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Tuesday, 03 December 2013 12:20

Four mobile operators decide to be nice to customers

Written by Nick Farrell



Shocking really

Four of the UK’s largest mobile phone operators have agreed to stop enforcing mid-contract price hikes and to cap bills from stolen or lost phones. For ages now, mobile phone operators have been treating customers like hole in the wall machines and attempted to screw cash out of them. But it seems that they have run up against a British government which is about as popular as Jack the Ripper and desperate to convince voters that it really has their interests at heart.

Government representatives have apparently had a word to the biggest phone companies and asked them very nicely to be a bit kinder to customers. Asking nicely is a prelude to legislation if the companies do not toe the line. The British government looks like it will have to pull out all stops as the cost of living shapes up as the top issue before an election in 2015. The government said on Monday it would cut some green levies paid by energy companies so they could cut prices by a huge £12.

EE, Vodafone, Three and Virgin Media said they would allow customers to break contracts without penalty if their tariffs were raised mid-contract. O2, with about 23 million subscribers, said it was still in talks with Britain's government about the proposals. It was not clear when the proposals on mobile phone charges - among some of the lowest in Europe - would be introduced, but the government said it was aiming for the liability cap to be in place from spring next year.

Fixed-line providers BT, Sky and TalkTalk had also pledged to support European Commission-led plans to eliminate roaming charges within Europe by 2016.

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