Vodafone's stunning backflip on data pricing plan

In what is being seen as a stunning turnaround, Vodafone has announced it will stop charging prepaid customers for data use in 1MB blocks.

Following a major public outcry, the telco giant says all 2.6 million will be billed for actual internet use rather than a minimum of one megabyte.

Related: Vodafone dumps Crazy John's

In a statement, the company said a decision not to go ahead with the plans "follows feedback from Vodafone pre-paid customers, who expressed concern about per-megabyte pricing”.

The controversy began when, in December and January, Vodafone texted its prepaid customers the changes that would affect their plan.

It included modifications to the data billing process as well as a stop on free access to major social networking services like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIN and MySpace.

Analysts had warned the plan could mean some pre-paid customers would end up paying much more every month for their internet use.

Related: Lessons from Vodafone's fail


But now the telco has made U-turn from charging for data in 1 megabyte blocks. This means customers will only be charged for data they actually use.

The changes to free social networking, however, will continue to go ahead, meaning that access to such services will be billed from February 13.

Vodafone said the revised changes came about after listening to feedback from customers who "expressed concern" about the change.

"We have decided to not only reverse our decision to introduce per [megabyte] charging, we'll also be dropping the existing rate to 1 [kilobyte] for all our prepaid customers," said Cormac Hodgkinson, Vodafone's director of customer care. "We are committed to listening, being transparent and providing our customers a worry-free experience."

Vodafone has been in news recently after announcing shut down plans for its Crazy John’s mobile brand that employs 300 people.

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