News - Updates, Rate Changes And Travel Tips

Telestial News

October 9, 2014

OUTNUMBERED

There are 7.2 billion people in the world, and more are being added at the rate of two per second. That’s pretty impressive, though not quite as impressive as what we’ve been able to achieve recently. After all, it’s taken us 200,000 years to get here. Mobile phones have been around for only 30 years, and yet in the time it takes us to make a new person, we’re making 5 mobile phones. And for the first time ever, the amount of active mobile phones in the world has overtaken the amount of people. We have just been outnumbered: all hail our new Android (or IOS) overlords!

It’s not surprising that attitudes are changing. We have moved from a world where your phone was static, fixed in place either in your home, on your desk or outside on the street, to a world where everything is portable. The latest advancements seem set to move an object that sits in your bag or pocket (assuming it doesn’t, ahem, bend) to one that you wear about your person in the form of a watch or a pair of glasses. And while it used to be the domain of spies, criminals or cheating spouses to own a second or third device, there are now plenty of reasons why you might want to own another phone.

Take travel, for example. If you’re headed overseas, you might feel that the fee charged by your provider to unlock your current smartphone handset is too expensive when compared with the price of standard cellphones these days. You may wish to travel with something ordinary to deflect attention from potential thieves, or it may be that you’re traveling to a place where recharging your power-hungry smartphone may not be possible every two days, and you want something that will last a little longer. You may even wish to upgrade your phone in order to travel, taking advantage of all the useful apps that are now available, such as maps, online restaurant reviews or translation software.

Here at Telestial, we are happy to be contributing to the world’s overpopulation of mobile phones. We believe in offering the greatest possible choice of options to our customers, at affordable prices.

October 2, 2014

EU ROAMING CHARGES - GLIDING TOWARD A CHANGE In April this year, consumers in the European Union received some welcome news – lawmakers announced that they would abolish roaming fees in all 28 states of the EU by December 2015. This would mean that a traveler from France going to Spain, for example, would pay the same for making calls in either country, an initiative known as RLAH (roam like you’re at home). However, a new proposal revealed in Italy last week makes things a little less clear. For one, there’s no longer any mention of a fixed date for the removal of these charges, and instead, a desire to create what they’re calling a ‘glidepath’. While we’re not entirely sure what a ‘glidepath’ is, it brings to mind network operators as a flock of majestic swans, drifting downstream toward the sea in their own sweet time. Ironically, the reasons behind the push to scrap these charges and operating networks’ reluctance to do so are exactly the same. Former EU telecoms commissioner Neelie Kroes wanted to use the change to encourage operators to invest in faster networks – but the operators are now saying that this expected loss of income would mean that they’re not able to make such investments. So what does this mean for consumers? It’s too early to tell, as nothing has yet been agreed. It does seem that there may be a move to a gradual phasing out of roaming costs rather than abolishment as initially proposed. There may also be a ‘fair use’ calculation, based upon average annual domestic consumption. Under these proposals, an amount of roaming would be permissible under this ‘fair use’ tariff, but once that is used up, higher charges will apply. Discussions are ongoing, but we will be keeping  a close eye on them. Don’t forget to check back here for all the latest news.

October 2, 2014


THE SAME STORY THE WORLD OVER

If you’ve ever felt your blood pressure rise upon discovering just how much you are being charged in roaming fees while you’re abroad, then don’t worry. You’re not alone. In fact, it seems to be the same everywhere you go. It’s certainly the case in South Africa, with 92% of respondents in a recent survey by travel company Travelstart saying that the roaming fees charged by their domestic providers are too high.

There’s a good deal of additional information about South African travel habits, such as the types of handset they use and what they use them for, and whether they switch their cellphones off when they fly (spoiler: 2% of them are very naughty indeed). Check out the article here.

August 18, 2014

Mobile Data Update: Data is now available in Laos with our international SIM cards. Also, data rates in Pakistan have been reduced.

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