Five facts about MTRs
- 1. £750m in 2008
In 2008, UK mobile operators took over £750 million from you for phoning a mobile from a landline. That’s over £60 million per month or £2 million per day. And currently, it’s legal.
- 2. How much?
MTRs cost more than 10 times that of fixed-line termination rates (calls to landlines).
- 3. Up to 80%
The current mobile termination rates cost you up to 80% of the price per minute of a call from a home phone line to a mobile
- 4. You pay a high price
MTRs create a ‘price floor’ that keeps consumer prices high, because charging less than the MTR is not practical.
- 5. A barrier to carefree calling
Excessive MTRs stop many people from using mobiles freely and they stop landline customers from calling mobiles.
Why do we have mobile termination rates?
When you call a friend on a different mobile network, their network will charge your network a fee for receiving (or ‘carrying’) the call. This is called a Mobile Termination Rate or MTR. The current charge is around 4p or more for every minute you’re connected to another network. The billions of minutes for which this fee is charged adds up to billions of pounds for UK consumers each year.
So that’s how much it costs for mobiles. What about calling a landline?
The termination rate for calling BT fixed-line services (known as landlines) from your mobile are just 0.3p per minute. But if you call a mobile from a landline the 4p (or more) MTR applies. The termination rate costs you up to 80% of the price per minute of a call from a home line to a mobile!
But if I’m using another operator’s network. Isn’t that fair?
We don’t think so. We know consumers needn’t be charged anywhere near this much. Current regulation makes Mobile Termination Rates at least 10 times more expensive than landline termination rates (and well in excess of the true cost).
Why are networks allowed to do this?
MTRs generate billions of pounds in revenue for mobile phone operators every year and while the industry regulator, Ofcom, is trying its best to balance the needs of big business and the British consumer, the consumer is ultimately losing out.
So what are we doing about it?
- More than 65 organisations are campaigning for Ofcom to lower MTRs:
BT, Three, moneysupermarket.com, the Federation of Small Businesses, the Post Office, Carers UK, the National Union of Students, Help the Aged, and the Royal College of Nursing are just a few of the organisations on board.
- Over 40 councils are also among those who support the campaign.
- 262 MPs signed an Early Day Motion in support of lower MTRs.
- Public pressure has helped make this EDM the 7th most supported by MPs.
- Our petition now has more than 130,000 signatures, thanks to people like you.