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Text to Switch rules come into force today!

Mobile phone users who are reluctant to brave the process of changing to a new contract or network will find it far easier from today (July 1st) as the new Text to Switch rules come into effect.

These will allow mobile customers to leave their existing network by sending a single text message, greatly simplifying the whole process.

There are currently at least 15% of mobile users who are out of contract and cumulatively paying £27.4 million more than they should be every month – resulting in a total overspend of more than £325 million a year. These customers will now be able to switch to a new and better deal almost instantly.

Two in five switchers have experienced difficulties in moving to a different network in the past. Some have struggled to take their existing number to their new handset; some have found it hard to navigate websites – while others have simply got too frustrated with automated phone services and being placed on hold by call centres.

With around 10 million people planning to change phones this year alone, the simplified process will make an immediate difference to a large number of consumers.

Ernest Doku, mobiles expert at uSwitch.com, comments: “Disappointingly, people who are out of contract are overpaying by nearly £100 a year on their current deal, in many cases still paying for a handset that has long been paid off. And this doesn’t take into account that there are likely to be deals existing with more data for less money since they last took out a new contract.

“By ensuring that a consumer doesn’t have to call their provider to tell them they want to leave, the hassle of switching has now been reduced, and with potential savings available for millions of customers, comparing what offers are available on the market should make this an absolute no-brainer.

Whats does this mean for the Channel? As soon as you move beyond a single connection per account and to a business account which may have multiple connections the rules change. Customers can request their PAC or STAC (switching providers but NOT retaining their number) for 2 to 24 connections via any mobile/ online/ telephone method. Upon providing the information requested partners must also provide information on outstanding monies owed.

In the next episode of Comms Business Live, Monday 8th July at 3:30pm, we will be discussing the impact of Text to Switch, also called Autoswitch, on Channel Partners with some industry stake holders. Readers can tune via the #CBLive19 hashtag or view that episode here on the Comms Business website. If you have any questions on the Autoswitch rules and how they impact you please tweet them using the #CBLive19 tag.

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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine