Operators: News and curiosities

The "Tourist" service, changes in the "Caring" (MTS) tariff plan, "Gudok" with its "Substitutes", "Related balance", MMS on Smeshariki and other news, already pretty annoying to everyone.

“Tourist” in Ukraine

Or in Ukraine? No matter how you write, you will not get offended. Probably, for reasons of political correctness and out of harm's way, one should write “on the territory of the sovereign state of Ukraine”, so no one will find fault with it. We read the description of the new MTS promotional service here, quotes:

“MTS continues to develop the affordable roaming program and reduces roaming tariffs in Ukraine to 3 rubles. Have you decided to go on holiday to Ukraine this year? Before the trip, activate the "Tourist" service and call any MTS-Russia numbers and receive any calls at a price of 3 rubles per minute after the 1st minute of the call. The cost of the first minute of conversation is 33 rubles. The service can be connected from June 20 to September 30, 2009 for a period of 14 days. Preferential tariffs are valid from the moment of connection of the service. Service connection fee 150 rub. VAT included. There is no subscription fee. You will be able to use the offer in roaming only if the "International and national roaming" and "International access" services are activated. The offer is valid only when you are in the MTS-Ukraine (UMC) network, the name of the network on the phone display is MTS UKR, UMC UA, UKR 01, 255 01.

The new service successfully implemented three modern trends in cellular marketing at once:

  • Charging a one-time discount fee in the form of a “service connection cost”. It is important from the point of view of consumer psychology: the one who paid the discount in advance will certainly talk and bring income to the operator, otherwise why would they spend money?
  • Increasingly active exploitation of a disguised connection fee, referred to as the "cost of the first minute of a call." It's too tempting to pass up. Indeed: it is impossible to call directly from the second minute for technical reasons, but it is very possible to indicate in advertising the price of a minute starting from the second. And in particularly outstanding cases of advertising cunning, even with the fifth or sixth, if only the clarification in small print was present somewhere in the corner of the poster.
  • Rigid fixation of the discount period. The phrase "Subscriber fee is not charged" warms the tender soul of the subscriber, at the same time allowing the operator to take this same monthly fee in advance for the entire period of the discount. In the end, everyone is satisfied and happy.

About a year ago, MTS reduced the cost of a roaming minute in Ukraine by a ruble (from 26 to 25 rubles in the MTS group of companies in the CIS), while "under the guise" of this case, they sharply increased the rest of the roaming rates. Naturally, the same decrease in prices for the ruble was advertised, our material can be read here. Then, “in the development of the affordable roaming and tariff reduction program” ©, the program developed towards the inclusion of the MTS-CIS group of companies in the general list of countries. And the “reduction of tariffs”, respectively, materialized in the form of a price change from 25 rubles per minute. to the current 59 rubles / min. A kind of small optimization overhead to simplify perception. It is clear that certain vindictive individuals were offended by such optimization, and the “Close Countries” service was created especially for them, returning the previous 25 rubles per minute. for a symbolic one-time fee of 90 rubles. The circle is closed, people “in the know” are satisfied, the rest pay 59 rubles each. in a minute. At press conferences, the company's management does not get tired of repeating that exorbitantly high roaming prices are caused by the greed of foreign partners. In fact, do not pay extra for the calls of subscribers from your own pocket? It must be assumed that the foreign partner represented by MTS-Ukraine agreed to meet the needs of his colleague MTS-Russia, which made it possible to reduce the price of the first minute from the previous 25 to 33 rubles and to 3 rubles starting from the second as part of the Tourist service.

This was a lyrical digression and a brief history of the issue, now about some features of the action.

  • Important! The "Tourist" discount (33 rubles for the first minute, 3 rubles for all subsequent minutes) is valid for all incoming calls, for outgoing calls only when calling to MTS-Russia phones.
  • The cost of obtaining a discount is 150 rubles, it is completely removed when the service is activated. The discount is valid for 14 days from the date of activation.
  • Service connection - by USSD-command or via Internet assistant. The USSD-command option looks more preferable, as it allows you to connect a discount already from the territory of Ukraine and “win” an extra day this way.
  • For longer trips, the service can be activated again, the next 14 days of the discount will be counted from the moment of the second connection.
  • The "Tourist" discount is not summed up with the "Nearby countries" discount, with the "Tourist" connected, all outgoing calls except for calls to MTS-Russia are charged at 59 rubles per minute. After the expiration of the 14-day period of validity of the "Tourist", a single billing of 25 rubles per minute is returned. to all incoming, as well as outgoing local calls and calls to Russia (with the Close Countries service activated).
  • The cost of an SMS message with the "Tourist" discount enabled is 15 rubles, GPRS traffic (60 Kb) is 30 rubles. With the connected service "Close countries" - 7 rubles. and 18 rubles. respectively.
  • Activation of the "Tourist" service is possible until September 30 inclusive. Accordingly, the discount connected on September 30 will be valid until October 14.
  • The warning about the discount only when in the MTS-Ukraine network should not worry us, for MTS subscribers the inability to register in the Ukrainian networks of competitors is provided by technical means.

Caregiver Update

We read the important news about the change in the parameters of the Caring tariff here, and our review of the tariff can be found here. Quote from the news:

“From July 1, 2009, the procedure for connecting and switching to the “Caring” tariff is simplified - now you can connect your parents and grandparents to this tariff plan or transfer it to it without presenting a pension certificate.

When served on the "Caring" tariff plan, your parents and grandparents can receive bonus minutes for incoming calls from "favorite" numbers. For every five minutes of incoming calls, one bonus minute is awarded. Starting July 1, 2009, the monthly zeroing of bonus accumulations is cancelled. Within one day, you can accumulate no more than 10 bonus minutes.

How did this rather nondescript tariff turn out to be good for the operator, and why did they suddenly decide to “optimize” it in a good way for users? Quote from our description:

“The tariff is niche and semi-closed, connection or transition is possible only upon presentation of a pension certificate. By themselves, the tariff parameters can hardly be considered super-preferential, but there is a bonus for incoming calls and free "favorite numbers". For rare and few callers in a narrow family circle, the tariff is not so bad, especially in light of the new MTS tariff trends.

It is possible that the improvement of the tariff parameters provoked the popularity of the Beeline Mobile Pensioner tariff plan. In general, "Mobile Pensioner" looks more attractive due to its versatility, and MTS could take care of increasing the competitiveness of its "brainchild". Did it work?

Despite the sad characteristics of "Caring" (all calls except on-net for 5 rubles/min.) and its niche nature, this offer has two valuable features: incoming calls from "Favorite" numbers are "rewarded" with bonus seconds; you can connect up to five "Favorite" numbers, and up to three numbers without a subscription fee. For 5 minutes of incoming calls from "Favorite" numbers, a "Caring" subscriber receives 1 minute of outgoing calls to any MTS numbers within his region. True, the bonus accumulator is accumulated per second, i.e., for example, 15 short calls of 20 seconds each to "Caring" will be billed as a full-fledged 15 minutes of outgoing calls, but the owner of "Caring" will be given only 1 bonus minute.

The current tariff upgrade cancels the "burning" of accumulated bonuses at the end of the month, this important change increases the attractiveness of the tariff. Although in general, "Caring" still remains a narrow niche offer for pensioners who rarely use the phone. As for the simplification of connection conditions (declared refusal from the mandatory presentation of a pension certificate), I have not yet been able to find out a new connection mechanism either through the contact center or through the operator's press service. Indeed, a person can be a pensioner at the age of 30. In general, we will wait until July 1 and find out everything.

News "in the subject" - the service "Kindred balance", which should soon materialize in the Moscow region. If it materializes. The news announcement of June 1 can be read here, quote:

“MTS Company expands the possibilities of the “Favorite Number” service. Very soon you will be able to share the secret with your loved ones. Stay tuned!"

It is a pity that they did not write how long we should "follow the news". Month? Year? As far as I understand, we are talking about the ability to control the balance of the personal account on "Favorite numbers". For us, the service is not very interesting: since you are reading this text, you can just as well check the balance of a child or grandparents through an Internet assistant. But as an additional functionality - very good. Similar services are already operating in other regions, you can find, for example, here.

QIWI/Comstar: are the cute ones scolding - just having fun?

Even before the commercial launch of the WiMax network, Comstar was actively interested in the organization of payment. The initial choice of options did not look very encouraging: e-port payment terminals or one of the Comstar offices. For a long time they promised to start accepting payments through QIWI terminals, and now, finally, the long-awaited event has happened.

True, I personally have not yet been able to pay for Comstr services via QIWI, but in principle the payment service has been launched, the news has been published and press releases have been sent out. And that the payment does not go through and the personal account system “does not see point-blank”, so maybe this is my karma. But unexpectedly, I discovered a nice new feature in the QIWI payment service: in case of payment failure due to a technical error, the system carefully sends an SMS message to the mobile phone number registered in the "Personal Account".

Price increase for MMS and ringer replacement

The sad news about the rise in price of MMS messages on the popular "children's" tariff plan "Smeshariki" is posted in the "press releases" section, read here. Quote:

“The cost of an MMS sent to numbers of Russian mobile operators for Smeshariki and Contact tariff plans will be 6 rubles from 06/30/2009. with VAT per message.

Until June 30, the cost of MMS messages on Smeshariki is 1 ruble. per message, at a special tariff "Contact" for the hearing impaired - 4.50 rubles. Children are the flowers of life, and you know how much bouquets are now, the pleasure is not cheap. But why did they offend the hearing-impaired, whose life is already far from sugar? Yes, and the current 4.50 rubles. for MMS, with all the desire, you can’t call it a charitable price. For reference: a similar MTS service "SMS World" provides a preferential rate for sending MMS messages: 1.95 rubles. for an MMS message within the network and 5.50 rubles. for an MMS message to other operators.

So I got to "Change the horn" in the Try & Buy mode, I'm waiting with interest for the appearance of "Live Balance". If you believe the SMS warnings sent, the service connected without my initiative should fall off on its own in 14 days, without causing me any financial losses and moral suffering. I won’t comment yet, I’ll wait a few more days until the wonderful service shuts down.

Operators: News and curiosities

The "Tourist" service, changes in the "Caring" (MTS) tariff plan, "Gudok" with its "Substitutes", "Related balance", MMS on Smeshariki and other news, already pretty annoying to everyone.

“Tourist” in Ukraine

Or in Ukraine? No matter how you write, you will not get offended. Probably, for reasons of political correctness and out of harm's way, one should write “on the territory of the sovereign state of Ukraine”, so no one will find fault with it. We read the description of the new MTS promotional service here, quotes:

“MTS continues to develop the affordable roaming program and reduces roaming tariffs in Ukraine to 3 rubles. Have you decided to go on holiday to Ukraine this year? Before the trip, activate the "Tourist" service and call any MTS-Russia numbers and receive any calls at a price of 3 rubles per minute after the 1st minute of the call. The cost of the first minute of conversation is 33 rubles. The service can be connected from June 20 to September 30, 2009 for a period of 14 days. Preferential tariffs are valid from the moment of connection of the service. Service connection fee 150 rub. VAT included. There is no subscription fee. You will be able to use the offer in roaming only if the "International and national roaming" and "International access" services are activated. The offer is valid only when you are in the MTS-Ukraine (UMC) network, the name of the network on the phone display is MTS UKR, UMC UA, UKR 01, 255 01.

The new service successfully implemented three modern trends in cellular marketing at once:

  • Charging a one-time discount fee in the form of a “service connection cost”. It is important from the point of view of consumer psychology: the one who paid the discount in advance will certainly talk and bring income to the operator, otherwise why would they spend money?
  • Increasingly active exploitation of a disguised connection fee, referred to as the "cost of the first minute of a call." It's too tempting to pass up. Indeed: it is impossible to call directly from the second minute for technical reasons, but it is very possible to indicate in advertising the price of a minute starting from the second. And in particularly outstanding cases of advertising cunning, even with the fifth or sixth, if only the clarification in small print was present somewhere in the corner of the poster.
  • Rigid fixation of the discount period. The phrase "Subscriber fee is not charged" warms the tender soul of the subscriber, at the same time allowing the operator to take this same monthly fee in advance for the entire period of the discount. In the end, everyone is satisfied and happy.

About a year ago, MTS reduced the cost of a roaming minute in Ukraine by a ruble (from 26 to 25 rubles in the MTS group of companies in the CIS), while "under the guise" of this case, they sharply increased the rest of the roaming rates. Naturally, the same decrease in prices for the ruble was advertised, our material can be read here. Then, “in the development of the affordable roaming and tariff reduction program” ©, the program developed towards the inclusion of the MTS-CIS group of companies in the general list of countries. And the “reduction of tariffs”, respectively, materialized in the form of a price change from 25 rubles per minute. to the current 59 rubles / min. A kind of small optimization overhead to simplify perception. It is clear that certain vindictive individuals were offended by such optimization, and the “Close Countries” service was created especially for them, returning the previous 25 rubles per minute. for a symbolic one-time fee of 90 rubles. The circle is closed, people “in the know” are satisfied, the rest pay 59 rubles each. in a minute. At press conferences, the company's management does not get tired of repeating that exorbitantly high roaming prices are caused by the greed of foreign partners. In fact, do not pay extra for the calls of subscribers from your own pocket? It must be assumed that the foreign partner represented by MTS-Ukraine agreed to meet the needs of his colleague MTS-Russia, which made it possible to reduce the price of the first minute from the previous 25 to 33 rubles and to 3 rubles starting from the second as part of the Tourist service.

This was a lyrical digression and a brief history of the issue, now about some features of the action.

  • Important! The "Tourist" discount (33 rubles for the first minute, 3 rubles for all subsequent minutes) is valid for all incoming calls, for outgoing calls only when calling to MTS-Russia phones.
  • The cost of obtaining a discount is 150 rubles, it is completely removed when the service is activated. The discount is valid for 14 days from the date of activation.
  • Service connection - by USSD-command or via Internet assistant. The USSD-command option looks more preferable, as it allows you to connect a discount already from the territory of Ukraine and “win” an extra day this way.
  • For longer trips, the service can be activated again, the next 14 days of the discount will be counted from the moment of the second connection.
  • The "Tourist" discount is not summed up with the "Nearby countries" discount, with the "Tourist" connected, all outgoing calls except for calls to MTS-Russia are charged at 59 rubles per minute. After the expiration of the 14-day period of validity of the "Tourist", a single billing of 25 rubles per minute is returned. to all incoming, as well as outgoing local calls and calls to Russia (with the Close Countries service activated).
  • The cost of an SMS message with the "Tourist" discount enabled is 15 rubles, GPRS traffic (60 Kb) is 30 rubles. With the connected service "Close countries" - 7 rubles. and 18 rubles. respectively.
  • Activation of the "Tourist" service is possible until September 30 inclusive. Accordingly, the discount connected on September 30 will be valid until October 14.
  • The warning about the discount only when in the MTS-Ukraine network should not worry us, for MTS subscribers the inability to register in the Ukrainian networks of competitors is provided by technical means.

The expediency of connecting a discount depends on the profile and features of communication. For those who call from vacation often and briefly, the discount may turn out to be unprofitable (in the "Tourist" the first minute is more expensive), but when calling only to MTS phones, 150 rubles. connection will pay for itself. In the end, the opportunity to talk from the heart without watching the stopwatch hand can be considered part of a comfortable stay. The inevitable payment for comfort is a rigid linking of the discount only to incoming calls and calls to MTS-Russia, several calls at 59 rubles per minute. to phones of other Russian operators and / or local phones can easily "eat" all the savings. But for those who communicate exclusively within the "MTS-Russia Club", the "Tourist" discount can be safely recommended.

As a summary. By activating the service "Close countries", we for 90 rubles. we get "forever" all incoming, outgoing local, and all outgoing to Russia at 25 rubles per minute. As well as SMS-messages for 7 rubles. and GPRS traffic for 18 rubles. By activating the "Tourist" service, we pay 150 rubles. we receive for 14 days all incoming and outgoing calls to MTS-Russia according to the scheme of 33/3 rubles/min., all other outgoing calls (local and to Russia) at 59 rubles/min. As well as SMS-messages for 15 rubles. and GPRS traffic for 30 rubles. When the combination of services "Close countries" and "Tourist" is connected, the tariffication of SMS messages is 7 rubles. and GPRS traffic for 18 rubles. is preserved, so for those who regularly visit Ukraine, the connection of the “Close countries” service is recommended in any case. As for voice traffic, look at your communication profile and don't be hypnotized by the "3 rubles per minute" ad.

Caregiver Update

We read the important news about the change in the parameters of the Caring tariff here, and our review of the tariff can be found here. Quote from the news:

“From July 1, 2009, the procedure for connecting and switching to the “Caring” tariff is simplified - now you can connect your parents and grandparents to this tariff plan or transfer it to it without presenting a pension certificate.

When served on the "Caring" tariff plan, your parents and grandparents can receive bonus minutes for incoming calls from "favorite" numbers. For every five minutes of incoming calls, one bonus minute is awarded. Starting July 1, 2009, the monthly zeroing of bonus accumulations is cancelled. Within one day, you can accumulate no more than 10 bonus minutes.

How did this rather nondescript tariff turn out to be good for the operator, and why did they suddenly decide to “optimize” it in a good way for users? Quote from our description:

“The tariff is niche and semi-closed, connection or transition is possible only upon presentation of a pension certificate. By themselves, the tariff parameters can hardly be considered super-preferential, but there is a bonus for incoming calls and free "favorite numbers". For rare and few callers in a narrow family circle, the tariff is not so bad, especially in light of the new MTS tariff trends.

It is possible that the improvement of the tariff parameters provoked the popularity of the Beeline Mobile Pensioner tariff plan. In general, "Mobile Pensioner" looks more attractive due to its versatility, and MTS could take care of increasing the competitiveness of its "brainchild". Did it work?

Despite the sad characteristics of "Caring" (all calls except on-net for 5 rubles/min.) and its niche nature, this offer has two valuable features: incoming calls from "Favorite" numbers are "rewarded" with bonus seconds; you can connect up to five "Favorite" numbers, and up to three numbers without a subscription fee. For 5 minutes of incoming calls from "Favorite" numbers, a "Caring" subscriber receives 1 minute of outgoing calls to any MTS numbers within his region. True, the bonus accumulator is accumulated per second, i.e., for example, 15 short calls of 20 seconds each to "Caring" will be billed as a full-fledged 15 minutes of outgoing calls, but the owner of "Caring" will be given only 1 bonus minute.

The current tariff upgrade cancels the "burning" of accumulated bonuses at the end of the month, this important change increases the attractiveness of the tariff. Although in general, "Caring" still remains a narrow niche offer for pensioners who rarely use the phone. As for the simplification of connection conditions (declared refusal from the mandatory presentation of a pension certificate), I have not yet been able to find out a new connection mechanism either through the contact center or through the operator's press service. Indeed, a person can be a pensioner at the age of 30. In general, let's wait for July 1 and find out everything.

News "in the subject" - the service "Kindred balance", which should soon materialize in the Moscow region. If it materializes. The news announcement of June 1 can be read here, quote:

“MTS Company expands the possibilities of the “Favorite Number” service. Very soon you will be able to share the secret with your loved ones. Stay tuned!"

It is a pity that they did not write how long we should "follow the news". Month? Year? As far as I understand, we are talking about the ability to control the balance of the personal account on "Favorite numbers". For us, the service is not very interesting: since you are reading this text, you can just as well check the balance of a child or grandparents through an Internet assistant. But as an additional functionality - very good. Similar services are already operating in other regions, you can find, for example, here.

QIWI/Comstar: do the cute ones scold - only amuse?

Even before the commercial launch of the WiMax network, Comstar was actively interested in the organization of payment. The initial choice of options did not look very encouraging: e-port payment terminals or one of the Comstar offices. For a long time they promised to start accepting payments through QIWI terminals, and now, finally, the long-awaited event has happened.

True, I personally have not yet been able to pay for Comstr services via QIWI, but in principle the payment service has been launched, the news has been published and press releases have been sent out. And that the payment does not go through and the personal account system “does not see point-blank”, so maybe this is my karma. But unexpectedly, I discovered a nice new feature in the QIWI payment service: in case of payment failure due to a technical error, the system carefully sends an SMS message to the mobile phone number registered in the "Personal Account".

Price increase for MMS and ringer replacement

The sad news about the rise in price of MMS messages on the popular "children's" tariff plan "Smeshariki" is posted in the "press releases" section, read here. Quote:

“The cost of an MMS sent to numbers of Russian mobile operators for Smeshariki and Contact tariff plans will be 6 rubles from 06/30/2009. with VAT per message.

Until June 30, the cost of MMS messages on Smeshariki is 1 ruble. per message, at a special tariff "Contact" for the hearing impaired - 4.50 rubles. Children are the flowers of life, and you know how much bouquets are now, the pleasure is not cheap. But why did they offend the hearing-impaired, whose life is already far from sugar? Yes, and the current 4.50 rubles. for MMS, with all the desire, you can’t call it a charitable price. For reference: a similar MTS service "SMS World" provides a preferential rate for sending MMS messages: 1.95 rubles. for an MMS message within the network and 5.50 rubles. for an MMS message to other operators.

So I got to "Change the horn" in the Try & Buy mode, I'm waiting with interest for the appearance of "Live Balance". If you believe the SMS warnings sent, the service connected without my initiative should fall off on its own in 14 days, without causing me any financial losses and moral suffering. I won’t comment yet, I’ll wait a few more days until the wonderful service shuts down.

Operators: News and curiosities

The "Tourist" service, changes in the "Caring" (MTS) tariff plan, "Gudok" with its "Substitutes", "Related balance", MMS on Smeshariki and other news, already pretty annoying to everyone.

“Tourist” in Ukraine

Or in Ukraine? No matter how you write, you will not get offended. Probably, for reasons of political correctness and out of harm's way, one should write “on the territory of the sovereign state of Ukraine”, so no one will find fault with it. We read the description of the new MTS promotional service here, quotes:

“MTS continues to develop the affordable roaming program and reduces roaming tariffs in Ukraine to 3 rubles. Have you decided to go on vacation to Ukraine this year? Before the trip, activate the "Tourist" service and call any MTS-Russia numbers and receive any calls at a price of 3 rubles per minute after the 1st minute of the call. The cost of the first minute of conversation is 33 rubles. The service can be activated from June 20 to September 30, 2009 for a period of 14 days. Preferential tariffs are valid from the moment the service is connected. Service connection fee 150 rub. VAT included. There is no subscription fee. You will be able to use the offer in roaming only if the "International and national roaming" and "International access" services are activated. The offer is valid only when you are in the MTS-Ukraine (UMC) network, the name of the network on the phone display is MTS UKR, UMC UA, UKR 01, 255 01.

The new service successfully implemented three modern trends in cellular marketing at once:

  • Charging a one-time discount fee in the form of a “service connection cost”. It is important from the point of view of consumer psychology: the one who paid the discount in advance will certainly talk and bring income to the operator, otherwise why would they spend money?
  • Increasingly active exploitation of a disguised connection fee, referred to as the "cost of the first minute of a call." It's too tempting to pass up. Indeed: it is impossible to call directly from the second minute for technical reasons, but it is very possible to indicate in advertising the price of a minute starting from the second. And in particularly outstanding cases of advertising cunning, even with the fifth or sixth, if only the clarification in small print was present somewhere in the corner of the poster.
  • Rigid fixation of the discount period. The phrase "Subscriber fee is not charged" warms the tender soul of the subscriber, at the same time allowing the operator to take this same monthly fee in advance for the entire period of the discount. In the end, everyone is satisfied and happy.

About a year ago, MTS reduced the cost of a roaming minute in Ukraine by a ruble (from 26 to 25 rubles in the MTS group of companies in the CIS), while "under the guise" of this case, they sharply increased the rest of the roaming rates. Naturally, the same decrease in prices for the ruble was advertised, our material can be read here. Then, “in the development of the affordable roaming and tariff reduction program” ©, the program developed towards the inclusion of the MTS-CIS group of companies in the general list of countries. And the “reduction of tariffs”, respectively, materialized in the form of a price change from 25 rubles per minute. to the current 59 rubles / min. A kind of small optimization overhead to simplify perception. It is clear that certain vindictive individuals were offended by such optimization, and the “Close Countries” service was created especially for them, returning the previous 25 rubles per minute. for a symbolic one-time fee of 90 rubles. The circle is closed, people “in the know” are satisfied, the rest pay 59 rubles each. in a minute. At press conferences, the company's management does not get tired of repeating that exorbitantly high roaming prices are caused by the greed of foreign partners. In fact, do not pay extra for the calls of subscribers from your own pocket? It must be assumed that the foreign partner represented by MTS-Ukraine agreed to meet the needs of his colleague MTS-Russia, which made it possible to reduce the price of the first minute from the previous 25 to 33 rubles and to 3 rubles starting from the second as part of the Tourist service.

This was a lyrical digression and a brief history of the issue, now about some features of the action.

  • Important! The "Tourist" discount (33 rubles for the first minute, 3 rubles for all subsequent minutes) is valid for all incoming calls, for outgoing calls only when calling to MTS-Russia phones.
  • The cost of obtaining a discount is 150 rubles, it is completely removed when the service is activated. The discount is valid for 14 days from the date of activation.
  • Service connection - by USSD-command or via Internet assistant. The USSD-command option looks more preferable, as it allows you to connect a discount already from the territory of Ukraine and “win” an extra day this way.
  • For longer trips, the service can be activated again, the next 14 days of the discount will be counted from the moment of the second connection.
  • The "Tourist" discount is not summed up with the "Nearby countries" discount, with the "Tourist" connected, all outgoing calls except for calls to MTS-Russia are charged at 59 rubles per minute. After the expiration of the 14-day period of validity of the "Tourist", a single billing of 25 rubles per minute is returned. to all incoming calls, as well as outgoing local and to Russia calls (with the Close Countries service activated).
  • The cost of an SMS message with the "Tourist" discount enabled is 15 rubles, GPRS traffic (60 Kb) is 30 rubles. With the connected service "Close countries" - 7 rubles. and 18 rubles. respectively.
  • Activation of the "Tourist" service is possible until September 30 inclusive. Accordingly, the discount connected on September 30 will be valid until October 14.
  • The warning about the discount only when in the MTS-Ukraine network should not worry us, for MTS subscribers the inability to register in the Ukrainian networks of competitors is provided by technical means.

The expediency of connecting a discount depends on the profile and features of communication. For those who call from vacation often and briefly, the discount may turn out to be unprofitable (in the "Tourist" the first minute is more expensive), but when calling only to MTS phones, 150 rubles. connection will pay for itself. In the end, the opportunity to talk from the heart without watching the stopwatch hand can be considered part of a comfortable stay. The inevitable payment for comfort is a rigid linking of the discount only to incoming calls and calls to MTS-Russia, several calls at 59 rubles per minute. to phones of other Russian operators and / or local phones can easily "eat" all the savings. But for those who communicate exclusively within the "MTS-Russia Club", the "Tourist" discount can be safely recommended.

As a summary. By activating the service "Close countries", we for 90 rubles. we get "forever" all incoming, outgoing local, and all outgoing to Russia at 25 rubles per minute. As well as SMS-messages for 7 rubles. and GPRS traffic for 18 rubles. By activating the "Tourist" service, we pay 150 rubles. we receive for 14 days all incoming and outgoing calls to MTS-Russia according to the scheme of 33/3 rubles/min., all other outgoing calls (local and to Russia) at 59 rubles/min. As well as SMS-messages for 15 rubles. and GPRS traffic for 30 rubles. When the combination of services "Close countries" and "Tourist" is connected, the tariffication of SMS messages is 7 rubles. and GPRS traffic for 18 rubles. is preserved, so for those who regularly visit Ukraine, the connection of the “Close countries” service is recommended in any case. As for voice traffic, look at your communication profile and don't be hypnotized by the "3 rubles per minute" ad.

Caregiver Update

We read the important news about the change in the parameters of the Caring tariff here, and our review of the tariff can be found here. News quote:

“From July 1, 2009, the procedure for connecting and switching to the “Caring” tariff is simplified - now you can connect your parents and grandparents to this tariff plan or transfer it to it without presenting a pension certificate.

When served on the "Caring" tariff plan, your parents and grandparents can receive bonus minutes for incoming calls from "favorite" numbers. For every five minutes of incoming calls, one bonus minute is awarded. Starting July 1, 2009, the monthly zeroing of bonus accumulations is cancelled. Within one day, you can accumulate no more than 10 bonus minutes.

How did this rather nondescript tariff turn out to be good for the operator, and why did they suddenly decide to “optimize” it in a good way for users? Quote from our description:

“The tariff is niche and semi-closed, connection or transition is possible only upon presentation of a pension certificate. By themselves, the tariff parameters can hardly be considered super-preferential, but there is a bonus for incoming calls and free "favorite numbers". For rare and few callers in a narrow family circle, the tariff is not so bad, especially in light of the new MTS tariff trends.

It is possible that the improvement of the tariff parameters provoked the popularity of the Beeline Mobile Pensioner tariff plan. In general, "Mobile Pensioner" looks more attractive due to its versatility, and MTS could take care of increasing the competitiveness of its "brainchild". Did it work?

Despite the sad characteristics of "Caring" (all calls except on-net for 5 rubles/min.) and its niche nature, this offer has two valuable features: incoming calls from "Favorite" numbers are "rewarded" with bonus seconds; you can connect up to five "Favorite" numbers, and up to three numbers without a subscription fee. For 5 minutes of incoming calls from "Favorite" numbers, a "Caring" subscriber receives 1 minute of outgoing calls to any MTS numbers within his region. True, the bonus accumulator is accumulated per second, i.e., for example, 15 short calls of 20 seconds each to "Caring" will be billed as a full-fledged 15 minutes of outgoing calls, but the owner of "Caring" will be given only 1 bonus minute.

The current tariff upgrade cancels the "burning" of accumulated bonuses at the end of the month, this important change increases the attractiveness of the tariff. Although in general, "Caring" still remains a narrow niche offer for pensioners who rarely use the phone. As for the simplification of connection conditions (declared refusal from the mandatory presentation of a pension certificate), I have not yet been able to find out a new connection mechanism either through the contact center or through the operator's press service. Indeed, a person can be a pensioner at the age of 30. In general, we will wait until July 1 and find out everything.

News "in the subject" - the service "Kindred balance", which should soon materialize in the Moscow region. If it materializes. The news announcement of June 1 can be read here, quote:

“MTS Company expands the possibilities of the “Favorite Number” service. Very soon you will be able to share the secret with your loved ones. Stay tuned!"

It is a pity that they did not write how long we should "follow the news". Month? Year? As far as I understand, we are talking about the ability to control the balance of the personal account on "Favorite numbers". For us, the service is not very interesting: since you are reading this text, you can just as well check the balance of a child or grandparents through an Internet assistant. But as an additional functionality - very good. Similar services are already operating in other regions, you can find, for example, here.

QIWI/Comstar: do the cute ones scold - only amuse?

Even before the commercial launch of the WiMax network, Comstar was actively interested in the organization of payment. The initial choice of options did not look very encouraging: e-port payment terminals or one of the Comstar offices. For a long time they promised to start accepting payments through QIWI terminals, and now, finally, the long-awaited event has happened.

True, I personally have not yet been able to pay for Comstr services via QIWI, but in principle the payment service has been launched, the news has been published and press releases have been sent out. And that the payment does not go through and the personal account system “does not see point-blank”, so maybe this is my karma. But unexpectedly, I discovered a nice new feature in the QIWI payment service: in case of payment failure due to a technical error, the system carefully sends an SMS message to the mobile phone number registered in the "Personal Account".

Price increase for MMS and ringer replacement

The sad news about the rise in price of MMS messages on the popular "children's" tariff plan "Smeshariki" is posted in the "press releases" section, read here. Quote:

“The cost of an MMS sent to numbers of Russian mobile operators for Smeshariki and Contact tariff plans will be 6 rubles from 06/30/2009. with VAT per message.

Until June 30, the cost of MMS messages on Smeshariki is 1 ruble. per message, at a special tariff "Contact" for the hearing impaired - 4.50 rubles. Children are the flowers of life, and you know how much bouquets are now, the pleasure is not cheap. But why did they offend the hearing-impaired, whose life is already far from sugar? Yes, and the current 4.50 rubles. for MMS, with all the desire, you can’t call it a charitable price. For reference: a similar MTS service "SMS World" provides a preferential rate for sending MMS messages: 1.95 rubles. for an MMS message within the network and 5.50 rubles. for an MMS message to other operators.

So I got to "Change the horn" in the Try & Buy mode, I'm waiting with interest for the appearance of "Live Balance". If you believe the SMS warnings sent, the service connected without my initiative should fall off on its own in 14 days, without causing me any financial losses and moral suffering. I won’t comment yet, I’ll wait a few more days until the wonderful service shuts down.

Operators: News and curiosities

The "Tourist" service, changes in the "Caring" (MTS) tariff plan, "Gudok" with its "Substitutes", "Related balance", MMS on Smeshariki and other news, already pretty annoying to everyone.

“Tourist” in Ukraine

Or in Ukraine? No matter how you write, you will not get offended. Probably, for reasons of political correctness and out of harm's way, one should write “on the territory of the sovereign state of Ukraine”, so no one will find fault with it. We read the description of the new MTS promotional service here, quotes:

“MTS continues to develop the affordable roaming program and reduces roaming tariffs in Ukraine to 3 rubles. Have you decided to go on holiday to Ukraine this year? Before the trip, activate the "Tourist" service and call any MTS-Russia numbers and receive any calls at a price of 3 rubles per minute after the 1st minute of the call. The cost of the first minute of conversation is 33 rubles. The service can be connected from June 20 to September 30, 2009 for a period of 14 days. Preferential tariffs are valid from the moment of connection of the service. Service connection fee 150 rubles. VAT included. There is no subscription fee. You will be able to use the offer in roaming only if the "International and national roaming" and "International access" services are activated. The offer is valid only when you are in the MTS-Ukraine (UMC) network, the name of the network on the phone display is MTS UKR, UMC UA, UKR 01, 255 01.

“MTS continues to develop the affordable roaming program and reduces roaming tariffs in Ukraine to 3 rubles. Have you decided to go on vacation to Ukraine this year? Before the trip, activate the "Tourist" service and call any MTS-Russia numbers and receive any calls at a price of 3 rubles per minute after the 1st minute of the call. The cost of the first minute of conversation is 33 rubles. The service can be activated from June 20 to September 30, 2009 for a period of 14 days. Preferential tariffs are valid from the moment the service is connected. Service connection fee 150 rubles. VAT included. There is no subscription fee. You will be able to use the offer in roaming only if the "International and national roaming" and "International access" services are activated. The offer is valid only when you are in the MTS-Ukraine (UMC) network, the name of the network on the phone display is MTS UKR, UMC UA, UKR 01, 255 01.

The new service successfully implemented three modern trends in cellular marketing at once:

  • Charging a one-time discount fee in the form of a “service connection cost”. It is important from the point of view of consumer psychology: the one who paid the discount in advance will certainly talk and bring income to the operator, otherwise why would they spend money?
  • Increasingly active exploitation of a disguised connection fee, referred to as the "cost of the first minute of a call." It's too tempting to pass up. Indeed: it is impossible to call directly from the second minute for technical reasons, but it is very possible to indicate in advertising the price of a minute starting from the second. And in particularly outstanding cases of advertising cunning, even with the fifth or sixth, if only the clarification in small print was present somewhere in the corner of the poster.
  • Rigid fixation of the discount period. The phrase "Subscriber fee is not charged" warms the tender soul of the subscriber, at the same time allowing the operator to take this same monthly fee in advance for the entire period of the discount. In the end, everyone is satisfied and happy.

About a year ago, MTS reduced the cost of a roaming minute in Ukraine by a ruble (from 26 to 25 rubles in the MTS group of companies in the CIS), while "under the guise" of this case, they sharply increased the rest of the roaming rates. Naturally, the same decrease in prices for the ruble was advertised, our material can be read here. Then, “in the development of the affordable roaming and tariff reduction program” ©, the program developed towards the inclusion of the MTS-CIS group of companies in the general list of countries. And the “reduction of tariffs”, respectively, materialized in the form of a price change from 25 rubles per minute. to the current 59 rubles / min. A kind of small optimization overhead to simplify perception. It is clear that certain vindictive individuals were offended by such optimization, and the “Close Countries” service was created especially for them, returning the previous 25 rubles per minute. for a symbolic one-time fee of 90 rubles. The circle is closed, people “in the know” are satisfied, the rest pay 59 rubles each. in a minute. At press conferences, the company's management does not get tired of repeating that exorbitantly high roaming prices are caused by the greed of foreign partners. In fact, do not pay extra for the calls of subscribers from your own pocket? It must be assumed that the foreign partner represented by MTS-Ukraine agreed to meet the needs of his colleague MTS-Russia, which made it possible to reduce the price of the first minute from the previous 25 to 33 rubles and to 3 rubles starting from the second as part of the Tourist service.

This was a lyrical digression and a brief history of the issue, now about some features of the action.

  • Important! The "Tourist" discount (33 rubles for the first minute, 3 rubles for all subsequent minutes) is valid for all incoming calls, for outgoing calls only when calling to MTS-Russia phones.
  • The cost of obtaining a discount is 150 rubles, it is completely removed when the service is activated. The discount is valid for 14 days from the date of activation.
  • Service connection - by USSD-command or via Internet assistant. The USSD-command option looks more preferable, as it allows you to connect a discount already from the territory of Ukraine and “win” an extra day this way.
  • For longer trips, the service can be activated again, the next 14 days of the discount will be counted from the moment of the second connection.
  • The "Tourist" discount is not summed up with the "Nearby countries" discount, with the "Tourist" connected, all outgoing calls except for calls to MTS-Russia are charged at 59 rubles per minute. After the expiration of the 14-day period of validity of the "Tourist", a single billing of 25 rubles per minute is returned. to all incoming, as well as outgoing local calls and calls to Russia (with the Close Countries service activated).
  • The cost of an SMS message with the "Tourist" discount enabled is 15 rubles, GPRS traffic (60 Kb) is 30 rubles. With the connected service "Close countries" - 7 rubles. and 18 rubles. respectively.
  • Activation of the "Tourist" service is possible until September 30 inclusive. Accordingly, the discount connected on September 30 will be valid until October 14.
  • The warning about the discount only when in the MTS-Ukraine network should not worry us, for MTS subscribers the inability to register in the Ukrainian networks of competitors is provided by technical means.

The expediency of connecting a discount depends on the profile and features of communication. For those who call from vacation often and briefly, the discount may turn out to be unprofitable (in the "Tourist" the first minute is more expensive), but when calling only to MTS phones, 150 rubles. connection will pay for itself. In the end, the opportunity to talk from the heart without watching the stopwatch hand can be considered part of a comfortable stay. The inevitable payment for comfort is a rigid linking of the discount only to incoming calls and calls to MTS-Russia, several calls at 59 rubles per minute. to phones of other Russian operators and / or local phones can easily "eat" all the savings. But for those who communicate exclusively within the "MTS-Russia Club", the "Tourist" discount can be safely recommended.

As a summary. By activating the service "Close countries", we for 90 rubles. we get "forever" all incoming, outgoing local, and all outgoing to Russia at 25 rubles per minute. As well as SMS-messages for 7 rubles. and GPRS traffic for 18 rubles. By activating the "Tourist" service, we pay 150 rubles. we receive for 14 days all incoming and outgoing calls to MTS-Russia according to the scheme of 33/3 rubles/min., all other outgoing calls (local and to Russia) at 59 rubles/min. As well as SMS-messages for 15 rubles. and GPRS traffic for 30 rubles. When the combination of services "Close countries" and "Tourist" is connected, the tariffication of SMS messages is 7 rubles. and GPRS traffic for 18 rubles. is preserved, so for those who regularly visit Ukraine, the connection of the “Close countries” service is recommended in any case. As for voice traffic, look at your communication profile and don't be hypnotized by the "3 rubles per minute" ad.

Caregiver Update

We read the important news about the change in the parameters of the Caring tariff here, and our review of the tariff can be found here. News quote:

“From July 1, 2009, the procedure for connecting and switching to the “Caring” tariff is simplified - now you can connect your parents, as well as grandparents to this tariff plan, without presenting a pension certificate.

When served on the "Caring" tariff plan, your parents and grandparents can receive bonus minutes for incoming calls from "favorite" numbers. For every five minutes of incoming calls, one bonus minute is awarded. Starting July 1, 2009, the monthly zeroing of bonus accumulations is cancelled. Within one day, you can accumulate no more than 10 bonus minutes.

How did this rather nondescript tariff turn out to be good for the operator, and why did they suddenly decide to “optimize” it in a good way for users? Quote from our description:

“The tariff is niche and semi-closed, connection or transition is possible only upon presentation of a pension certificate. By themselves, the tariff parameters can hardly be considered super-preferential, but there is a bonus for incoming calls and free "favorite numbers". For rare and few callers in a narrow family circle, the tariff is not so bad, especially in light of the new MTS tariff trends.

It is possible that the improvement of the tariff parameters provoked the popularity of the Beeline Mobile Pensioner tariff plan. In general, "Mobile Pensioner" looks more attractive due to its versatility, and MTS could take care of increasing the competitiveness of its "brainchild". Did it work?

Despite the sad characteristics of "Caring" (all calls except on-net for 5 rubles/min.) and its niche nature, this offer has two valuable features: incoming calls from "Favorite" numbers are "rewarded" with bonus seconds; you can connect up to five "Favorite" numbers, and up to three numbers without a subscription fee. For 5 minutes of incoming calls from "Favorite" numbers, a "Caring" subscriber receives 1 minute of outgoing calls to any MTS numbers within his region. True, the bonus accumulator is accumulated per second, i.e., for example, 15 short calls of 20 seconds each to "Caring" will be billed as a full-fledged 15 minutes of outgoing calls, but the owner of "Caring" will be given only 1 bonus minute.

The current tariff upgrade cancels the "burning" of accumulated bonuses at the end of the month, this important change increases the attractiveness of the tariff. Although in general, "Caring" still remains a narrow niche offer for pensioners who rarely use the phone. As for the simplification of connection conditions (declared refusal from the mandatory presentation of a pension certificate), I have not yet been able to find out a new connection mechanism either through the contact center or through the operator's press service. Indeed, a person can be a pensioner at the age of 30. In general, we will wait until July 1 and find out everything.

News "in the subject" - the service "Kindred balance", which should soon materialize in the Moscow region. If it materializes. The news announcement of June 1 can be read here, quote:

“MTS Company expands the possibilities of the “Favorite Number” service. Very soon you will be able to share the secret with your loved ones. Stay tuned!"

It is a pity that they did not write how long we should "follow the news". Month? Year? As far as I understand, we are talking about the ability to control the balance of the personal account on "Favorite numbers". For us, the service is not very interesting: since you are reading this text, you can just as well check the balance of a child or grandparents through an Internet assistant. But as an additional functionality - very good. Similar services are already operating in other regions, you can find, for example, here.

QIWI/Comstar: do the cute ones scold - only amuse?

Even before the commercial launch of the WiMax network, Comstar was actively interested in the organization of payment. The initial choice of options did not look very encouraging: e-port payment terminals or one of the Comstar offices. For a long time they promised to start accepting payments through QIWI terminals, and now, finally, the long-awaited event has happened.

True, I personally have not yet been able to pay for Comstr services via QIWI, but in principle the payment service has been launched, the news has been published and press releases have been sent out. And that the payment does not go through and the personal account system “does not see point-blank”, so maybe this is my karma. But unexpectedly, I discovered a nice new feature in the QIWI payment service: in case of payment failure due to a technical error, the system carefully sends an SMS message to the mobile phone number registered in the "Personal Account".

Price increase for MMS and ringer replacement

The sad news about the rise in price of MMS messages on the popular "children's" tariff plan "Smeshariki" is posted in the "press releases" section, read here. Quote:

“The cost of an MMS sent to numbers of Russian mobile operators for Smeshariki and Contact tariff plans will be 6 rubles from 30.06.2009. with VAT per message.

Until June 30, the cost of MMS messages on Smeshariki is 1 ruble. per message, at a special tariff "Contact" for the hearing impaired - 4.50 rubles. Children are the flowers of life, and you know how much bouquets are now, the pleasure is not cheap. But why did they offend the hearing-impaired, whose life is already far from sugar? Yes, and the current 4.50 rubles. for MMS, with all the desire, you can’t call it a charitable price. For reference: a similar MTS service "SMS World" provides a preferential rate for sending MMS messages: 1.95 rubles. for an MMS message within the network and 5.50 rubles. for an MMS message to other operators.

So I got to "Change the horn" in the Try & Buy mode, I'm waiting with interest for the appearance of "Live Balance". If you believe the SMS warnings sent, the service connected without my initiative should fall off on its own in 14 days, without causing me any financial losses and moral suffering. I won’t comment yet, I’ll wait a few more days until the wonderful service shuts down.