Telecom pulls back the curtain on XT pricing ... a little
As previously flagged, Telecom emphasised, speed, coverage and transparency of billing over any price war on Vodafone as it announced the “structure” of pricing for its new XT network today, with an aggressive deal only hinted at in one instance.
Specific pricing was thin on the ground.
The telco won’t do a full reveal until XT’s launch on May 29.
But when pressed by NBR, head of retail Alan Gourdie said XT’s 200MB a month data plan would be “66% cheaper” than the Vodafone equivalent. This was the only example - at least given today - of a plan that really took it to the opposition.
Telecom will also offer a $1 a day casual data plan for XT, with a 10MB cap (the same as Vodafone’s casual plan).
XT data plans will run up to 3GB a month.
In terms of voice plans, Mr Gourdie said that the 60 plans available for Telecom’s CDMA mobile network will be condensed to 14 “OneRate” plans for XT.
Specific pricing was only offered in one example.
Mr Gourdie said one a OneRate 250 plan, mobile calls would cost 40 cents a minute up to the 250 minutes purchased, then the same 40 cents a minute for any additional minutes. The rate is the same whether minutes are used on or off peak, on Telecom's network or for calls made to another carrier.
This was contrasted with a Vodafone plan that costs 44 cents a minute peak and 50 cents off-peak.
Making allowance for telco’s standard practice for comparing each other’s plans in the least favourable possible light, the difference is relatively narrow.
Mr Gourdie also stressed that Telecom would offer per-second billing after the first minute.
In terms of international roaming, Mr Gourdie said there would be five international zones, with the same per minute price given for each zone. One pricing example was given: the UK, where calls will cost $2.40 a minute. No international data rates have been given.
Shared calling plans will be another feature of XT.
Mr Gourdie said a family of cellphone users could, for example, buy a single 250-minute calling plan to get the lowest possible per minute-rate charges (XT will follow the usual mobile paradigm of minutes being cheaper the more you buy).
Similarly, a small business could buy 750 minutes to share between its cellphone users.
As with all XT plans, there will be a single rate, whether calls are peak or off-peak, or on Telecom’s network or made to a customer on another network.
Mr Gourdie also said that plans would be “highly customisable” with customers able to “bolt on” blocks of txt minutes or data to base voice plans.
Cracking the XT price code - one of Telecom's slides from this morning. It doesn't reveal any plan pricing, but is designed to show that minutes get cheaper the more you buy: