The great SMS rip-off: Texting is the most expense data charge

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text.jpgIf anyone saw last week’s Channel Four documentary “The Mobile Phone Rip-Off” then none of this will come as much of a surprise to you. If you didn’t, then prepare to be stunned.

I’ll cut to the chase and give you the maths in a minute. Data sent via text costs around £374.49 per MB and that’s at a generous rate of 5p per text. You don’t have to be a genius to work out that’s an absolute con. That’s about 100 times the rate of GPRS or 3G data rates from your normal mobile service provider.

Even getting information from the Hubble Space Telescope only costs a maximum of £85 per MB, 42 times cheaper than SMS. It’s not hard to see why an ex-mobile industry supremo described texting as as close to pure profit as you get.

Do the math:

One SMS is around 140 bytes and cost 5p. So the cost per byte is 5p/140 = approx. 0.036p

There are 1,048,576 bytes in 1MB, so the cost per MB is 0.036 x 1,048,576 = 37449p = £374.49 = utter con.

(via the Register)

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Daniel Sung