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BT rolls back the night

Early to bed? Bill's gonna rise

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BT has shifted night time by an hour, deciding that peak rate should run from 0700 to 1900, rather than the six-to-six with which we're all familiar.

It seems people are working later, or at least making calls later, which has prompted the shift in the time at which calling rates drop, though BT's not alone in defining evening as starting at seven.

Few of the mobile operators bother with timed rates these days, their tariffs are complicated enough without making them time-dependent. But several other fixed operators define evening as starting at seven, and some even shave an hour off night time with peak rate kicking in at six in the morning.

For those of us who remember hanging round the house phone waiting for six to phone mates at the cheaper rate, it would mean waiting another hour - if we didn't all have mobiles these days.

For the companies whose working day extends into the early evening, it means bigger phone bills, which is no doubt the point. But if you're the kind of person who leaps up before six in the morning to make low-cost calls to other insomniacs, then you'll appreciate the additional hour in bed. ®

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