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BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service. (Read 28,457 times)
Dave
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BT Home Phone Saver
Reply #15 - Apr 8th, 2017 at 12:29am
 
The latest BT Consumer Price Guide states that those who signed up to the first Home Phone Saver plan (2017), are still paying £19.99 per month. I can attest this to be correct as my dad is paying this, is not under contract and is paying nothing extra for Caller Display (which is usually £1.75 when out-of-contract). This package has not been available for new supply since 6 June 2015 (with prices guaranteed until January 2017).

Since then, there has been Home Phone Saver 2018 at £20.99 per month, the price for which is guaranteed until January 2018. It has not been available for new supply from 3rd April 2016, and was available on an 18 month contract. Home Phone Saver (2017) was a 12 month contract.

New subscriptions to Home Phone Saver 2019 have just ended, on 6 April. This was an 18 month contract costing £21.99 per month, the price of which is guaranteed until 2019.

Home Phone Saver 2020 has just been launched, and is also £21.99 per month, with prices guaranteed until 2020.

The cost of standard monthly line rental and Unlimited Anytime Calls is £27.98, or taken in conjunction with Line Rental Saver it equates to £26.08 per month.
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« Last Edit: Apr 8th, 2017 at 12:34am by Dave »  
 
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Dave
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BT Home Phone Saver 2020
Reply #16 - Mar 20th, 2018 at 3:46pm
 
BT Home Phone Saver usually renews early in April. As line rental for voice-only customers (without broadband) is to come down to £11.99, with Anytime inclusive calls at £9.50 having gone up in January, it would seem unlikely that BT will offer a new Home Phone Saver. This will mean that line rental plus anytime calls with no broadband will be £21.49, which is 50p short of the current Home Phone Saver 2020.

However, Home Phone Saver 2020 offers some other features that may make the extra 50p worthwhile, these including the full version of Call Minder (not just the cut-down BT1571) and Call Diversion.
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« Last Edit: Mar 20th, 2018 at 6:10pm by Dave »  
 
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #17 - Mar 20th, 2018 at 11:07pm
 

The original BT Home Phone Saver deal had half price calls to UK mobile numbers, a feature that was withdrawn in later versions of Home Phone Saver.

The feature list of the new Home Phone Saver deal has changed each year. The current version of Home Phone Saver has lots of features included that would cost extra with the alternative Line Rental and Unlimited Anytime calls deal. What is clear, is that anyone who is on a Weekend calls or an Evening and Weekend calls deal and uses their phone, even minimally, on weekdays is on the wrong call plan.

Whether they change to BT Line Rental and Unlimited Anytime calls, or to BT Home Phone Saver (including line rental and Unlimited Anytime calls) may not be immediately obvious. However, the latter is not available to customers who have their broadband with BT.
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« Last Edit: Mar 21st, 2018 at 8:12am by Ian01 »  
 
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Dave
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #18 - Mar 20th, 2018 at 11:12pm
 
Ian01 wrote on Mar 20th, 2018 at 11:07pm:
The original BT Home Phone Saver deal had half price calls to UK mobile numbers…

Gotcha!

Half price ‘per minute’ rates to mobiles – not half price call charges because of the Call Set-up fee.
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Dave
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #19 - Mar 20th, 2018 at 11:22pm
 
Those who have broadband (as well as those who don’t) can have Line Rental Plus, which costs an extra £2 per month on top of standard line rental. It includes a raft of features, although not Call Minder.

With one Calling Feature costing £5.00, two to four costing £9.25, and five or more costing £12.25, it would seem pointless not going for Line Rental Plus (unless the one Feature that is required is Call Minder). For the next week or two Home Phone Saver 2020 is also available for non-broadband customers.
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #20 - Aug 20th, 2018 at 10:20pm
 
Dave wrote on Mar 20th, 2018 at 11:22pm:
[…] For the next week or two Home Phone Saver 2020 is also available for non-broadband customers.

I must eat these words as BT Home Phone Saver 2020 remains available for new subscription, the cost of which is now guaranteed until 2021, previously until 2020. It was not withdrawn with no Home Phone Saver 2021 when the cost of line rental was reduced for voice-only customers.
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« Last Edit: Aug 20th, 2018 at 10:21pm by Dave »  
 
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #21 - Aug 21st, 2018 at 10:36am
 
The price has crept up (now £21.99/month) though.

See here.

Users need to beware the fact that the 1000 minutes of inclusive calls to mobiles are to BT mobiles only - and who knows what network you're dialling these days?
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« Last Edit: Aug 21st, 2018 at 10:39am by sergeant121 »  

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Dave
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #22 - Aug 21st, 2018 at 11:49am
 
sergeant121 wrote on Aug 21st, 2018 at 10:36am:
The price has crept up (now £21.99/month) though.

The price is as it was on 20 March 2018 when I made post #16:

Dave wrote on Mar 20th, 2018 at 3:46pm:
[…] This will mean that line rental plus anytime calls with no broadband will be £21.49, which is 50p short of the current Home Phone Saver 2020.

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« Last Edit: Aug 21st, 2018 at 11:50am by Dave »  
 
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Ian01
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #23 - Aug 21st, 2018 at 12:00pm
 

BT has recently (just a few weeks ago) added HPS 2020 to their price list website, it having been absent for the previous 18 months or more.

https://www.bt.com/pricing/current/Cust_Opts_Res_boo/sectoc.htm#3185-d0e1-sectio...

They have, however, placed it at the bottom of the list, after all the obsolete tariffs. The usual arrangement is for current tariffs to be listed first. The current HPS deal should be item 4 in the list, not item 22 (of 22).

Additionally, there are no tables of data for call charge information on that page and the individual links have been removed. There is, however, one link to a massive tariff guide in a PDF document. Wading through that will finally reveal the charges.

BT seems to be determined to make it as difficult as possible for people to find out about this deal.


The original BT Home Phone Saver (2017) deal (originally available from early/mid 2014 until 6 June 2015, and no longer available to new signups) with prices guaranteed until 2017 had half price calls to all UK mobile numbers, and still does, all for £19.99 per month.

Later iterations of Home Phone Saver had, and still have, inclusive calls to BT Mobile mobile numbers.

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« Last Edit: Aug 21st, 2018 at 11:04pm by Ian01 »  
 
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #24 - Jun 24th, 2019 at 9:46am
 
I get 'International and Premium Rate Call Barring' included free with my BT Home Phone Saver 2020 package. Unlike the 'Call Barring' calling feature, this is permanently activated at the exchange as it requires no input from me.

What BT don't say on their website is exactly which numbers are barred under the 'Premium Rate' part.

Is it just 09 numbers, or are calls to the 'non-inclusive' 08s (0842, 0843, 0844, 0871, 0872, 0873) also barred? And what about calls to Directory Enquiry numbers (118 500, 118 118, etc.) and the Speaking Clock (123), which are incredibly expensive and I would certainly class as premium-rate.

Phoning BT to ask doesn't get me anywhere. They just don't seem to know and become rather rattled. Their call centre staff are little more than sales people who probably work from the website in any case. I don't fancy making any potentially chargeable test calls to find out, though (given BT staff's ignorance on this matter) I'm sure I'd have grounds to request a refund should a charge occur.

I suppose I could ask the Operator, who should have more detailed technical information at their fingertips than the regular BT sales/customer service staff, but thought I'd try the knowledgeable people on this forum first.

Also, if I opt-in to the 'Call Barring' feature, I'll additionally be able to bar "Operator calls" by using option 4. Would this bar: A) *all* calls to 100, B) just the option to *speak* to (i.e. 'hold for') the Operator, or C) just the ability to have a call connected by the Operator, or indeed to book an alarm call costing over twelve pounds? Again, no one at BT can tell me.
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« Last Edit: Jun 25th, 2019 at 12:35am by Trenod »  
 
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #25 - Jun 24th, 2019 at 8:41pm
 
Trenod wrote on Jun 24th, 2019 at 9:46am:
'International and Premium Rate Call Barring' …

What BT don't say on their website is exactly which numbers are barred under the 'Premium Rate' part.

There is indeed no clear general definition of the term "Premium Rate numbers", although one could offer many different interpretations.
BT therefore needs to state exactly what it means in this particular context.
This information is neither published nor provided to front-line customer contact staff.

The
fair telecoms campaign
is in touch with BT and awaiting an authoritative response.
When we receive it, hopefully within a day or two, we will publish the information here.
We will also urge BT to make it available at appropriate places on its website and to its front-line staff.

Thanks for raising a very valid question.
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #26 - Jun 27th, 2019 at 12:15pm
 

There seems to be a widespread perception that "Premium Rate Numbers" means "anything regulated by PSA", including 09, 118 and certain voice or text mobile shortcodes. Many people remain unaware that 087 is covered, albeit only above a certain call charge or rate. Likewise, that for certain types of service the prefix or price is irrelevant and that, for example, where those services operate on 084 numbers they are also covered by PSA regulation.

Sky has a premium rate call bar. It covers only 09 numbers:
https://www.sky.com/shop/terms-conditions/talk/code-of-practice/premium-numbers/


In recent years, Ofcom has improved the language surrounding these services. A number of telecoms providers and service providers have some catching up to do.

Premium Rate Services are those where the charge is more than it would be to call or text an ordinary number and the called party derives some benefit, financial or otherwise, from that higher charge. This broad definition therefore potentially covers numbers starting 055, 056, 070 (for the moment), 076, 084, 087, 090, 091, 098, 118 and various mobile shortcodes.

PSA regulates only a subset of these, and they are known as Controlled Premium Rate Services (CPRS).

CPRS covers services operating on ...
- numbers starting 087 with a Service Charge of more than 7p per call or per minute,
- numbers starting 090 or 091 with a Service Charge of more than 7p per call or per minute,
- numbers starting 118 with a Service Charge of more than 7p per call or per minute,
- any other numbers where the charge for the service is more than 10p per call or per minute - thereby covering various voice shortcodes, but also potentially covering numbers starting 055, 056, 070 (for the moment) and 076,
- numbers where the charge is more than 20p per message (covering various text mobile shortcodes).

CPRS also covers some services irrespective of their price or the prefix they operate on. These include ...
- all chatlines,
- all "adult" entertainment services - thereby covering services on 098 numbers and elsewhere,
- all ICSS providers,
- all internet dialler operated services.
These services, even where operating on 084 numbers, must comply with the PSA general Code of Practice, and, in some cases, with the additional Special Conditions that apply to that particular type of service.

A comprehensive premium rate blocker would cover far more than "calls to 09 numbers", but could soon become complex. Further work from Ofcom to rationalise the National Numbering Plan would help here.


On another note, given that calls to 101 are currently 15p per call, some operators class these as premium rate and their premium rate call bar therefore blocks calls to 101. This will be solved when calls to 101 become free-to-caller in April 2020.
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« Last Edit: Jun 28th, 2019 at 12:05am by Ian01 »  
 
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #27 - Jun 27th, 2019 at 1:26pm
 
Ian01 wrote on Jun 27th, 2019 at 12:15pm:

We must hope that work in hand will lead to a clearer and commonly understood meaning for phrases such as "premium rate".

Readers may be interested to read the
fair telecoms campaign
response to the Ofcom consultation -
http://www.fairtelecoms.org.uk/docs.html?ftncr.

In the meantime we are still awaiting a definitive response from BT regarding what is achieved by use of the calling feature.
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #28 - Jun 28th, 2019 at 9:18pm
 
SilentCallsVictim wrote on Jun 24th, 2019 at 8:41pm:
Thanks for raising a very valid question.


And thank you for your tenacity in trying to get an answer to the question.

Unless you have Home Phone Saver 2020, 'International and Premium Rate Call Barring" normally costs £1.85 a month with BT, while 'Call Barring' costs a minimum of £5.75 a month under their 'Calling Features Pack'. Given that these are chargeable features, I feel that BT owe it to their customers to be completely honest about precisely what they 'do'.

I would imagine that whatever definition of Premium Rate they apply to 'International and Premium Rate Call Barring' would also apply to Option 7 of 'Call Barring'; though again, official confirmation of this would be most welcome, as well as exactly what Option 4 (Operator calls) does.

(Rant coming up...feel free to ignore!)

Of course, both these features were launched in the nineties, when mobile phone usage was very low; hence there is no 'bar calls to mobile numbers' option. I guess there is little will on BT's part to extend the services to include this; connecting calls to mobiles is a vital source of revenue for them. For the same reason, they launched 'Call Protect' to look as though they're doing something good for the customer to help them block junk calls, but it doesn't actually block anything; it merely diverts such calls to an 'answerphone' service. In that sense, it's little different than 1571. Hey presto! BT still gets revenue for connecting the calls, but the customer's phone doesn't ring. Win-win for BT. Not so great for the customer, who must periodically go to the trouble of checking the junk voicemail (which can't be switched off) to make sure there's nothing important there... BT actually refer to 'Call Protect' internally as 'Choose to Divert'. The clue is in the latter name!

If BT were serious about preventing junk calls, they'd make 'Choose to Refuse' (which *does* actually block calls at the exchange, before they can be connected) free-of-charge and extend that service to block 100 numbers instead of a woefully inadequate 10, as well as 'block by category'. 10 numbers was fine in the nineties when nuisance calls were made from payphones, rather than easy-to-obtain mobile phone SIM cards and VOIP applications (both largely untraceable). It's no longer fit for purpose. How BT have the nerve to continue charging £6.50 a month for such outdated tech is utterly incomprehensible. I believe they're phasing it out anyway, as it's no longer advertised and has to be added manually by back-office staff (i.e. customers can't add it themselves online at bt.com/callingfeatures or on the phone via a front-line agent), though it's still available for free as an opt-in for 'Line Rental Plus' customers. My parents still get it free with the original (2017) edition of Home Phone Saver, but it stopped showing on their bills ages ago - no doubt because it's been deleted from BT's online self-service options as mentioned, so the billing system is no longer set up to show it. 'Anonymous Call Reject' will probably also go once all exchanges get 'Call Protect' (i.e. 'Choose to Divert').

Incidentally, I note that TalkTalk's '14258' call-blocking service does indeed block (not divert) 100 numbers rather than 10. If they can do it, BT certainly could if they wanted to. Also, Plusnet's version of 'Call Protect' allows you to access all the options by dialling 1572 (far better for the elderly and non-broadband customers), while BT demands that you go online to review your diverted list and to manually add/delete individual numbers to/from it. Another reason why I prefer 'Choose to Refuse' over 'BT Call Protect'.
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« Last Edit: Jun 28th, 2019 at 10:50pm by Trenod »  
 
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Re: BT Launch New Home Phone Saver Service.
Reply #29 - Jun 29th, 2019 at 10:27pm
 

BT is now the ONLY major landline provider to NOT include calls to UK mobile numbers starting 071 to 075 and 077 to 079 within their inclusive call plans.

At the same time, they are one of the very last providers to still be including calls to premium rate 0845 and 0870 numbers. Many other providers stopped including them in, or soon after, July 2015.

These distortions in the market create confusion and are quite likely to be causing BT's monthly charge for inclusive calls to be unduly inflated.


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