ROAMING SURVEY REVEALS PRICING STILL COMPLEX AND EXPENSIVE
London, 19th March 2007 - The first ever roaming tracking service from BroadGroup Tariff Services (www.mobilepricing.com) based on a survey of operators worldwide, suggests that current roaming prices remain complex and expensive. Although roaming charges have moved considerably, particularly in the EU following pressure from the European Commission, the new service, Roaming Global Tariff Tracker, highlights that tariffing structures used in voice and data pricing remains complex and ultimately expensive for the user. Findings based on an analysis of current tariffing reveal that of the 47 operators surveyed operators, only 5 do not use zones in roaming prices, whereas the remainder have adopted tariff structures with zones which vary from between 3 and 8. However, the gap between calling home from a neighbouring country and the most expensive rate is wide, with the most expensive rate being 12 times (i.e. €5.37 per 1 minute) that of the rate calling from a near-by country. Data roaming prices vary significantly across the surveyed countries, with some operators adopting a flat rate price irrespective of the country in which the roamer is travelling, whereas the remainder have adopted the zoned approach. The average 1 Mbyte charge of the surveyed operators is €10, with the lowest charged at €2.5 and the highest at €44 per 1 Mbyte. 'During the period of undertaking this research, operators have dropped prices, new bundles have been introduced and innovative pricing schemes such as 'home pricing' have been announced,' commented Margrit Sessions, managing director of BroadGroup Tariff Services. 'Yet complexity in pricing is a defensive strategy, and the research suggests that as operators build in these tariffs, a new breed of competitor is emerging to exploit the margin opportunities in this market.' The new service is designed to enable operators to keep abreast with the latest pricing innovations in roaming.