Summary:

Cingular has announced a $5 per month surcharge for around 8% of its customers which are still using handsets which use old technologies, ei…

Cingular has announced a $5 per month surcharge for around 8% of its customers which are still using handsets which use old technologies, either analog or TDMA. It will apparently generate $23.5 million a month for Cingular, but the aim is to get those customers onto the newer GSM network so Cingular can phase out the older ones (which it is legally obliged to support until 2008 if it still has customers on them). The effect will be a fairly significant number of people with new handsets which have vastly better capabilities than the ones they have now…and who can suddenly use a whole range of mobile content. People still using those old handsets are unlikely to be a keen market for advanced content, but if the distribution system gets easier they are at least in the customer base.

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