When Telecom launched XT in May, Vodafone was quick to point out the upgraded networks’ plans’ lacked $10 txt. So was Vodafone’s virtual network partner Black+White, which staged a publicity-stunt funeral procession for the plan.
$10 all-you-can-eat txt had been a hit for Telecom’s old CDMA network, helping keep customers loyal while Vodafone launched far flashier 3G services.
But one of the telco’s goals in launching XT was to encourage customers to spend more time talking and sending data, and less time on lower-margin txt.
At the time of Black+White's $10 txt funeral, in June, Telecom said: "$10TXT has been replaced on the new XT Network with a choice of three texting plans $6 for 150 texts, $12 for 600 texts and $18 for 1500 texts to any network. These three plans have been introduced to more accurately reflect different customers’ texting needs and represent considerably more value for heavy texters (e.g. $0.012 per text on the $18 plan)."
And it all looked to be going according well at Telecom’s quarterly update on August 21, at which the company claimed arpu (average revenue per user) was 20% higher for XT subscribers.
But today, Telecom relented and introduced a $12 txt plan for XT, dubbed Non-Stop-Text.
The new bolt-on option lets you send an unlimited number of messages.
An XT customer can change from their current XT text plan to the new Non-Stop Text without penalty – as long as they sign up between now and 31 January 2010.
The catches: the offer expires in January 2011, and a vague fair use provision says your number of txt messages cannot exceed an un-specified historic average.
Telecom is due to reveal its first detailed XT subscriber numbers at its next financial update, November 6.