Telia Denmark is launching a subscription for children that addresses parents’ concerns about mobile internet use. 4Junior, which has a set-up fee of DKK 99.00 (US $17.95) and costs DKK 49.00 (US $8.88) per month, provides unlimited voice calls to other Telia lines, 30 minutes of calls to other lines, and 300 MB of data at full speed. Spotify can be added for DKK 50.00 (US $9.00) per month. Calls outside the bundle cost DKK 0.70 (US $0.12) per minute and extra SMS cost DKK 0.20 (US $0.03), while extra MMS cost DKK 3.00 (US $0.54) each.
The 4Junior subscription provides an unlisted telephone number and enables parents to block access to chargeable content services, SMS and premium numbers. International calls and roaming are automatically blocked. After 300 MB of data are used, speed is choked to 128 kbps. There is also a self-service facility by which parents may monitor their children’s usage.
We believe that Telia has targeted a large market with this intelligently designed and affordable plan, and that it has accurately perceived and met a significant need. With parents concerned over children’s safety with regard to contact with strangers via phone and internet, and also concerned about excessive expenditures likely to be made by unmonitored children using smartphones, a plan like 4Junior will likely find many subscribers.
It is too late in the day, so to speak, for parents to respond to these concerns by simply denying their school-age children access to smartphones. Telia’s plan should satisfy families by providing modest amounts of data, calls and texts for use by children while preventing large costs by blocking roaming and international calls and choking off data after the limit is reached. We believe other operators in sophisticated marketplaces like Denmark would do well to emulate this thoughtful, carefully tailored, consumer-friendly approach. It will likely build confidence in the operator, promoting retention and attracting new subscribers, as well.