In an apparent bid to have more mobile subscribers using the freshly launched Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS), Econet has slashed tariffs for the service by more than half, from US 15 cents to just 6 cents. The country’s largest telecoms firm made the announcement yesterday to customers via an SMS which read:
Good News: MMS tariffs reduced for your convenience, now you can share your photos & videos from as little as 6c. Let’s share the fun.
Whether this will drive droves of subscribers to service or not is of course not clear yet. We imagine though that if 15 cents a message was too much, the 60% reduction won’t mean much to many. In fact we’ll go ahead and just say the price tag itself is not the problem here; the problem is pricing data in units of messages sent from one subscriber to another.
6 cents an MMS is actually cheaper than, say, uploading a 1 megabyte photo to Facebook. But most subscribers don’t look at it that way. Mobile data users don’t view internet data in price-tagged blocks of messages. The way SMS and MMS work that is. Once they connect, most people actually feel WhatsApp transmits their messages for free. It’s the same way people consider Skype to Skype calls free.
So far Econet hasn’t released any MMS usage stats and usually that’s a sign there’s nothing impressive to talk about. It’ll be interesting to see if this latest move changes things for the better significantly.
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