LIME’s GM puts advertised, actual rates to the test
August 16, 2013

LIME’s GM puts advertised, actual rates to the test

The phrase “one good turn deserves another” was taken to a new level this week, as officials at communications provider LIME conducted tests to prove that their market rates were the same as advertised.{{more}}

Two weeks ago, LIME’s General Manager Leslie Jack spearheaded the demonstration of a rate test to the media, during which he accused mobile competitor Digicel of charging more for calls, than what was advertised.

At that time, the tests showed differences between Digicel’s advertised and actual rates, but LIME did not perform a demonstration on their own rates.

This week, Jack put the LIME advertised and actual rates in focus.

The test showed that a sixty-one second call from a LIME mobile to a Digicel handset cost 61 cents, and a LIME to LIME mobile call lasting sixty seconds cost 60 cents, prompting Jack to announce that his network charged one cent per minute.

Jack told the public that this test was done in response to an August 9 letter from the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (NTRC), which indicated that differences were discovered in actual and advertised rates of both providers.

Jack had written to the regulatory body earlier, asking them to look into his allegations, that Digicel was “cheating” its customers.

He said that the differences uncovered by the NTRC on LIME calls occurred because the one minute calls may have gone over by about half a second, which would be calculated as a full second.

“LIME to Digicel, they suggested that we are charging one cent more. They suggested that we are charging one cent more from LIME to fixed line, one cent more from LIME to LIME…. They’re suggesting that LIME to LIME peak, we are charging two cents more….” Jack said.

“The differential there though is that you cannot charge a half a second, you are going to bill a second…. So if you spend seconds and a half second a call, it’s going to be charged at 61 seconds,” Jack pointed out.

Jack said that in the case of Digicel, the NTRC confirmed there were differences as high as two to four cents, as recorded in their earlier tests, which he said the competitor would have a hard time explaining.

“What I would like to know is how Digicel rates could be three and four cents more. That is not a half second billing issue… so that for me is cause for concern.

“When you reach three and four cents difference, that for me, you really need to look in to.”

Jack also pointed out that the current campaign by his company has encouraged a number of people to switch networks, and stated that LIME customers are experiencing savings where it matters.

“I believe we have the interest of the people of St Vincent and the Grenadines at heart, that’s why we thought it necessary to go to the public then and we coming to the public now to say this is what LIME is doing… and it’s really up to the public to decide whether or not they want to continue using a network that is taking advantage of them by charging excessively higher rates than another network altogether.

“What I do know is this: the people of St Vincent and the Grenadines, especially in these hard economic times, are looking for lower rates… so we have seen people moving from Digicel on to LIME and I am quite sure we will continue to see that, because LIME is offering value that you can feel in your pockets.

Both LIME and Digicel are required by the NTRC to respond to its letter by August 16.(JJ)