Shock mobile price hikes investigated

The City Press has reported that the National Consumer Commission and Icasa will meet this week to discuss the “shock increases in cellphone tariffs”.

On 26 March 2015 Vodacom announced that from 1 May 2015 it will increase the subscription fees on selected contract price plans, which will affect voice and data customers.

The new prices will apply to Vodacom Smart, uChoose Smart, uChoose Flexi, Top Up, and Mobile Broadband packages.

The price changes are applicable to existing Vodacom customers on these price plans as well as new customers.

Cell C announced in December 2014 that it was in the process of rationalising its suite of products, which took effect on 1 February 2015 for contracts and data services.

These changes included price increases, which caught Cell C subscribers who missed the announcement by surprise.

According to the City Press, National Consumer Commission spokesperson Trevor Hattingh said although these changes seem unfair, Icasa may have approved these conditions.

Cell C said in terms of the subscriber agreement with the company, as well as the Consumer Protection Act, it has the option of varying any of its charges from time to time.

These changes are done by means of publishing an amended tariff plan and submitting such a tariff plan to Icasa, and by informing customers before any of these charges are levied.

These charges include connection fees, subscription fees, usage charges, SIM card fees, goods fees, and any other charge relating to the provision of Cell C’s services to users in terms of the subscriber agreement.

Cell C said it submitted the amended tariff plan to Icasa and notified customers of the pricing and product changes via one or more of the following methods: SMS, pop up messages on data devices, monthly invoices, or on the Cell C website.

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Shock mobile price hikes investigated