SMS Pricing

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ForumAdmin
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SMS Pricing

Post by ForumAdmin » Tue Aug 24, 2010 12:31 pm

Customers who have used the Exetel SMS service will remember that we had to increase the price from 5 cents to 8 cents for some months before finding a way to reduce it to 5 cents again.

That issue was caused by the routing we were using (and that any other provider of a low cost SMS service was using) becoming progressively unavailable. That situation has returned with it now being very, very difficult to send SMS to Telstra mobiles at a cost that can support a 5 cent end user price. Shortly it will be impossible to do that.

We are still trying to find a sensible/reliable way to send SMS at the lowest possible costs to our customers but this is a 'heads up' that it may not be possible.

As you may appreciate, Exetel make very little money from providing the SMS service at 5 cents per message and we have absolutely no room to absorb what looks like being a 100% price increase to us.

We will do our best to provide the lowest possible cost SMS service if the worst comes to the worst.

bilal
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by bilal » Tue Sep 07, 2010 6:12 am

Ah what a roller coaster!

tones
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by tones » Tue Sep 07, 2010 8:22 am

Will the 'Add On' Bonus Pack for sms still be available or will it's pricing need to be re-evaluated as well?

VP2 - 30 x 160 character Australian SMS for $1.00 per month

ForumAdmin
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by ForumAdmin » Tue Sep 07, 2010 1:32 pm

tones wrote:Will the 'Add On' Bonus Pack for sms still be available or will it's pricing need to be re-evaluated as well?

VP2 - 30 x 160 character Australian SMS for $1.00 per month
In time - almost certainly.....but not this month.

We are still looking at whether we can have a 'two tier' SMS service with 'premium' SMS to Telstra mobiles at 10 cents and the other Australian mobile carriers at 5 cents.

We are also looking at the costs of international SMS.

Dimand
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by Dimand » Tue Sep 07, 2010 4:26 pm

ForumAdmin wrote:
tones wrote:Will the 'Add On' Bonus Pack for sms still be available or will it's pricing need to be re-evaluated as well?

VP2 - 30 x 160 character Australian SMS for $1.00 per month
In time - almost certainly.....but not this month.

We are still looking at whether we can have a 'two tier' SMS service with 'premium' SMS to Telstra mobiles at 10 cents and the other Australian mobile carriers at 5 cents.

We are also looking at the costs of international SMS.
I would be perfectly happy if only the cost to telstra numbers increaced. Much better than an 100% price increace anyway.
I love the 5c texts I get. :D This might make me look into an addon pack though.

ForumAdmin
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by ForumAdmin » Tue Sep 07, 2010 4:54 pm

We have found a way of keeping the 'old' service going at a rate of 6 cents per 160 character message.

International SMS will remain at 8.8 cents per 160 character message.

Dimand
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by Dimand » Tue Sep 07, 2010 5:53 pm

ForumAdmin wrote:We have found a way of keeping the 'old' service going at a rate of 6 cents per 160 character message.

International SMS will remain at 8.8 cents per 160 character message.
That is awesome. Thank you, I dont think anyone could see a 1 cent price increase as higly unreasonable.

ForumAdmin
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by ForumAdmin » Tue Sep 07, 2010 6:37 pm

Dimand wrote:
ForumAdmin wrote:We have found a way of keeping the 'old' service going at a rate of 6 cents per 160 character message.

International SMS will remain at 8.8 cents per 160 character message.
That is awesome. Thank you, I dont think anyone could see a 1 cent price increase as higly unreasonable.
I don't know how long this 'work around' will be available - as with last year there is little doubt that the 'grey routes' will eventually be made unworkable.

There is also an increasing number of business users, and all government users, who "for security reasons" demand that all routing remains in Australia.

There is also no doubt that the Australia only routing is faster and more reliable.

Akdor 1154
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by Akdor 1154 » Tue Sep 07, 2010 9:59 pm

are you able to give us a rundown of the actual problems that you guys are experiencing with routing? if it's a case of Telstra just being dicks, is there a chance of getting the ACCC involved? (they'll jump at any chance they can get to have a go at Telstra, and I'm sure some of the other budget carriers/SMS wholesalers would support this)

ForumAdmin
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by ForumAdmin » Wed Sep 08, 2010 7:44 am

Akdor 1154 wrote:are you able to give us a rundown of the actual problems that you guys are experiencing with routing? if it's a case of Telstra just being dicks, is there a chance of getting the ACCC involved? (they'll jump at any chance they can get to have a go at Telstra, and I'm sure some of the other budget carriers/SMS wholesalers would support this)
As far as I understand it - the issue is simply that Telstra will not accept SMS from the carriers we use in the US and the EU and therefore messages will not get delivered the first time and have to be re-routed causing long delays in delivery some times - and sometimes the message doesn't get delivered at all if it exceeds the 're-try parameters'.

These are commercial arrangements between Telstra and other carriers and the decision is simply a commercial one taken by a commercial company.

trk
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by trk » Wed Sep 08, 2010 9:20 am

ForumAdmin wrote: We are still looking at whether we can have a 'two tier' SMS service with 'premium' SMS to Telstra mobiles at 10 cents and the other Australian mobile carriers at 5 cents.
This sounds really good, I'd love to see this roll around.

Mainly for the selfish reason that 99% of my SMSs go to Extel (via Vodaphone) accounts, or Optus users.

Lawrie
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by Lawrie » Wed Sep 08, 2010 9:59 am

As far as I understand it - the issue is simply that Telstra will not accept SMS from the carriers we use in the US and the EU and therefore messages will not get delivered the first time and have to be re-routed causing long delays in delivery some times - and sometimes the message doesn't get delivered at all if it exceeds the 're-try parameters'.
This explains those occasions where my SMS to a Telstra phone have failed. I thought I had gone crazy!

fsm
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by fsm » Tue Sep 14, 2010 2:54 am

I apologise if this is a dumb question. So what mechanism do (multi-homed) SMS providers, for that matter ITSPs, and other carriers use to discover if the destination is indeed a Telstra number ? I assume its safe to send anything to Telstra that has a Telstra prefix but what about numbers which have been ported to Telstra and don't have Telstra prefixes?

I agree ACMA/ACCC should come aboard and knock heads together to resolve this unsatisfactory situation. Good on Exetel for making us aware of the problem with foreign routing. Shame on the others for not. The ACMA should make sure other SMS service providers advise their customers of problems and refund charges for SMS that were charged for but not capable of being delivered.

Akdor 1154
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by Akdor 1154 » Wed Nov 03, 2010 4:28 pm

What I was trying to hint at was, why is it cheaper to route an SMS via the US than do it locally?

James
Exetel Staff
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Re: SMS Pricing

Post by James » Thu Nov 04, 2010 8:52 am

Akdor 1154 wrote:What I was trying to hint at was, why is it cheaper to route an SMS via the US than do it locally?
Because the Australian cariers have a cozy little arrangement between themselves, forced on the other carriers by Telstra, of charging twice or three times as much as international carriers are prepared to accept.

So if telstra wants to send an SMS from its network to mobile networks in other countries the other countries say "we will charge you half a US cent to send your message to our country's destination on the condition that you charge us half a cent to send our messages to destinations on our network.

So if Exetel routes an SMS to an Australian carrier's network via a, for instance, USA of UK carrier, then they charge us a mark up on half a cent.

If we route direct to Telstra they charge 10 or 20 times that.

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