Thursday, September 11, 2008

Senator Questions Rise In US Texting Prices

Text messaging is a 100 billion dollar industry in the U.S. That's bigger than all the movies, all the music, and all the video games in the entire world put together. The current cost of a single 140 byte text message is 40 cents (which is obfuscated by the fact that the sender AND the receiver are both paying 20 cents each). I can get a letter hand delivered to any doorstep in the U.S. for about the same price. The cost of a text message to the carrier is virtually ZERO. Yet somehow, they are saying that 40 cents is a fair price.

Senator Questions Rise In US Texting Prices
Blogged with the Flock Browser

2 comments:

yogijp said...

A friend tells me that Kaun Banega Crorepathi - asks users to SMS answers. This alone brings in income of 16 crore (???) for the telecom operators. At Rs. 6/sms.

yogijp said...

http://mobile.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=960045&cid=24954669

I can't speak for the US, but here we have premium numbers for texting (usually they'll pay a little extra to get a 4 digit number). What it boils down to is that each SMS they receive (which is usually at 5-10 times the price of a normal SMS), they get approximatly 40% of the revenue and the carrier gets approximatly 60%. I say approximatly here because there are various plans, rates which are far too complex and boring to explain here.

The "Text us DURR to receive a new horoscope/ringtone/anal probe every hour" services, have the ability to send out SMS'es that cost money to the person receiving them. Once the person signed up for the service, they're free to start sending SMS'es whenever they see fit. There have been various customers who've received phonebills reaching into the 5000€ range.