APPPA Expresses Concern over a Ruling by FCC's Wireline Competition Bureau

By Ashok Bindra January 24, 2013

The American PrePaid Phonecall Association (APPPA) has expressed concern over the impact on consumers of a ruling by Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Wireline Competition Bureau (Bureau) regarding pay phone charges to prepaid service providers. However, FCC is still considering whether to uphold the Bureau ruling, which gives pay phone providers the right to bill prepaid service providers for calls made from their phones, even if required identification information was not passed to the prepaid provider.

APPPA is most concerned about this ruling because it could apply retroactively, even if the required signals were not received from the pay phone.

In a statement, Gene Retske, executive director of APPPA, said, "If this ruling is affirmed by the full Commission, the impact will be the greatest on those who can afford it the least." He added, "Prepaid providers will have to pay for calls long after their ability to appropriately charge the customer who made the call."

While the issue is mired in technical and legal language, Retske thinks that if it is affirmed, the ruling will have the net effect of limiting access to payphones by the least affluent consumers. "This ruling will disproportionately impact the very consumer who needs access to discounted, high value international long distance services," noted Retske.

Commenting on this ruling, the owner of one prepaid calling company, Ray Valme, of Dial World Communications said that the average payphone charge is about $0.99 per call when using a prepaid phone card. He said that carriers would then have to budget an additional amount for retroactive payphone charges and build them into their ongoing payphone fee.

"Because prepaid phone service is sold through merchants, today's $0.99 payphone fee could increase to as much as $1.39 on a $5 calling card that affects 28 percent of the value, on a $3 calling card. That is 46 percent of the value," asserted Valme.

APPPA said that it is continuing to work with the FCC to resolve this issue in favor of the industry and its consumers.




Edited by Rich Steeves

TechZone360 Contributor

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
Related Articles

Super Bowl Sunday - Game on for TV Everywhere

By: Bob Wallace    1/22/2015

NBCUniversal is using the largest annual live sports viewing stage - the Super Bowl - to pitch consumers the benefit of a cable TV subscription - by o…

Read More

Corporate Video Usage Widens and Gets Creative

By: Tara Seals    1/22/2015

At least 40 percent of organizations that use real-time video applications are employing it in more than a dozen use cases.

Read More

Eat Your Heart Out Apple: Dell Tablet to Film Hollywood Movie

By: Rob Enderle    1/19/2015

I don't mean the tablet will be used in the film, I mean it will be used as the camera to create the movie. The tablet in question is the Dell Venue 8…

Read More

Obama Administration Wants To Crack Down On Fruits Of Hacking

By: Oliver VanDervoort    1/19/2015

The law also makes it a felony to traffic in information such as passwords and trafficking will now include posting a link. Basically, the new law wou…

Read More

OneWeb Satellite Broadband Venture Secures Funding, Generates Questions

By: Doug Mohney    1/16/2015

Will the world be surrounded by the largest satellite network ever created? OneWeb, formerly known as WorldVu Satellites, secured an undisclosed amoun…

Read More