Orange contract price hike angers subscribers
Orange has announced a price hike on UK pay monthly contracts, with fees rising by 4.34 per cent. Customers are not impressed.
"Due to recent increases in inflation, we will be increasing the price of our monthly tariff plans by 4.34 per cent from the 8 January 2012," the company told customers this week.
However, "call, text and data rates will not be changing", the operator pledged.
"The increase in the price plan charges is less than the 5.4 per cent rate of inflation as measured by the Retail Price Index (RPI) in October 2011," a company spokesman told Reg Hardware.
"Our pay monthly terms and conditions allow us to increase charges by up to the RPI figure in any 12-month period."
Customers on £15 a month will now pay £15.64, while those on £20 each month are up to £20.86.
There are exceptions, though. Those who took new price plans from September onwards will not experience a change because the plan had already taken into account inflationary rises, Orange said.
Pay-As-You-Go, Orange Home, SIM-only customers, Mobile Broadband and Business customers will not face the increase, either.
The one hope for affected users is Ofcom. The regulator's rules say any change in contract must not only be made clear to customers in plenty of time, but must also come with a free opt-out option.
Orange insists that this rule does not apply because the increase was catered for within existing contract Ts&Cs.
We eagerly await Ofcom's pronouncement on the matter. ®
Orange are money scamming cons
Why does Orange need to increase the price for those already in a contract? People signed up for a contract for 12, 18 or 24 months with the intention that the price they signed up was what they keep paying. If Orange want to increase the price, then they should apply it to those signing up for a new contract only. Orange should take into account inflation costs into the pricing of their contracts so it is not an issue. When people come out of contract and upgrade, they can then offer the new pricing. Those who come out of contract and do not upgrade will be on a monthly rolling basis. However, Orange won't be subsidising the cost of a new handset for those users so that'll more than cover the inflation costs as the customer will be paying full line rental without the benefit of a subsidised handset.
I will not be joining Orange in future if they try to con even more money out of their customers.
Limited Choice, Poor Contracts
Unfortunately you only have the option of Vodafone or O2 if you dont choose Orange (or 3 if you can trust the service to deliver a signal).
I think you can see a pattern here, pretty much every kind of large monopolistic business model always comes down to about 3-4 big players who never really try to compete with each other as that only hurts the bottom line. Once you get to that position you as a consumer are stuck with a limited number of similar offerings and generally weighted terms and conditions against the consumer.
I think a long term contract should not allow price rises, period. How can you judge a contract when each network can choose to levy a price rise at set points. I suppose we should be gratful that they didn't levy the full RPI % increase.Sigh...
"Orange insists that this rule does not apply because the increase was catered for within existing contract Ts&Cs."
I'm pretty sure that they cannot opt out of Ofcom regulations with their T&C's, and that the Ofcom requirement takes precedence. If their T&C's had said that they could increase prices up to 10x RPI per year without giving customers the ability to opt out, would that be ok?
I'm sure they will be let off though, because they are only breaking regulations 'just a little bit'.
My contract with Orange is due for renewal almost exactly when these changes were being pushed through, so I thought the price change was just for me at first.