BUSINESS

Cellphone costs plunge by 22 percent in a year

Price of a one-minute call has now dropped below 10 euro cents

Not all basic services are becoming more expensive in crisis-hit Spain. The latest figures on the cost of calls from cellphones show an annual drop of 21.96 percent. The average income for mobile companies per minute is now 9.56 euro cents.

According to the CNMC anti-trust authority, the year-on-year fall in the sector's prices, comparing the third quarter of 2012 with the July-September period of this year, is the biggest registered in recent years, following the 18-percent decrease in 2012 and a 9.6-percent drop in 2011.

The rates for calls from landlines to cellphones also dropped in the last year, in this case by 17.4 percent to an average of 11.16 euro cents per minute.

Since 2005 cellphone user costs have fallen by half on average, while electricity bills have gone up by 70 percent. The reason for this difference is the fierce competition between mobile providers, which, thanks to the ease with which people can now change companies, fight to steal each other’s customers. This is quite different in the electricity sector, where three companies supply 90 percent of the domestic market.

The latest figures will help to improve Spain’s relative position in the European Union, where, up to now, its cellphone costs have been among the highest.

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