$20 text plan or keeping my kidney?

so which is it...? Texting or a kidney...?

so which is it…? Texting or a kidney…?

I don’t know about you but texting rates are getting outright ridiculous.  Texting prices have risen 100% in the last 3 years while the actual cost to the carriers of sending those messages has actually decreased slightly.  Prices have gone from around .10 cents up to .20 cents per message.  While .10 cents doesn’t seem like a whole lot, when you look at the average person sending several hundred a month, the cost adds up quick!  Prices have risen so dramatically and systematically between the big four carriers that congress has taken notice.  Sen. Herb Kohl, chairmen of the Senate Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights Subcommittee, sent letters to AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile asking about the insane rate hike.  He wants the carriers to release hard data about their actual cost spent on sending every text message, picture message, phone call, and every other type of data so that they and the consumer can see the real picture.

Here’s an example to put it in perspective.  A typical “unlimited” (that is false advertising by the way) data plan is about $30.  Also of note, a typical “unlimited” data plan is capped at around 5GB/month.

  • At $30/month for 5120 Megabytes (5 Gigabytes) of data it costs about .006 cents/Megabyte.

Your typical unlimited texting plan costs around $20/month.  A text message is 160 bytes of data.  If 160 bytes of data costs twenty cents, then 1MB (1,048,576 bytes) of data would cost 131,072 cents, or $1,310.72!!  Obviously we are getting raped in the text messaging department.  To make it a little easier to read:

  • 1MB worth of texts (1,048,576 bytes) x .20 cents = 131,072 cents, which = $1,310.72!!

So, by all intents and purposes we should be using mobile email or a data based IM application (as those are counted as data and not a text message) to send messages to each other.  The carriers have figured out a way to reap huge profits by deliberately gouging its customers.  Finally with the help of congress maybe, just maybe we can get more reasonable texting rates.  If you feel the same as me, (and if you text, I’m sure you do) write or call your service provider asking about the increases.  Eventually they will have to come clean.

sources: Crunchgear, TopTechNews