French agree on low-income mobile call plan
The French government and major mobile operators signed Monday an agreement to introduce service plans affordable to low-income customers that would shave around 20 percent off call charges.
The plans should offer at least 40 minutes of call time plus 40 text messages per month for no more than 10 euros ($14), according to the ministry of industry.
The price of the plans, which should be introduced within six months, was set in order to be affordable to those receiving social benefits, and would include warnings before additional fees are incurred.
In France most customers purchase a mobile phone subsidised by the operator and get locked into service long contracts. Even without a subsidised mobile, unrestricted prepaid calling plans have remained relatively expensive.
Direct comparisons are difficult, but the new service plan would offer savings of around 20 percent on per-minute call charges, if taking into account a similar 0.10 euro charge per text message.
© 2011 AFP