ACMA shops 'freephone' charge changes

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ACMA shops 'freephone' charge changes

For mobile users.

Australia's communications regulator is shopping a draft variation to its numbering plan that would make 18/1800 numbers free to call from mobile phones by January 2015.

Chairman of the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), Chris Chapman, said pursuing reforms to the operation of so-called 'freephone' numbers "reflects changing consumer use of telecommunications services and improving price transparency".

"While there is still significant work ahead to realise these benefits, including the renegotiation by industry of interconnect agreements for calls to freephone numbers, I would very much welcome efforts by service providers to enable these benefits to be realised earlier than 1 January 2015," Chapman said.

The Communications Alliance said industry would focus on making 18/1800 calls free from mobiles before the 2015 deadline.

The ACMA also said it is considering "future arrangements for the cost of calls from mobile phones to local rate (13/1300) numbers".

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