Google plans to put an end to international roaming fees

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It is being reported that Google is in talks with mobile network operators that will allow some subscribers to be charged domestic rates for any calls they make whilst overseas.

Google plans to initially offer US based customers use of its soon to be launched mobile network when they’re travelling outside of the United States, without having to pay any of the traditional roaming fees normally charged to customers when they use their mobile abroad.

The UK’s Daily Telegraph reports that Google is in talks with Hong Kong based Hutchison Whampoa, which operates the Three network in the UK and is also reportedly about to purchase O2 from Telefonica.

As well as in Hong Kong and the United Kingdom, Hutchinson Whampoa also operate mobile networks in a number of countries in Southeast Asia and Europe including Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Austria, Denmark, Ireland, Italy and Sweden.

Earlier this year, Google exec Sundar Pichai announced plans to launch its own mobile network service through exclusive partnerships with a number of mobile operators that would enable the Internet giant to use existing mobile infrastructure.

Putting an end to international roaming fees could potentially have a huge impact on the market and would almost certainly be welcomed by consumers.

International roaming fees can be incredibly costly for those who use their mobile phone for calls, messaging or data transfer when travelling overseas.

In Europe, politicians and consumer rights groups have been campaigning for a unified telecoms market in the EU, part of which would prevent customers being charged roaming fees from 2015 onwards. However, these fees generate huge revenue for mobile operators all over Europe.

In March, the European Commission dealt another blow to mobile users in Europe when it blocked proposed plans to scrap international roaming fees.

 

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