parts of Europe.

Sorry, but you are wrong there. Because the European landlines were so
awful they were all rebuilt in the 1970s, so they are mostly better
than in the USA today.

From my little world there isn't anywhere I can't get signal,
including the bowels of the Rhode Island State House behind layers of
brick, marble and steel.

Consider yourself lucky. The complaints from New Yorkers are legion. I also
have found dead areas in and around Miami, too, when I am there.

Steve Sobol wrote:

> You're missing the fact that the USA chose not to standardize on one
> system, and the fact that landlines here have always been MUCH less
> expensive then in Europe.

A landline phone here costs between $11 and $16, net of all
taxes. This means that someone who makes few calls, as the case for
many, their phone service is cheaper. Further, competition here in
Europe is such today that calls are now cheaper than in the USA.
Aside from VOIP, you can find rates to call the USA for about
$0.02-$0.03. I don't think such rates are available for calls to
Europe from the states. Note, too, that the charges are by the second,
too, not by the minute.

Mr. Sobol also wrote:

> What on earth are you talking about -- The callee DOES pay for
> landline calls here. If you have a residential line, you normally
> get flat-rate calling but businesses get metered rates. That's
> metered per call in many places, but here it's per minute. You can
> get metered rates for residential lines too -- if you don't make a
> ton of calls -- and pay a lower monthly rate.

Flat-rate concerns calls made, not those received. You may receive calls
every minute of the day and night with a residential landline phone anywhere
and pay nothing, other than the monthly subscription fee. I think you are
confusing "callee" with caller. If callee paid to receive calls there would
be telephone books and Ma Bell would never have become the huge company it

And, Mr. Sobol wrote this:

> But I can tell you that if we were to adopt the system you speak of,
> we'd probably have run out of area codes long ago and had to add a
> digit to new phone numbers like the UK did.

The American system should have been revised a long time ago. In
Europe it was and so there are plenty of numbers available.

Finally, Mr. Sobol said:

> Not in the US there isn't. You pay the same rate to either.

I recognize this difference. However, as I said, the European system
has meant that market penetration is far higher than in the USA. I
also pointed out that the national regulatory bodies are now leaning
on the cellular carriers to lower those rates. Already they have
dropped by over 30% in France.


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