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  1. #1
    Thomas T. Veldhouse
    Guest
    http://www.chron.com/cs/CDA/ssistory...siness/2047155

    Now, isn't this interesting. It appears that the articles author was not
    aware that Sprint is actually charging $1.10 / line, not $0.63 / customer.

    Ouch .. this make Sprint the worst offender of them all.

    Tom Veldhouse





    See More: Number Portability -- Sprint cited




  2. #2
    W0KIE
    Guest

    Re: Number Portability -- Sprint cited


    Fees to cover cell number switching may earn carriers profits
    Associated Press

    08/14/03


    NEW YORK (AP) Some cell phone companies appear poised to profit off a
    new
    fee that covers the cost of enabling customers to switch wireless
    services
    without giving up their phone numbers.

    The fee, permitted by the federal government, is already being levied
    by
    four national carriers and is generally less than $1 per month. But
    that
    adds up quickly when multiplied across the millions of subscribers each

    carrier serves.

    And in certain cases, the money being collected appears to exceed the
    actual cost of meeting a November deadline set by the Federal
    Communications Commission for "number portability" which will let
    people
    keep their cell numbers when switching wireless providers.

    Sprint PCS, for example, has about 17.9 million customers who began
    paying
    an additional 63 cents per month in July, generating $11.3 million per

    month for "cost recovery."

    Over the course of a year, Sprint's fee would bring in about $135
    million
    at current subscriber levels though that amount likely will be even
    higher since Sprint and other carriers are signing up hundreds of
    thousands
    of new customers per quarter.

    Sprint refused to quantify its expense for enabling number portability

    beyond a rough estimate of "hundreds of millions of dollars" an
    amount
    several times larger than more specific estimates disclosed by rivals
    Verizon Wireless and Cingular Wireless. Similarly, Nextel
    Communications
    says it has spent about twice the costs estimated by Verizon and
    Cingular.

    Although costs surely vary among the different companies, government
    officials and industry analysts say there is little reason to expect
    those
    expenses to vary widely as the carriers upgrade systems and create
    verification processes similar to those that long-distance phone
    companies
    use when a customer switches from one service to another.

    "A reasonable person would say that carriers of similar size, serving
    the
    same markets, providing the same level of service, would have similar
    cost
    structures," said John Muleta, the chief of the FCC's wireless telecom

    bureau. In fact, he added, almost all wireless carriers are using the
    same
    software vendor to implement number portability.

    Other carriers lump their fee for the changeover in with other charges

    related to regulatory mandates, such as providing enhanced 911
    capabilities
    so a cell phone can be pinpointed in an emergency.

    Nextel has been charging $1.55 per month since October; Since the
    spring,
    AT&T Wireless has been charging some customers what it calls a
    temporary
    fee of $1.75. Since April, Cingular has been charging from 32 cents to

    $1.25 per month depending on the state. Verizon says it has not yet
    decided
    whether to levy a number portability fee.

    Beyond a general requirement under federal law that such fees be "just
    and
    reasonable," there is no specific cap. Likewise, the FCC does not
    require
    the companies to report their actual expenses and the agency is not
    monitoring the fees.

    But other government officials, and consumer advocates, have criticized
    the
    new fees as excessive.

    "Sprint is just asking for regulation, and we'll bring tougher
    regulation
    on them if they do things like this," said Sen. Charles Schumer,
    D-N.Y.

    Sprint stood firm in asserting it has already spent "hundreds of
    millions
    of dollars" to prepare for number portability. That figure contrasts
    sharply with public estimates from Verizon, which has irked its rivals
    by
    breaking ranks with the industry's long-standing opposition to wireless

    number portability.

    Verizon says it has spent about $60 million on preparations, and
    estimated
    its ongoing costs to facilitate number portability at 10 or 15 cents
    per
    subscriber per month.

    With 34.6 million subscribers, Verizon's estimate suggests that it
    expects
    monthly portability expenses of up to $5.2 million, or less than half
    the
    amount Sprint will be collecting per month.

    Verizon's figures are consistent with the estimates provided by
    Cingular,
    which told The Associated Press that setup expenses have totaled about
    $50
    million so far, while ongoing costs are expected to be about $50
    million
    per year.

    As such, if Sprint's fee is generating $11.3 million per month, the
    company
    will have collected at least $55 million by the time portability is
    supposed to go into effect Nov. 24, an amount that would be enough to
    defray all or most of the set-up costs indicated by Verizon and
    Cingular.

    Thereafter, if Sprint's ongoing expenses for number portability are
    similar
    to those indicated by Verizon and Cingular, Sprint's "recovery" fee may

    generate more than $5 million in extra monthly revenue.

    Nextel, which has already collected more than $200 million to cover
    various
    regulatory costs, said it has spent "more than $100 million" in
    preparation
    for portability, but has declined to quantify its E911 expenditures.

    Cingular's average fee of 50 cents for all regulatory-related costs
    approximates what Sprint collects for number portability alone.

    AT&T Wireless, which declined to quantify its costs related to number
    portability or E911, is currently collecting the $1.75 from "less than
    a
    third" of its 21.5 million customers. Collection totals will increase
    as
    the company adds new customers and as service contracts for existing
    customers come up for renewal.

    However, Doug Brandon, AT&T Wireless' vice president for federal
    affairs,
    said most of the costs for number portability stem from the
    preparations.
    Once those expenses are covered, "we will eliminate or substantially
    reduce
    the fee to cover the ongoing administrative costs."

    Neither Nextel, Cingular nor Sprint indicated any plan to stop charging
    for
    number portability.

    --
    Posted at SprintUsers.com - Your place for everything Sprint PCS
    Free wireless access @ www.SprintUsers.com/wap




  3. #3
    Phil, Squid-in-Training
    Guest

    Re: Number Portability -- Sprint cited

    Anyone think that people leaving due to the charge will be blacklisted?

    --
    Phil, Squid-in-Training





  4. #4
    Phillipe
    Guest

    Re: Number Portability -- Sprint cited

    In article <gmN%[email protected]>,
    "Phil, Squid-in-Training" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Anyone think that people leaving due to the charge will be blacklisted?


    Blacklisted by whom against doing what?



  5. #5
    Phil, Squid-in-Training
    Guest

    Re: Number Portability -- Sprint cited



    "Phillipe" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news[email protected]
    > In article <gmN%[email protected]>,
    > "Phil, Squid-in-Training" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > > Anyone think that people leaving due to the charge will be blacklisted?

    >
    > Blacklisted by whom against doing what?
    >


    Could Sprint discriminate against a certain customer because he or she left
    Sprint early?

    --
    Phil, Squid-in-Training





  6. #6
    Phillipe
    Guest

    Re: Number Portability -- Sprint cited

    In article <hCN%[email protected]>,
    "Phil, Squid-in-Training" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >
    >
    > "Phillipe" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news[email protected]
    > > In article <gmN%[email protected]>,
    > > "Phil, Squid-in-Training" <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >
    > > > Anyone think that people leaving due to the charge will be blacklisted?

    > >
    > > Blacklisted by whom against doing what?
    > >

    >
    > Could Sprint discriminate against a certain customer because he or she left
    > Sprint early?


    Certainly, but why would you have dealings with Sprint if you leave them?



  7. #7
    Bob Smith
    Guest

    Re: Number Portability -- Sprint cited


    "Phil, Squid-in-Training" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:hCN%[email protected]
    >
    >
    > "Phillipe" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news[email protected]
    > > In article <gmN%[email protected]>,
    > > "Phil, Squid-in-Training" <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >
    > > > Anyone think that people leaving due to the charge will be

    blacklisted?
    > >
    > > Blacklisted by whom against doing what?
    > >

    >
    > Could Sprint discriminate against a certain customer because he or she

    left
    > Sprint early?


    Absolutely, if those folks left before their AA expired, and still owed the
    cancellation fee and hadn't paid it.

    Bob





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