UK mobile operator BT Cellnet, part of mmO2, has been having trouble coping with the amount of text messaging traffic on its network. The situation is getting so bad that voice calls are being hampered. As a result, its Genie portal has suspended its offer of unlimited SMS messages.
Genie had not bargained for the volume of traffic young adults caused when taking advantage of the unlimited SMS. This had forced the operator to resort to filtering traffic to avoid interrupting voice calls, leaving many ‘recipients’ without messages.
In an attempt to solve the problem, Genie’s unlimited SMS customers have been notified via text that after 30 days, users on contract phones will be limited to 600 free messages per month. Pre-paid customers will have to get by with just 300.
Customers are likely to be disappointed with the new move, but Genie was bound to impose limits sooner or later. The combination of network congestion and the growing potential of SMS as a source of revenue left it with little choice.