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UAE to Impose Cap on Mobile Data Charges

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The UAE's telecoms regulator has ordered the country's two mobile networks to impose a cap on mobile data bundles to prevent customers being hit by unexpectedly high bills.

The TRA said that the move would protect consumers from "bill shock".

Under the regulation, consumers who purchase a bundle of mobile data will have to explicitly ask for more if their allowance is used up, rather than being able to use more bandwidth without being aware of the now extra costs being imposed.

"We are concerned with the potential for consumers to receive larger-than-expected charges for their out-of-bundle mobile data usage. We acknowledge that both Etisalat and du have provided various tools to enable their customers to monitor their data usage and manage their costs. However, we note that not all consumers use such tools. It is also inherently difficult to estimate how much data is actually being consumed while, for example, browsing the internet or sending e-mails," says Hamad Obaid Al Mansoori, Director General, TRA.

The TRA has also asked the two mobile networks, Etisalat and du to introduce tariffs that charge lower rates for over bundle data than the rates charged for no bundle data.

"Consumers may not be aware of the actual costs associated with such mobile data usage and this could lead to 'bill shock.' We aim to address the issue once and for all through this new directive," Al Mansoori added.

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Tags: tra  United Arab Emirates