Vodafone has rejected a government-commissioned report into international roaming charges for mobile phones. Conducted by KPMG Australia, the report concludes that international roaming charges are unreasonably high, citing various comparisons between local carriers and their international counterparts.
The report highlights four key issues regarding current international roaming pricing and their effect on the Australian mobile market:
- Consumers and regulators believe that the price of international mobile roaming is excessive;
- Numerous technical studies have concluded that mobile roaming retail margins are very high;
- There is a lack of consumer clarity around mobile roaming plans and prices; and
- There are limited market incentives for roaming prices to decrease.
In a statement released today, Vodafone Australia claimed that the report is selectively modelled on out-of-date information and does not factor in the telco's recently released Vodafone Traveller and Roaming Data Bundles.
The new bundles, which were launched on July 21, revise the telco's model for international roaming charges and offers tiered pricing based on four global zones. Vodafone's roaming data pricing has also been revised, with the telco offering 25MB of international data for $49 per month and 120MB of data for $199 per month.
The report was commissioned by the House of Representatives Parliamentary Inquiry on International Mobile Roaming on 29 May. It is scheduled to be reviewed by Federal Parliament on 15. The report was released on 19 June, a month before Vodafone released its revised plans.