Mobile phone users to pay more as call tariffs increase
Posted Thursday, October 10 2013 at 01:00
Subscribers using the ‘per minute’ billing plan will pay Shs270 from Shs240.
Mobile phone subscribers are set to pay more for a phone call after some telecoms announced an increase in voice call rates.
MTN, Uganda’s biggest telecommunication company by subscribers, yesterday announced in a media notice an increase in voice call rates, with the new rates starting today. The firm, for instance, increased the call rate for subscribers using the per minute billing plan from Shs240 to Shs270 per minute calling other networks, while the rate within the network remained unchanged at Shs240.
The rate for subscribers using the per second billing plan went up from Shs4 (Shs240) to Shs4.5 per second. Calling subscribers on other networks using the ‘per second’ billing plan will cost Shs5 per second, up (Shs300 per minute) from Shs4 (Shs240 per minute).
The increase comes a few months after Warid Telecom – which ventured into Uganda with a promise of offering affordable telecom services that saw it ignite the 2010 price war – merged with Airtel.
The price war saw Ugandans enjoy low call tariffs of Shs180 per minute within and off-network across the industry from an average Shs300.
Telecoms, however, increased the rates to Shs240 per minute across all networks in late 2011 from Shs180, citing the increased cost of doing business that resulted from the challenging economic environment that the country experienced in 2011.
The new rates are currently the most expensive on the market, as other players still charge Shs240 per minute across all networks. The reasons that inform the latest increment are still unclear, as this newspaper was unable to get a comment from any of the telecom companies including MTN, Airtel and Orange because calls were neither answered nor returned.