IoT Blog
IoT Blog

Roaming Charges Hit the Road in Europe

As of Thursday, June 15, 2017, European cellular customers can enjoy “roam-like-at-home” service no matter how many borders they cross and countries they visit. After a decade of discussions, representatives of the European Parliament, the Council, and the Commission have agreed on a flat rate for wholesale roaming markets across cellular networks within the European Union (EU). This means that a cellular customer’s home service provider plan will apply across all EU countries, with no extra service charges added when using a network owned by a competitive or out-of-country provider.

Sierra Wireless welcomes this change, and expects it will lead to an increase in the rate of devices attaching to cellular networks. Europe has been well-known for its steep roaming tariffs, which ultimately act as a barrier to widespread usage. With a roam-like-at-home tariff structure, users on both monthly subscription plans and/or pre-paid SIMs can roam to other countries without any significant changes to their usage patterns. That’s because customers travelling throughout the EU will be able to call, send SMS, and browse the Internet on their mobile devices at the same price they pay at home. The new agreement makes roam-like-at-home sustainable for people and businesses, encouraging customers to increase use of smart phones and other mobile data devices, such as PCs with integrated cellular modules.

Under the new EU regulations, users who have a mobile operator contract that includes roaming services will automatically be considered to have a roam-like-at-home contract. The default option for all new mobile contracts with roaming services will also be roam-like-at-home. These conditions apply as long as the customer uses his/her mobile phone more at home than abroad.

For more details, please see the latest announcement about the new wholesale roaming charges from the European Commission.