IT worker Ian Dobsyn of Greater Manchester got a rude awakening when he returned from a holiday in Portugal to find a mobile phone bill from Yes Telecom for £31,500 ($62,000) on his doormat.
That’s a lot of late-night drunk calls to his ex-girlfriends back home, right? Not at all. Mr Dobsyn hardly made any calls on his phone. He did, however, decide to download an episode of TV drama Prison Break (and a few music tracks) whilst abroad, and the roaming fees added up – big time.
It is understood that Mr Dobsyn believed that Yes Telecom, a business arm of Vodafone based in Dobsyn’s hometown of Manchester, provided an unlimited usage deal to its mobile broadband customers. Not so – not only was the usage very limited indeed, it also didn’t apply overseas.
It also doesn’t say a lot for mobile broadband speeds – even at $20/minute, that data transfer took over two days to complete.
Mr Dobsyn contested the bill in court and Vodafone agreed to settle for £229 – the exact amount he would have had to pay back in the UK.
It’s not quite over for him yet, though; if further investigation reveals the episode of Prison Break to be pirated P2P copy, he might be picking up the full tab after all.