Singtel Saga

A few people have asked me what’s the outcome of my battle with Singtel. Well, we have reached a ceasefire.

Halimah from Singtel wrote back to say that they are agreeable to offering me 24 months free caller-id but they are unable to offer me free caller-id + free Data3 lite surf.

So i did some quick calculations and concluded that i’ll rather take 12 months free Data3 Lite, than 24 months free caller-id. The Data3 lite plan is worth $10.50 a month. Singtel agreed to give me that for free for 12 months, as well as waive the subscription fee.

And that’s the end to my battle with Singtel… now i gotta call 1626 again to sort out the difference between a normal GPRS user & a 3G GPRS user…


Nope, it’s not the end.

Sheesh! I called 1626 and the person I spoke to, Tana, made me really confused as to the rational behind the pricing for GPRS usage. If you refer to the website,, you will notice that the pay-per-use charges for a 3G user is 0.37 cts/KB, whereas the pay-per-use for a normal GPRS user (aka 2G user) is 0.53 cts/KB.

So i asked Tana, does it mean that being a 3G user, when i subscribe to the Data3 Lite plan, i actually get to surf more for the same price of $10.50, as a normal 2G user? Makes sense right?

Her reply was that no, even as a 3G user, i would be billed the same 0.53 cts/KB rate. Only difference is that any excess charges incurred on my bill, would be cheaper.

Huh?? Ok… let’s do some simple calculations.

Based on what Tana said, with the Data3 Lite plan, i’m given $15.75 worth of free data, for $10.50/month. So that works out to $15 / $0.0053 = 2830KB worth of “free” data.

However, if i DON’T subscribe to the Data3 Lite plan, and i surf as a “per-per-use” customer, if i were to surf 2830KB worth of data, at a rate of 0.37 cts/KB, I would then be billed 2830KB x $0.0037 = $10.50 a month as well!!

Then subscribe to the Data3 Lite plan for @(%& ? Needless to say, i just sent Singtel another email on this…

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April 2006