Mobile costs still need to come down

NZ Herald

I am in the market at the moment for my mobile service. So it is with some interest that I read the Herald on SUnday article about mobile network pricing. Whilst pricing is an issue, coverage is more of a factor as I am sick to death of drop outs…and being connected in order to fulfil my role as NZ’s top bloggers is very important.

The cost of some mobile services is still too high, says a consumer watchdog, despite competition driving down prices.

It was revealed this week that the industry’s newest entrant, 2degrees, has amassed a million customers. Vodafone is still the biggest player, with 2.4 million customers, followed by Telecom.

Venture Consulting found that since the third quarter of 2007, New Zealanders had saved $1.36 billion, about 25 per cent, off their phone bills as a result of increasing competition. Virtually all services have dropped in price.

Between 2008-09 and 2010-11, mobile-to-international calls on average dropped from almost 60c per minute to just over 45c.

Mobile-to-fixed line calls dropped from 35c per minute to just over 20c per minute and off-network calls, those made from one mobile network to another, dropped from just under 50c per minute to less than 40c.

The average price of sending a text has also dropped, from just below 10c from one network to another in 2008-09 to just over 5c in 2010-11.

The price of an on-network text has been stagnant at about 2c and international texts have dropped from an average 23.5c to just under 20c.


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  • NZ Groover

    Mate, if coverage is your key decision criteria, particularly data coverage……then you need to go with Telecom. I can’t think of anywhere I don’t get coverage……hang-on, I couldn’t get coverage in Laingholm once.

    • Callum

      The problem is with Telecom if you go out of coverage it keeps hunting and then bye bye battery. Major issue in my area, at least Vodafone you don’t have to switch your phone off when going in and out range.

      • Sheppy

        I’m on 2 Degrees which falls back to VF once the coverage goes. The data speed slows a lot when going onto VF and when there is no coverage on either the battery flattens very fast.
        Telecom was the fastest for data but I switched to 2 degrees as it’s a lot cheaper and the customer service is way better.
        Telecoms in general are very expensive in NZ and with the demise of Pacific Fibre the incentive to reduce prices has gone.

  • Petal

    Depends on where you live and where you play as to which choice is best. However, for the top of the South Island, say north from a line drawn through Oamaru and Hokitika, Telecom offers superior coverage by far. The only times Vodafone offers coverage when Telecom do not are in two obscure spots: one on the way to Anatori (where?) and at the head of Lake Rotoroa. A mate and I regularly travel for and during downtime and for years he would mock my “XT crap service”. He’s on Telecom now. He’s seen it with his own eyes when I was having coverage when he didn’t. Can’t speak for other areas.

    I’ve suspect that Vodafone et al are quite competitive and perform reasonably well around the main centres and the major satellites. But they truly can not hold a candle to Telecom’s coverage if you are someone who spends a lot of time in places where the roads don’t have lines, reflectors or markers, or spend time in valleys, ridges, huts or tents.

  • andrewo

    How come I’m still paying 20cents for a text in NZ when less than 2-3cents does the job in Singapore and Indonesia?

    • Random66

      If you are on Telecom my teenagers are getting 5000 texts for $12.00 per month.