I haven’t been a fulltime blogger (or even a part timer) for the past three years and despite this time I cannot understand how nothing has changed. I feel like a broken record complaining about the high cost of cellular providers and how obtuse the bills are. We all know the stats show that SA networks are ripping us off. Since I’m vastly more mature and constructive I can now offer some productive feedback!
The solution is simple, all you need to do is look overseas to the US of A. You take a fixed fee for a phone and then add a calling plan. For example an iPhone costs you $200 and you can choose between a 450 minute, 900 minute and unlimited call minute option. Tack on a $30 data plan and you can pretty much be assured what you’ll be paying every month.
This makes sense both from the consumer and the networks perspective. From a consumer you know exactly how much you’ll be spending monthly (assuming you don’t go over the generous minutes) so no nasty surprises or worries. From a networks perspective they can easily work out demand and can forecast returns. It’s quite simple, you have a thousand clients paying you one rand a month you know to expect a thousand rand a month. All you need to do is keep your costs below that amount. Any extra overages by your clients is money for jam. Currently as a client you get a fixed fee for a puny amount of minutes so you can almost be assured of going over the initial amount resulting in a highly variable monthly cost. As a network knowing a user might pay anywhere between a hundred and a thousand rand can make forecasting quite vague. Best of all with fixed fees you’ll cut your marketing budget because all you need to do is make sure your contracts are cheaper than the competition so no more Meerkat!
The sneakiest part of this: by providing large jumps in free minutes for proportionally lower costs you’ll lock users into buying higher cost contracts even though they’ll probably never use those minutes. Don’t worry cellular networks: you’ll still be able to sit on your piles of cash till the end of time.
It’s simple guys, make it happen.