08UK have been conducting a questionnaire sampling the knowledge of telecom industry professionals and the general public regarding the pricing and costs to call 08 numbers. The basic idea behind this questionnaire was to try to show the pricing of Non-geographic Numbers is not clear and that Ofcom need to raise awareness regarding this issue and also to point out that the excessive charges often applied by the mobile networks are basically too high & are not justifiable. Tynan O’Hara takes us through the results of the 08UK survey in a bid to shed some light on the issue.
The feedback from the questionnaire was very interesting, some results were predictable and some were surprising. Comments gathered included, “I get confused sometimes at charges between a mobile and a landline as charges vary depending on who you have as your provider”,”I didn’t know some of the answers but it makes you think, I will find out the cost for peace of mind and pocket.” and plenty more. The questionnaire at very least opened the respondent’s eyes for when they next call an 08 number.
The questionnaire was completed by a good sample of a few hundred people, from a mixture of both industry professionals and the general public and results were as follows;-
A staggering 70% of people were not sure how much it costs to call an 0800 (Freephone) from a mobile phone, but a further 76% of people knew exactly how much it does cost to call the 0800 from a landline. So why does the term ‘Freephone’ confuse people? Surely the name ‘Free’phone is contradicting?
A nominal 12% of the results showed that people knew how much it costs to call an 03 number from a mobile. Is this another topic to show to Ofcom? Why is that number so low?
Another interesting statistic came from question 3; 31% of people were not sure whether to call an 08 number or a mobile. A high statistic showed that people are unsure which type of number is cheaper to call.
A mere 24% of the results knew how much it costs to call an 0845 from a mobile, leaving the other 76% not having a clue what the costs are when calling from a mobile. On the other hand, a steady 43% knew how much it costs to call the 0845 from a landline. Again, this is showing the confusion of the cost of calling Non-Geographic-Numbers from a mobile.
The most interesting results came from the pricing/costs for the 0871. A whopping 83% of people were unsure of the cost to call a 0871 from a mobile and a huge 78% of respondents did not know how much it costs to call the 0871 number from a landline.
The feedback we received, to some degree, was very predictable. The cost to call 08 numbers from a mobile phone is a topical subject and an area in which Ofcom need to resolve. Our most viewed page on one of our websites is the ‘call costs’ pages for 08 numbers, again proving that the pricing involved in calling a Non-Geographic-Number is unclear. The comments we received after the questionnaire supported the main objective of this exercise, a numerous amount of comments made were around the point “This got me thinking, I have got to be careful”.
With these results, we hope to show the market that there are still points that Ofcom need to address and to clarify. Why are the costs not clear? Why is the term ‘Freephone’ not Free to call from a mobile?
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