T-Mobile in court over Truphone call blocks
Monday judgement expected on injunction request
Truphone got its hour in court yesterday, though judgement in the case - the VoIP operator has applied for an interim injunction to stop T-Mobile blocking its customers from dialling Truphone numbers - is not expected until Monday morning.
The suit alleges (pdf) that even though Truphone has been issued a range of mobile numbers (in the 079788 range), T-Mobile is abusing a position of market dominance - its control over its own network - and indulging in anti-competitive behaviour by refusing to connect calls to Truphone subscribers.
In its response (pdf), T-Mobile contends that there is no refusal to supply or purchase, merely a commercial dispute over the terms involved, and that therefore the whole thing is outside the court's remit.
However, Truphone claims that T-Mobile took the decision to block its numbers as a matter of policy, not finance. It points out that while T-Mobile argues that it has not refused to connect outright, but merely refused to pay the "excessive" interconnection fees demanded by Truphone, the other UK mobile network operators have all agreed to interconnect at Truphone's rates.
The case, in the Chancery Division of the High Court, was heard by a judge at the Royal Courts of Justice, London.®
Verdict out, in Truphones favour...
Will make some waves?
Coercion by the regulator.
"...cannot expect the Mobile Network Operators to allow any of their customers to bypass their means of generating revenues..."
Not voluntarily, no, which is why the regulator had to get coercive about reasonable provision of MAC codes to allow number transferability between providers. The companies involved will always try and lock users into their own charges and that's why the regulator exists: to curtail obvious abuses of dominant market positions.
I agree with most of the above comments, being a T-Mobile customer and having them randomly charge me for calls which should be included in my call plan, I'm really upset with them for trying to charge me when using a service that allows me to call my friend who's moved abroad.
The sooner my contract runs out the better, the network's rubbish too, frequently get messages saying emergency calls only and limited service. I can't even log onto their website properly, shabby operation all round really.