August 22, 2007

AT&T Mobility to Charge For Detailed Paper Bills

Greetings. The spin on this story, is that long iPhone bills are speeding AT&T Mobility's reportedly already planned moves to charge for other than summary paper bills.

The details (no pun intended) aren't all completely clear, but this does make sense at least for the data portion of the bills, for people with flat rate data plans. Currently the bills show each EDGE/3G connection, and that really can pile up.

However, any move to charge for detailed billing on non-flat data plans, or for the detail on the voice call component of the bills (since most of us don't have flat rate voice plans) should be considered problematic. This same concern would seem to also apply to conventional landline phone service bills with flat vs. non-flat rate calling plans as well.

On non-flat rate plans, call or data detail can be important to understand and plan your usage characteristics. While I agree that for many people online access to this detail information (which I assume AT&T intends to continue providing for free) provides a useful alternative to paper bill details. However, there are many persons who are wireless or landline phone users who are not comfortable on the Web (or even don't use the Web at all).

I suggest that it would be unfair to that set of users to charge them a premium for a detailed paper bill, at least in terms of non-flat rate components.


Posted by Lauren at August 22, 2007 08:24 PM | Permalink
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