Nov 7, 2008

Sun Cellular, Cellphones and Rip-offs

One of my friends has been receiving unwanted messages from some people. What makes it more irritating is that in America, you pay to receive text messages. You read that right. The phone companies charges both the sender and receiver. In case you are wondering, phone companies charge both ways for phone calls, too. Whether you are the caller or the call-ee.

I was very much surprised when I learned about how cellphone companies here in the US charge their clients. See, in the Philippines, cellphone companies only charge the caller and the texter. It is free to receive calls and text messages. And rightfully so, I think.

In the Philippines, most people I know have prepaid accounts. Mostly because it is a pain in the rear to get approved for a postpaid line. This is a very good scheme for the cellphone companies. They know they are getting paid. You can't make phone calls or send text messages when your prepaid credits (they call it load) run out. But you can receive calls and text messages.

One of the most wonderful things I discovered on my last trip is Sun Cellular. I love this phone company! For Php100 (about USD2.50), you get unlimited calls and text to any other Sun Cellular subscriber for 5 whole days. So, in the Philippines, where everyone claims to be poor and having to live below poverty, quite a number of people have two cellphones. One of which is with Sun Cellular. The only downside to this company is that network signal is not available everywhere. Luckily, I get very good reception in my hometown and in Cebu City. Not a problem for me at all.

Cellphones are now cheaper, too. USD100 will get you a nice compact colored phone with built-in camera and fm player. I got this phone (see picture) for PHP4300 - less than USD100. Those things were at least USD300 about two years ago. Hurray for cheap cellphones!

BTW, AT&T works in the Philippines but you get charged ridiculous amounts of money. However, it is a good backup to have. It is very useful if you need to take phone calls through your US number. For those of you who have iphones, make sure to turn data services off when roaming internationally or you'd get charged an arm, a leg, and quite possibly your first-born child.

1 comment:

dr tes said...

my second phone is a Sun fone, a must for the clinic, i paid only P150 per month, unli calls and tex. pwerte ka sulit!