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Supanet runs with pre-paid Net access vouchers

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Supanet is to launch a pre-paid voucher service for Net users aimed at people looking to control the cost of their Net use.

The pre-pay card works the same as the pre-pay vouchers that have become so popular among mobile phone users.

Burnley-based Supanet started trialling the service at Preston College earlier this week and intends to introduce it to the rest of the country within the next couple of weeks.

To use the service, users simply buy a card up to a value of £5, £10 or £20 before scratching off a panel to reveal a unique identity number.

This number can then be entered into the supanet voucher Web site where it automatically tops-up a user's account. It means they can access the Net using an 0800 number so that the phone line they use incurs no charges.

Access costs 3.95p per minute during the day and 2p a minute at all other times.

It's thought the scheme will prove particularly popular with people who don't have access to credit or debit cards, the usual way to pay for Net access either by flat-rate subscription or via a phone bill.

For this initiative to succeed, though, the top-up vouchers must become widely available.

Paul Flood, Commercial Director at Supanet, said he is talks with a number of different potential distributors but declined to say which until commercial negotiations had been completed.

But he said they would be available in 137 Time Computer stores from next week.

Supanet says it has grown its customer base from 830,000 to one million users over the last six months.

It expects that the new voucher scheme will attract some 10,000 users within the next four months. ®

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