Link: Noodle for cheap calls
Had a tip in from an SMS Text News reader earlier about a service called Noodle. The concept is quite simple – you get a new number which you use instead of your existing mobile number, and everytime you make or receive a call you earn 2p a minute cash. Is it too good to be true? My source has done a bit of digging..
– – – –
First of all – lets look at the ‘UK’ number range. According to
the 07000 range is allocated to Wire9 telecom, based on the Isle of Man. Wire9 (or Cloud9) offers a portioned soft switch service which allows third parties to basically operate as MVNOs using Wire9’s number range. As Noodle themselves happy admit (http://www.noodle-oodles.com/question.php), the Noodle service (driven by Wire9) falls under the FM06 interconnect range – lets just say that Three weren’t the only operator managing to extract +15ppm rates from other networks.
Now, I’m not quite sure how Ofcom’s latest ruling on interconnect rates affects Wire9, but I believe that they will likely still be extracting 15p+ per minute during peak even though Three has be regulated to 5.9p.
So, this explains how Noodle can both provide free international calls AND a rebate on your outgoing and incoming MoU – they receive such high interconnect payments that they can afford to give a little back.
What does this mean to you as a mobile punter?
You have to check if 077000 numbers are included in your bundle. I can categorically say that as of last month T-mobile do not consider these numbers as part of a bundle, and you are charged quite a bit for making these calls. Two example calls: A 56 second call costing 39.7p and a 105 second call costing 74.5p
Now I have heard that other operators are including these calls in their bundles – I fail, however, to see how this can be sustained if the interconnect rates exhibit such asymmetry.
So, if you plan on going with noodle
a) check that your network treats 07000 calls inclusive of your bundle
b) Tell your friends to check or else you may very well end up costing them a tonne of money!
– – – –
Interesting. Anyone else use Noodle, or have experience of using their service?
Update: Just signed up for a Noodle account and tried calling it using my office VOIP provider. It couldn’t route the call. Then tried using Skype – the charge came up at 14.4p per minute. Curious..