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iPhone 3G Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming

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Apr 12, 2001
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TimesOnline warns that iPhone 3G owners will be able to rack up large wireless bills faster than ever. While the UK carrier for the Apple iPhone offers an unlimited data plan, this only applies when you are located in the UK. Once you travel abroad, the cost to download 1MB of data can be as high as £6/megabyte (~$12 US). This means an average BBC iPlayer program could cost as much as £1,800 when roaming in the U.S.

Of course, this is true for all mobile phones, but iPhone users do tend to take more advantage of their data plans. A number of stories emerged after the introduction of the original iPhone about inadvertently large roaming bills.

Fortunately, the iPhone firmware now allows you to turn data roaming off, which avoids accidentally walking into this problem.

Article Link
 

shadowfax

macrumors 603
Sep 6, 2002
5,849
0
Houston, TX
Well, as you say--fools can leave data roaming on. It's great that the iPhone makes it really easy to turn off data roaming.
 
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TimothyB

macrumors 6502a
Jun 20, 2008
757
47
Bay Area
This phone is going to put data plans into the hands of so many users that have no experience or knowledge of the costs for transferring data outside of your plan (abroad or no data plan sometimes). Like in one case, either it was a news story or a friend told me a family member downloaded a ton of songs through their phone as a tether to a laptop and had no data plan or something and got an ungodly dollar amount next bill.

Funny how these cell companies can charge people for this data. How does it go from unlimited for low $30 a month to the cost of a new car if you had no data plan or went abroad? There's sort of a discrepancy between those prices.

My 2nd and current cell phone has some data capabilities to check news, download games, etc. I didn't want to pay the monthly fee and shocked at the price with no data plan. It seems like they make it all or nothing. I still check news which has small photos now and then, only adding $3 to my bill, but if I were to buy a game through the phone, that could make it more expensive than a PS3 game just to transfer it. Really bugs me too that one of the main buttons on my cell phone takes me to the internet page, which gets bumped so many times, once I found it like 6 pages into the net.
 
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MojoWill

macrumors 6502
Jun 13, 2008
325
0
common sense tells you that roaming is expensive only stupid people ever get big bills!
 
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taylorwilsdon

macrumors 68000
Nov 16, 2006
1,868
12
New York City
How is this news? As far as I know, the data roaming option is DISABLED by default, so you would have to go out of your way and explicitly allow data roaming for this to happen, and nobody could say it was an accident if they did that.

Common sense must prevail...
 
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shadowfax

macrumors 603
Sep 6, 2002
5,849
0
Houston, TX
common sense tells you that roaming is expensive only stupid people ever get big bills!

Well, in all fairness, not all companies make this all obvious. I know my Razr had multiple buttons that would take you straight to the fakernet, and couldn't be disabled. So, anytime I accidentally hit one of those buttons it added several cents (at least) to my phone bill.

It's a significant step forward that the iPhone is the way it is--the data plan is more like internet at home, and roaming is (really?) disabled by default/easy to disable.
 
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JBaker122586

macrumors 65816
Jun 21, 2007
1,373
62
common sense tells you that roaming is expensive only stupid people ever get big bills!

100% agree.
If you get a huge bill from overseas data usage, you're an idiot and deserve to pay it in full. I said as much dozens of times when a bunch of morons were crying about the "unfair" charges they got just because they watched a few YouTube videos on a Mediterranean cruise. :rolleyes:
 
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kamm

macrumors regular
Feb 26, 2008
203
0
And why TF is this news, seriously?

Any phone can do the same:

Sony Ericsson 3G Phone Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming
Nokia 3G Phone Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming
HTC 3G Phone Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming

etc.


This is such a pathetic 'news-mfr'ing' now that I can smell sweating... :rolleyes:
 
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superleccy

macrumors 6502a
Oct 31, 2004
982
129
That there big London
Stupid... morons... whatever... is this news... whatever. It never hurts to remind the world of this little con. I know some people who would probably fall for this if they had an iPhone and I wouldn't call them morons... just naive.

This phone is going to put data plans into the hands of so many users that have no experience or knowledge of the costs for transferring data outside of your plan (abroad or no data plan sometimes).

Exactly.

Another "gotchya" to watch for is that with some networks you get charged a hefty fee for just opening a data connection - even if you transfer little or no data - and even if the reason you have to open a data connection is because your last one was dropped due to the crappy network.

Therefore, even light & casual data roaming can lead to shocking bills when you get home.

SL
 
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tomjleeds

macrumors 6502a
Jul 19, 2004
511
208
Manchester, UK
And why TF is this news, seriously?

Any phone can do the same:

Sony Ericsson 3G Phone Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming
Nokia 3G Phone Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming
HTC 3G Phone Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming

etc.


This is such a pathetic 'news-mfr'ing' now that I can smell sweating... :rolleyes:

On top of that, why is this a '3G' thing? OK, you can run it up 'faster' by having a faster connection, but the prices are the same.
 
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Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Jul 16, 2002
14,834
7,394
This phone is going to put data plans into the hands of so many users that have no experience or knowledge of the costs for transferring data outside of your plan (abroad or no data plan sometimes).

Ah, C'mon. It's a freaking phone, not Taser. People understand the concept of international roaming. And Blackberrys and Treos have been putting data plans in the hands of MILLIONS of people worldwide long before "iPhone," was part of the phone lexicon.

The issue with the roaming charges on the early iPhones was due to the fact there was no way to turn roaming off and people with email set to automatic got pinched, but Apple fixed that issue.
 
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tasset

macrumors 6502a
May 22, 2007
570
193
On the subject of roaming, if you turn off the data roaming does this make the GPS feature useless because the Maps app can't pull info from Google?
 
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Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Jul 16, 2002
14,834
7,394
On the subject of roaming, if you turn off the data roaming does this make the GPS feature useless because the Maps app can't pull info from Google?

If you are using wireless data yes. Nothing on the data side that isn't in RAM will work. Wi-Fi will still be available though, so you could use the GPS that way. I don't think the iPhones GPS uses real-time tracking anyway. Tom Tom is working on an app, but apparently can't release it b/c it violates the terms of the SDK license, which prohbits real time guidance or turn by turn guidance.
 
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bentmywookie

macrumors regular
Nov 6, 2002
155
0
Palo Alto
I'm sorry did everyone on MacRumors suddenly become 13 years old? Why are people "stupid" or "morons" if they were to get roaming charges? Yeah, a lot of people nowadays know about this stuff but I'm sure many other do not.

We all know cell phone companies are out there to make money and of course they always advertise everything in BIG BOLD letters right?

This post was pointing out something that most likely will not be well advertised to many iPhone users and could result in them paying an exorbitant amount of money they did not have or did not want to part with. Why is that so bad? Certainly you'd warn your parents or grandparents about phishers on the internet right? You wouldn't just call them morons and laugh at them when $10000 got taken out of their bank account.

Also - many more "non-smartphone" users are getting the iPhone and using the data plan where they wouldn't have before. I don't see what's to be gained by simply making fun of people that would fall into this trap.
 
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Yvan256

macrumors 603
Jul 5, 2004
5,049
927
Canada
Why is that so bad? Certainly you'd warn your parents or grandparents about phishers on the internet right? You wouldn't just call them morons and laugh at them when $10000 got taken out of their bank account.

Except that phishers and scammers are doing illegal things to try to rip people off. Telecom companies, on the other hand, are legal businesses selling a service while at the same time being sneaky about it (hidden fees, completely insane prices, etc).

I see this more as a reminder than as news. My next phone is going to be pay-as-I-go, since it seems to be the only way to pay the least amount possible every month (I talk maybe 30 minutes a month on my cellphone, at the most).
 
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GutBomb

macrumors regular
Jul 19, 2002
105
0
Outside Boston
I don't think the iPhones GPS uses real-time tracking anyway.

apple's iphone website said:
Get directions.
Get directions to wherever from wherever. View turn-by-turn directions or watch your progress with live GPS tracking.

http://www.apple.com/iphone/features/maps.html

There used to be a video of the maps in action on that page. It is now gone. It showed someone pressing the locate button, then entering a destination, it drawing a map on the screen, and then the blue dot representing them was being tracked along the map.

No idea why it's not there anymore.
 
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jonny

macrumors regular
Jun 28, 2007
136
0
Toronto
Forgive me if someone said this already... but say you're from Canada or the USA, and you travel between those two countries... Both have Edge still, is there not a switch to disable 3G and use the slower EDGE speeds to "preserve battery" and subsequently "preserve wallet". :p
 
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Cherimoya

macrumors member
Feb 12, 2008
66
0
NJ
Anyway the BBC iPlayer doesn't work outside the UK does it ? So that's a really crappy example
 
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3247

macrumors regular
Feb 9, 2008
236
4
Germany
Any phone can do the same:

Sony Ericsson 3G Phone Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming
Nokia 3G Phone Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming
HTC 3G Phone Users Can Run Their Bill Up Faster While Roaming
Except that those phones are available without simlock or netlock. With an iPhone, you can't insert a local SIM card to avoid usurious roaming charges.
 
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jb510

macrumors regular
Sep 19, 2007
163
6
Is it worth reporting on... YES... is it a well written clip... NO...

This is the kind of crap that gives "blogs" a bad name. Why not actually talk to a couple carriers and report something... anything about their international data plans and why astronomical data roaming fees persist? Questions like, "Is the price increase for roaming data proportional to the increase in wholesale costs for the carrier?" and "Do you have any plans to be more responsive to customers who regularly travel internationally?" Ok that questions is a bit leading and AT&T would likely claim they already do have plans for frequent international travelers referring to their international discount plans. However those plans are very limited and ridiculously over priced compared to local service over seas.

I digress a bit from my point but US domestic service is fairly expensive to being with, so when I go to Thailand or India or China which I do regularly why should I pay a 10-15x premium to roam on my US service when local service rates are 1/10th what they are in the US?



Newworthy... yes, lot's of people these daty
 
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bluebomberman

macrumors 6502a
Jan 9, 2005
919
0
Queens, NYC
People need to calm down. There are a lot of stupid people out there - I remember reading about legions of people who ran up hundreds of $$$ on their cell phone bills through SMS messages and didn't realize they were paying by the message.

Just because you have good sense doesn't mean there won't be a sucker born the next minute.
 
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ParishYoung

macrumors 6502a
Mar 18, 2008
644
5
Bristol, South West UK
I thought it was pretty good timing (for me at least)

I'm currently Roaming in America from the Uk and had the feature disabled.

While out walking somewhere I needed to know how to get back to my motel so I enabled data and then used the maps feature, but it couldn't find me so had to ask in a garage anyway. Quickly checked my email (no new ones) and updated Facebook status then put the phone back in my pocket.

Foolishly I did not disable the Roaming Data again. Less than 24 hours later my network (Orange UK) sent me a text saying I had used "5Mb of Roaming Data"!!!! I have no idea how this happened as I only performed the above.

While in the motel in the evening I used the free Wifi service.

It's crazy to think that the iPhone is capable to sending / reciving 5Mb in 24 hours by itself. So a warning like this article is probably a good thing, especially due to the number of people getting the new iPhone 3G. There will be a whole heap of the customers with the first gen one upgrading, plus with the new pricing there will be even more people getting one.

Just my 2 cents / pence
 
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