FCC: Cellcos Must Warn About Overage Fees

Posted by Sam Churchill on

The FCC today announced that their Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau (CGB) is considering rules that would require wireless carriers to warn customers about extra fees for using more voice minutes or data than their plan allows.

The Bureau is seeking input on ways to alert consumers about potential high charges before they add up.

The FCC said Tuesday (pdf press release) that it will look at methods such as text message alerts used in Europe to warn customers when they incur roaming or data charges that aren’t part of their normal plan.

Under AT&T’s $40 data plan, for example, overage charges are $100 per GB – with little or no consumer warning of overage charges. Downloading 2.2 GB/month, for example, would run you $240.

The FCC is issuing a Public Notice looking for input from consumers. It may nudge carriers toward implementing some kind of voluntarily “notify and cutoff” system — avoiding mandatory regulation, says Broadband Reports.

Posted by Sam Churchill on Tuesday, May 11th, 2010 at 9:21 am .

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