Wed, Oct 01, 2008 - Page 12 News List

Taiwan Mobile to offer low rates for calls to land lines


In an attempt to spur dwindling revenue growth, Taiwan Mobile Co (台灣大哥大) yesterday unveiled a discount package for mobile users making calls to land lines.

The nation’s second-largest telecom operator said it hoped to squeeze revenue from this new area by encouraging mobile subscribers to make calls to land lines, chief operating officer Cliff Lai (賴弦五) said.

“This is a new source of revenue,” Lai said. “Truth is, people rarely make calls to fixed-line numbers because of the high rates. Now we are offering quite a low rate for the service.”


The company aims to receive an additional 4,000 to 5,000 users a month following the launch of the new rates, Lai said.

Taiwan Mobile now brings in about 80,000 to 90,000 new users a month.

Taiwan Mobile said August sales rose 1 percent to NT$5.88 billion (US$182.6 million) from a year ago, thanks to rising new subscriptions following the launch of HTC Corp’s (宏達電) Touch Diamond phone.

“We also hope this new rate plan will help mobile users save money at a time when the nation’s economy is slowing down,” Lai said.

Taiwan Mobile subscribers will pay NT$1.5 every three minutes with a minimal charge of NT$299 a month, compared with the NT$6 to NT$8 per three minutes it charges users subscribing to other rate packages.


Taiwan Mobile has 6.22 million mobile users. The company also plans to introduce a new BlackBerry phone from Research in Motion on Oct. 10 that would be the first BlackBerry enabling traditional Chinese input.

Smaller rival Far EasTone Telecommunications Co (遠傳電信) plans to introduce a new service with HTC smartphones by the end of the year after winning a new subscription by selling 10,000 HTC Touch Pro phones.

Far EasTone said it did not plan to trim handset purchasing plans this year as it has not seen signs indicating slowing demand, despite the weakening economy. However, the company said it may buy more middle to-low end handsets.

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