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8ta goes per-second

8ta yesterday announced that all new pre-paid customers will be billed on a per-second structure, while still taking advantage of the service provider’s pre-paid benefits.

Competitively priced, this new billing option enables customers to pay pro-rata at a per second rate for the duration of the call, thus making per-second billing a cheaper option for subscribers who make shorter duration calls on a regular basis.

8ta’s per-second billed pre-paid option offers attractive rates of R1.12 per minute for off peak calls and R2.75 per minute for peak time calls. The per-second billing rate is applicable from the first second of the call. This will be effective from 15 May 2011.

Unlike some other networks that charge a higher off-peak rate for calls to competitor networks, 8ta’s customers are charged a low R1.12 off-peak rate regardless of the network called. Peak time calls will be charged R2.75 per minute to any network as well.

This new tariff plan offers more value when customers call a fixed line number. Priced at 65 cents per minute, and billed per second, this all day tariff is the lowest for a pre-paid mobile originated call.

In addition, all pre-paid bonus offerings, which have been available since the launch of 8ta’s services, remain available to per-second billed subscribers. As such, customers will still earn free outgoing minutes when receiving incoming calls from any local mobile network. These minutes earned can be used to call any mobile or fixed line network in South Africa. Also, for every five SMS’s sent customers receive 50 free SMS’s to use that same day.

While this option will become the standard rate for customers that have acquired 8ta SIM cards, and have completed the RICA registration process, customers may opt for the flat rate of R1.50 per-minute billing structure instead. Furthermore, pre-paid customers currently on per-minute billing can opt to change to per-second billing as well.

Subscribers have the option of switching between per-minute and per-second billing once every month by simply calling 8ta’s Customer Care on 081180 to request a change.

Amith Maharaj, Managing Executive for 8ta says, ‚8ta’s new per-second pre-paid tariff empowers customers to choose a billing option that best suits them. ‚

‚Simplicity while retaining value remains a strategic imperative for 8ta, as we are still the only operator to reward customers with free daily SMS’s as well as free minutes just for receiving calls,‚ he continued.

Pre-paid airtime can also be used to purchase 8ta data bundles of various sizes ranging from R50 for a 100MB bundle up to R250 for a 1GB bundle. 8ta pre-paid airtime can be used to purchase BlackBerry Internet Service on a month to month basis at R59 per month.

Since launch 8ta has rapidly increased its airtime outlets to various retail chains and convenience stores making 8ta airtime now available at more than 74 000 points of sale in South Africa. Added to this 8ta has made scratch card vouchers available for sale at corner cafes, spaza shops and informal vendors.

Further to the existing formal and informal footprint, digital channels including and FNB cellphone banking have been introduced.

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