Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Cheap ISP or Free ISP?

Jeez, it's hard to please some people. Where did everyone get the idea that everything is free for ever more ? And that if the free stuff isn't free enough or slick enough then you get the chance to whine like a slapped....
Sure, the "free" concept was a great marketing idea but EVERYTHING COSTS SOMEBODY SOMETHING!!!. Even if you manage to scrounge every facility and piece of kit and service, it takes time to get that all together, and time is money.

So why am I rattling on? Well I work in the "Free ISP" field in the UK. It's a model that developed some few years ago by the Dixons group who started Freeserve (now Wannadoo) and some smaller players like ConnectFree (Now owned by Tiscali). The principle was so simple it was brilliant. Instead of charging £15 a month subscription fee , let your customers have everything for free but leverage a margin from the Telco who provided the dial up number. The dial up number was most likely an 0845 number which is classed as a local rate call wherever you are in the UK. The more minutes your subscribers were online, the greater margin you could leverage from the Telco. Great everyone is a winner. Telco makes money they never thought of. ISP makes money due to increased volume offsetrting the revenue foregone from subscription fees and the customer spends money only on thetime that they were online and they get free webspace, free email accounts, free webmail and so on. It's a nice and fair equation. It's the PAYG or Pay as You Go model.

But you wouldn't believe how much people grumble about anything. They moan because they can't just use webamail and not dial up so that we give them someting for absolutely nothing. They moan when they find out that the PC has been mysteriously accesssed late and night and there's now a porn dialler on the system. We ask whether they've by any chance got a teenage son and they just can't see the relevance. And so on

Anyhow thisis the sort of thing that we do:

Free ISP
Free Internet Access

Are you a whinging Customer? Then step up to the mark...

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