From 6 June 2011, 3 will cheekily add a 1p charge for every SMS delivery report. This is apparently a response to the the recent Ofcom rulings on cross-network call charges. 3 is calling for a drastic reduction, or even scrapping, of the mobile termination charges which are estimated to account for around 10% of mobile networks‘ revenue. These charges are paid by both mobile and fixed-line operators when calls are placed between different networks.
SMS delivery reports are a basic texting feature that is built into most networks. Many people find them necessary for their texting communication especially as messages can go astray or be significantly delayed from time to time. We think it’s pretty outrageous that 3 would charge for such a core feature and especially for every single one. It’s not like it costs them much to provide this service which so many people rely on. What’s worse, they introduced this additional charge without sufficient notice. This means that they broke their own terms and conditions for people on contracts who can’t cancel despite the massive increase in their phone bills.
:3 are trying to claim that other networks block delivery reports but O2 provide them as a manual option and they have always been completely free on Vodafone and most Orange tariffs. We advise all current 3 customers to call them to complain and ask for the new charges to waived on their accounts. Also, a great idea to prevent them getting away with this is to write to the Office of the Telecommunications Ombudsman (OTELO) to complain about 3’s breach of terms.
If you are a 3 customer and this charge is going to detrimentally affect you, you might want to consider switching to a difference network. We’ve got great reviews of the best ones. Don’t worry, you can still keep your phone number and there are tons of cheaper mobile networks out there.