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Optus to end free social networking access on postpaid plans

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yesoptusthumbOptus will cease to offer unmetered access to social networking sites on any new mobile postpaid plans, Tech Guide has revealed.

Optus confirmed new two-year post paid plans will no longer support unlimited access to sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, MySpace, eBay and FourSquare despite the offer still being displayed on its website at time of writing.

The move comes just three weeks after Optus announced 4G pre-paid plans with free social networking on the SIM only BYO smartphone offer.

An Optus spokesperson said social networking accounts for up to 25 per cent of data usage on average by customers.

In reply to Tech Guide’s enquiry to confirm Optus’s decision to end unmetered social media on postpaid, the company issued a statement which read:

“As smartphone popularity continues to rise in Australia, Optus needs to maintain and enhance the network to ensure our customers can get the most out of their devices,” the statement said.

“Optus seeks to strike a balance between delivering value to our customers and the ongoing network investment required to ensure a good customer experience.

“Many of the Optus postpaid mobile plans continue to offer unlimited SMS and unlimited on-net calling.

“Our new range of postpaid plans offer data allowances that cater to our customers’ usage patterns, which now includes social networking.”

Free social networking was introduced by Optus in mid 2010 as an added feature of its Timeless plans priced from $99.

The Optus statement was also quick to point out it has reduced excess data usage by 50 per cent on selected plans.

Optus has also introduced measures to allow customers to control the amount of money they spend including alert SMSs when a user reaches 50 per cent, 85 per cent and 100 per cent of their data limits.

If a customer unknowingly goes over their data limit, they can backdate a data top-up pack to avoid excess data charges.

Optus customers can also monitor their data usage with the My Optus App and My Account online.

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