The agreement only applies to recieved SMS Tweets. Sending SMS to Twitter still counts towards your regular text plan with Vodafone.
“Anyone in the world can update Twitter via SMS but receiving tweets on your mobile has been restricted to North America,” said Vodafone in a statement. “Today, we’re happy to announce an agreement between Vodafone UK and Twitter. The shortcode for UK Vodafone customers is 86444 and you can activate your mobile in your Twitter settings. Sending tweets from your mobile will be part of your normal text messaging bundle with Vodafone – there will be no extra fees. In fact, for the first few weeks, sending tweets won’t even affect your bundle. Receiving tweets via SMS on your mobile is totally free.”
What we think?
I have to admit that before I read this story, I hadn’t considered this problem before. Since Twitter is a truly global phenomenon, those who have set their phones to send/recieve updates will be texting to and from places all over the world. There must be serious complications involved in that, on top of large charges being incurred by those recieving texts from abroad on a daily basis.
Vodafone has taken a pretty brave step in offering these roaming texts for free. There’s potentially a lot of lost revenue there, from Twitter users who no longer feel the need to communicate through SMS and use Twitter all the time. Obviously Vodafone has worked the numbers and figured that offering this service to it’s users will gather enough good will and loyalty to make it worthwhile.
It’s also a damn good indication of the growing power of Twitter!