Give me a billing meter for my roaming data charges

Give me a billing meter for my roaming data charges

Summary: During my recent trip to Sydney, Australia, I racked up a monthly mobile phone bill of US$5,300 (S$7,300), my highest phone bill so far. I checked the detailed bill from my mobile operator and I saw several roaming data charges like this:47200 Kbytes - GPRS/3G Data - US$758.

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TOPICS: Big Data
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During my recent trip to Sydney, Australia, I racked up a monthly mobile phone bill of US$5,300 (S$7,300), my highest phone bill so far. I checked the detailed bill from my mobile operator and I saw several roaming data charges like this:

47200 Kbytes - GPRS/3G Data - US$758.68 (S$1,032.50)

This worked out to roughly US$0.016 (S$0.022) per KByte of roaming data usage. This may not seem much, but when you're sending/receiving e-mail messages with large file attachments and downloading/uploading large files (for example, to Google Apps) like I did, you'll rack up a huge bill fairly quickly.

I was using 3.5G mobile broadband in Sydney; on a slower data network I probably wouldn't have incurred such a high bill. My roaming voicecall charges were a lot lower than my roaming data charges.

I don't regret paying the hefty roaming data charges out of my own pocket. I appreciate the convenience and the business benefits of sharing large volumes of information with my colleagues and customers from anywhere in the world.

I just wished there was a billing meter that could tell me, in real-time, how much I'd have to pay for my roaming data charges. I'm even willing to pay for such a service if my mobile operator offers it.

Have you got a huge phone bill before? Tell us about it in Talkback.

Topic: Big Data

Lee Lup Yuen

About Lee Lup Yuen

Lee Lup Yuen is passionate about mobile phones and PDAs, as he is constantly buying new gadgets and programming them in J2ME, .NET, Symbian and AppForge.
He has developed commercial applications with mobile technologies like SMS, MMS, WAP, 3G video streaming and location-based services.

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3 comments
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  • Give me a billing meter for my roaming data charges

    Don't mind paying $5300 for a mobile phone bill out of pocket? Wow, you must make a lot more money than I do. I had an unexpected bill for $700 recently and I was depressed for 2 days.

    Unless you are making fistfuls of money, I might suggest turning off attachment downloads. If you really need the attachments, find a WiFi hotspot.
    anonymous
  • Give me a billing meter for my roaming data charges

    I agree it's depressing to get an unexpectedly large phone bill. I was working in a part of town without public WiFi access and I used the hotel broadband network whenever possible. Using the roaming data service was the only way I could keep connected during the day.
    lupyuen
  • Give me a billing meter for my roaming data charges

    Simply put, it this way. There is no business driver for operators to do so.

    On the other hand, all the inter-ops backend billing system has a frault detection mechanism which puts a limit on your roaming bill. Very much like you credit card ;-)
    anonymous