[maemo-users] [maemo-users] 770 on the way

From: Frantisek Dufka dufkaf at seznam.cz
Date: Mon Dec 4 14:05:48 EET 2006
Wolfgang Karall wrote:
> Just jumping in on this: here in Austria I guess 80-90% of phones are
> sold by mobile operators including a contract (binding customers usually
> for 24 months). The phones are usually SIM/Network-locked and also
> branded by the operator, but usually way cheaper than when buying them
> without contract (most low end phones are given away with the contract
> for free), which is probably the reason why they do get sold that way at
> all.

Well, so maybe we are lucky in Czech Republic after all. That number 70% 
of customers with prepaid cards I found in some press release of one 
operator here. I also found we currently have 11.45 milion active SIM 
cards (population is less that 10milion) so it means 114 active cards to 
100 people. Sim locking was used here too but it was abandoned year or 
two ago by all operators. Probably because customers hated such phones. 
It was harder to use when switching prepaid cards and harder to sell 
them second hand.

Phones are branded too which is still reason why not to buy them :-) 
They are (IMHO) cheaper only if you really call a lot (i.e being a 
businessman with expensive contract) otherwise even 'discounted' 
operator phones (even with contract) are still a bit more expensive or 
have similar price like regular ones you buy on each corner. Also young 
people switch phones like socks (I mean often :-) so new 'discounted' 
phone after two years of contract is not very attractive.

As for operators all three we have were local but were recently bought 
one by one by T-mobile, Vodafone and O2 so maybe things will get worse. 
But maybe not.

But we have similar monopolistic behaviour with banks. You pay monthly 
fee for simply having bank account and then pay for each little thing 
you do (local money transfers both for send and receive, drawing cash 
from ATM, ...). Banks were recently sold too but this still remains. One 
bank here recently cancelled fees when you receive money because some 
people wanted to annoy co-worker and told friends to send him 1CZK via 
money transfer and he had to pay hundreds (incoming fee was 5CZK) and 
balance went below zero. It was a bit medialized then :-)

But this is really off topic now :-)


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