It works now in Prague too, though maybe it would have anyway.
So now this one 20 euro prepaid data card has worked in Germany, Austria, Slovenia, and the Czech republic.
This was so confusing before, lots of sim cards would roam in different countries, but only for texts and sms. The data would just shut down. Sometimes one type of plan would work and another wouldn't (on the same carrier). The carriers were super confusing about what would work where, digging through their sites would yield nothing about were things would work. You had to talk to phone shop people and other travelers to figure it out.
It it so great not to have to manage this country by country or get a special carrier to do this. And Europe is tiny, there was a guy on my train commuting from Slovenia to Austria for his paramedic job. And see http://thetruesize.com/
The news is underplaying how much better this is. It rocks.
There are 10 LTE bands currently in use in Europe: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LTE_frequency_bands#Deployment...
and 2 UMTS bands: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UMTS_frequency_bands#Deploymen...
Those are not necessarily the same bands that are in use in North America or Asia, or some other region and as a result there are very, very few phones that actually support all of them - even the EU variants.
Google Pixel is the only phone I'm aware of that supports every single one.
Slovenia and Czech Republic working are speculation. (But I've heard so many complaints about data roaming for prepaid that I think it's possibly better).
And so far its worked everywhere, after June 15th I haven't had issues.
But if it's relevant to anyone my iPhone 6S model (a1688) does have pretty good LTE band coverage for Europe. Namely, bands 1,3,7,20,38.
"Please note that this A1688 iPhone 6s model is compatible with LTE bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, (but not 30) in addition to TD-LTE bands 38, 39, 40, and 41 -- is intended for Sprint and Verizon as well as sold with a T-Mobile nano-SIM in the United States and a wide variety of carriers in Canada, Europe, Asia, and elsewhere worldwide."
Before they could charge 51.2 EUR/GB which is now lowered to 7.7 EUR/GB set to go down in steps to 2.5 EUR/GB by 2022.
This is very problematic, since in some countries operators are selling fix price 4G subscriptions with no data cap for prices like 20-50EUR/month. Now they are supposed to let us roam free, but still pay the outrageous per gigabyte fees to other operators.
This benefits large, multinational operators which sell data capped subscriptions. Small, local and competitive get hurt.
A little back of the envelope calculation and that puts my rate at €3.500 per GB. Now that's an absurd value!!
> Gut zu wissen: Du nutzt Deine Highspeed-MB mit Deinem CallYa-Tarif ohne Aufpreis in der ganzen EU. Falls Du den Basispreis oder Deine Tarif-Option nicht zahlst, kostet ein MB 5,95 Cent.
As a result on my prepaid CallYa plan, I have insane charges when roaming here.
In 2008 I downloaded 30 MB Firefox nightly on a ThinkPad whilst roaming in Serbia. Bad move. Set me back ~600 EUR.
I didn't know this beforehand, but I was 'lucky' to struck a deal with Vodafone to cut the cost in half.
Serbia isn't in EU though, and this was in 2008.
The EU does have a goal of creating a Single Market.
If the regulation implies improving the local infrastructure and the companies invest something, even better.
The Finnish operators were all granted that exemption to prevent the domestic price level from increasing:
Ulkomaan käytön normaalihinnat Itävallassa: Soitto Suomeen ja tekstiviestin lähetys kotimaan hinnoin + 0.03968 e/min tai 0.0124 e/kpl. Puhelun vastaanotto 0 e/min ja datasiirto 7.44 e/Gt. Ei koske Premium-liittymien erikoishinnoittelua. Hätänumero 112 0 e/min.
Sadly I feel this deal won't last for long when the UK leaves the EU.
Take heart though - someone sane may yet stop the whole lunatic circus completely.
Admittedly at the moment it looks like a massive dumpster fire, but I assume single market membership (currently the least awful outcome for the UK) would mean digital single market regs apply.
I wouldn't worry too much. The UK providers are quite good with this. e.g. The contract I signed a month ago was 16GB anywhere in EU for 19 quid. (voda). And the prepaid Three network cards can also roam with their data allowance in a sizable number of countries.
They've had them for a while already. Like months.
So what happens in another country? Free roaming won't be much use if no network covers my location? If on the other hand, I will be allowed any network for the price of my home network, I wonder if it would make sense to get a contract in another country, so that I can use all networks in Germany for free?
You will get a network that has a contract with your operator. The roaming regulations basically require the foreign networks to meet all reasonable requests for roaming: http://berec.europa.eu/eng/document_register/subject_matter/...
> I wonder if it would make sense to get a contract in another country, so that I can use all networks in Germany for free?
There are fair use clauses that allow the operators to charge for permanent roaming: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX%3A3... (section 3)
 in this German podcast: https://www.heise.de/video/artikel/Podcast-c-t-uplink-17-5-D...
And the rules are made to make it difficult to get that contract in a different country, as you aren't allowed to roam for 12 months a year for free.
And I'd say with O2 you don't get anywhere next to 90% LTE - not in the countryside (where Vodafone and Telekom often enough also offer EDGE at best), but also in major cities. Berlin is the worst (at Hbf and Gesundbrunnen you're lucky to have actually working HSDPA!), next comes Hamburg and Duesseldorf. Munich is fairly good, also in the subways.
The general problem with O2 is when the network gets congested - e.g. demonstrations, festivals, sometimes on Autobahns even traffic jams! - there is no Internet service at all. The phone may show a "4G" indicator but no traffic goes through. Telekom and Vodafone seem to handle sudden congestions way better, I am not sure how though.
When the networks where new, some offered roaming in some areas, I remember that as well. The E-Plus/O2 roaming was more of a technical thing when they merged, it should now be largely gone and a single network.
In addition O2/Eplus historically got the cheaper but more inefficient frequency ranges which made them the "low cost" players.
The argument feels a bit naive to me, and smacks of the oversimplified scenarios taught in economics-101. I'd agree with them if the increased roaming charges reflected the extra cost imposed on the network, but in reality the networks were just price-gouging a captive market.
They may be technically correct in that the networks could try to make up the lost revenue by raising prices, but the reasoning feels specious. It's not a question of one group being forced by law to subsidise another, it's a question of an unsavoury business practice being forced by law to end.
I suspect operators will make their money back from "I forgot to turn off roaming" to "I took too much from my roaming data".
It goes to show why carriers lobbied so hard to prevent European citizens to buy subscriptions from a different country considering roaming would truly create European competition between carriers.
Keeping in mind Dutch,French and Belgian carriers are sometimes one and the same entity it shows liberalism and free market is only promoted and applied when it benefits the strong (carriers), not the weak (consumers).
It's still a very good and welcomed evolution for consumers though :).
Between Belgium France and the Netherlands, there isn't much of a problem. However, if you start comparing e.g. the Netherlands with Romania, things get weird. Those consumer markets are vastly different, Romania is much cheaper.
I'd expect that, due to differing expectations of infrastructure building a network in Romanio would also be cheaper.
-BE to BE (in FR) : bundle
-BE to FR (in BE) : extra
-BE to FR (in FR) : extra
To Google & Apple
Please add an easy way to allow roaming in EU but not in other countries.
UK user in UK calls UK number – local country cost.
UK user in Germany calls UK number - same cost as calling locally from UK.
UK user in Germany calls German number – same cost as calling a UK number.
The weird edge-case is that calling a foreign number is less expensive when roaming; calling a German number from e.g. France is now cheaper than calling a German number from inside the UK, because the roaming regs affect roaming cost but do not affect what providers can charge for international calls from the home country.
Calling from your home country to another EU member country is not regulated and you'll pay the old long distance fees.
It may go even further - the brand name of the network you recognize may be not owned by the same company, as the rest for the networks with the same name. For example, O2 CZ and O2 SK are not owned by Telefonica (anymore), but the other O2 networks are.
When there's no network with the same prefix, the choice is usually random. It doesn't matter anyway, money-wise it is the same.
same as with depreciation of old Wolfram (?) light bulbs