Optus Quietly Puts Caps On Bill Shock

Optus customers who go over their "cap" limits will only be charged up to a certain pre-set point, which is a major victory over bill shock. Optus, though, has implemented this in a very quiet fashion.

ZDNet reports on the move which Optus actually put in place last year without informing customers. According to the report, Optus CEO Kevin Russell announced at an Australia-Israel Chamber of Commerce lunch in Melbourne last Thursday that customers who go over their domestic caps by more than $200 are only charged the $200 limit, while those who exceed global roaming limits wouldn't be penalised any more than $500. He did note that since undertaking those measures, Optus had seen a dip in revenues, but that it was worth it in terms of customer loyalty.

"As an industry, we have become increasingly reliant on non-core revenues; revenues that come from breakage fees. I don't believe you can move forward unless you address those decisions head on. And if you have unsustainable revenues that are upsetting your customer loyalty, then I think you have to address it head on."

It's an interesting step for a mobile carrier to take; while the $200 and $500 fees aren't exactly chicken feed, they pale next to some of the roaming horror stories that have emerged over recent years.

Naturally, you'll still be better off keeping within your caps, and for that you should check out our guide to the Top 10 ways To avoid global roaming rorts.

Optus seeks bill shock breaker [ZDNet]


Comments

    Well, this decision makes sense, if Optus wants to avoid showing up in paper headlines (Optus customer being charged $2500 for exceeding cap). It does arguably not make much sense, if their goal is to avoid being "increasingly reliant on non-core revenues; revenues that come from breakage fees.", because the vast majority of people is likely to be staying within those limits, esp the $200 domestic one.
    To be fair, Optus now offers a quick recharge, once approaching the limit, a moderate data package at a pretty decent (considering the circumstances) price. Nevertheless, the way the system is set up, there will still be plenty of people experiencing this issue, and plenty of extra revenue for Optus.

    wait so it was worth the dip in revenue because it makes the customers happy, but they didnt tell the customers...

    I think they realised that any customer they hit with a $2000 monthly bill would be one less customer they had. Also I'd bet the majority of those bills end up being contested, have to go through debt collection agencies etc, all of which takes chunks out of the money that ends up in Optus's pocket. Losing a customer is pretty expensive, so technically this isn't to make existing customers happier more than it's meant to reduce the likelyhood of pissing them off :P

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