Thursday, April 24, 2008

Globe offers time-based internet browsing....

PhotobucketGlobe now offers its subscribers, both prepaid and postpaid, the option of choosing either per kilobyte charging (P0.15/KB) or time-based charging (P5/15 minutes) for its mobile internet services.

This is good news to Globe subscribers looking for an affordable way to surf the net via their mobile phones.

I'm a Globe subscriber, but I have a prepaid Smart mobile phone solely for the purpose of mobile web browsing. Smart offers mobile browsing via GPRS/3G at a rate of P10 per 30 minutes. Globe used to offer only per kilobyte charging at P0.15 per kilobyte, and if you're browsing one of those websites with lots of text, graphics or multimedia, billing charges can really add up.

While time-based charging is long overdue for Globe, after reading the fine print, I think I'll be sticking with Smart for my mobile browsing needs. While Globe presumably offers faster connections at up to HSDPA or 3.5G speeds (Smart only supports up to 3G speeds), and seemingly similar pricing schemes at P5 per 15 minutes, Globe doesn't charge per 15 minute block, unlike Smart which charges per 30 minute block. What this means is that if you log on the internet using your Globe mobile and you're disconnected even before your 15 minutes are up, reconnecting will cost you another P5. Smart charges in 30 minute blocks, so if you log in via Smart and get disconnected, reconnecting will not cost you as long as you reconnect within 30 minutes of your initial connection. If you reconnect more than 30 minutes after your initial connection, you're charged P10 for a fresh 30 minute block.

Compare for yourself:

From Globe's website:


*Time Browsing Rate is open to Globe Prepaid, Postpaid Consumer Accounts, SME and Corporate accounts. Not applicable to subscribers on Data Plans (i.e. Visibility). Time Browsing rate effective upon receipt of text confirmation. Succeeding connections will be charged P5 for 15 minutes. If disconnected within the 15 minutes, reconnection will be considered a new session charged at P5. No refund will be made if disconnected before the 15mins are up. Applicable to browsing within the Philippines only.


From Smart's website:


You will be charged P10 for every 30 minutes. To illustrate the 30-minute block metering, example:

Scenario 1:

Anna connects to the internet at 8:30, then disconnects at 8:50 (total of 20 minutes) -> consumption is already rounded off to 30 minutes (note: this is the first 30-minute block)

Scenario 2:

Anna connects to the internet at 8:30, then disconnects at 8:50 (total of 20 minutes), then reconnects again at 8:55 up to 9:00. (total of 5 minutes). Consumption is only counted as one block of 30-minute since this is within the first 30-minute block.

Scenario 3:

Anna connects to the internet at 8:30, then disconnects at 8:50 (total of 20 minutes), then reconnects again at 8:55 up to 9:05 (total of 10 minutes) -> consumption is already counted as two (2) blocks of 30-minutes, wherein:

usage from 8:30 to 8:50, then 8:55 to 9:00 is for the first 30-minute block (note: that this is the first 30-minute block)
usage from 9:01 to 9:05 is for the second 30-minute block.


All in all, Globe's offering may not be perfect, but is still a welcome change from their archaic per kilobyte system. Whether it's right for you, or whether or not it's a better deal than what Smart is offering, you decide.

It's a good thing market competition is still alive and kicking.

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