2 degrees launch

Geekzone:

Confirmed $0.44 per minute to other mobile networks. Also confirmed $0.09 per SMS.

2Degrees starts with Prepay offering only because 75% of local market is Prepay. It will offer free GST receipts and online statements.

The $0.44 per minute is also valid for 21 countries.

Instant rewards for topups – "Magic Topups" Topping up within 30 days and you get free stuff: $20 gives 100 SMS credits.

$0.22 per minute from 2Degrees to 2Degrees mobile, or to any landline.

Initial thoughts….kinda underwhelmed…Telecom’s $10TXT will cost 2Degrees customers $45 and call rates are nowhere near cheap enough to eliminate advantages of BestMates or $10TXT. I suppose the theory is that there are fewer hassles deciphering what networks people are on this way, but what’s the point if it’s still too expensive to justify calling someone and there’s no way you can alter your usage to bring your costs down? Yes, calling mobiles is not that much more expensive than texting a telecom mobile on vodafone prepay now…but so what? Texting to other networks on VFone Prepay was already expensive…and people who relied on it switched to $10TXT years ago. That doesn’t mean they’d be willing to pay that same VFone prepay TXTing rate just for the pleasure of hearing someone’s sexy voice for a minute. And anyway, when you call someone you typically use more than 1 minute. Why? Because half the time it diverts to Voicemail…the other half your call time goes just over the 1minute mark and the network pings you for twice the minutes!

iPhone users can take a little solace in the fact that 2Degrees will be the first NZ network to use EDGE which allows for faster 2G speeds on iPhone…bad news is that faster speed will cost you 50c per MB(???!!!).

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