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Justice Dept completes inquiry of text messaging rates

updated 10:30 pm EST, Thu January 14, 2010

Government will not take action

The Justice Department has finally completed its investigation over text messaging fees charged by carriers such as Verizon, AT&T, Sprint Nextel and T-Mobile, according to the Wall Street Journal. Industry and government officials familiar with the matter claim the Department's antitrust division has decided not to intervene, effectively leaving the carriers to continue business as usual.

The text-messaging rate inquiry had been spearheaded by Senator Herb Kohl, chairman of the Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights subcommittee. The group pushed for investigation after the four largest carriers doubled their text messaging fees, with increases from 10 cents to 20 cents per message. Kohl argues that the cost to the phone companies has remained less than a penny per message.

Although the text messaging investigation appears to be finished for now, the government has since initiated several other probes into common industry practices. Verizon has been asked to explain its recent increase in early termination fees (ETFs) for smartphones, which now tops out at $350 for devices such as the Motorola Droid. The FCC claimed Verizon's justification was unsatisfying and sometimes "troubling."



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. msuper69

    Professional Poster

    Joined: Jan 2000

    +4

    Thanks for nothing.

    your comment

  1. Flying Meat

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: Jan 2007

    +4

    Turned texting off.

    Done.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    -3

    OK....

    The group pushed for investigation after the four largest carriers doubled their text messaging fees, with increases from 10 cents to 20 cents per message. Kohl argues that the cost to the phone companies has remained less than a penny per message.

    And is there some rule that you can't make a profit, or that you can only charge so much % over cost?

    And since when did texting become such a requirement that it's pricing required a federal investigation?

  1. shawnde

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Apr 2008

    +1

    Take commission and shut up ...

    I'm guessing the senator in question is going to get a penny from each text message sent, so he figured ... "f*ck it ... I'll take the money instead". Thanks for supporting your taxpayers. A**hole !!!

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