0800 Wizard App Scores 200,000 Downloads

Telecoms provider Skycom has announced that its 0800 Wizard app has now been downloaded 200,000 times. 

The app provides users with an alternative 01 or 02 number when calling non-geographic numbers (0800, 0500, or 0808 for example). Such number are free or local-rate from landline phones, but can rack up huge bills as mobile operators charge high rates to call them. 

James Barrington-Brown, MD at Skycom, says: “Orange and T-Mobile this week announced reduced fees for calling 0800 numbers via their networks. While this is a step in the right direction for consumers, it is still a far cry from the freephone concept such numbers are meant to represent.”

Vodafone charges 35p per minute; O2 charges 20.4p per minute; Three charges 15p per minute; and under their new revised pricing Orange and T-Mobile charge 7.4p per minute for calls to 0800 freephone numbers.

According to figure from Ofcom, consumers pay around £1.9bn for calls to non-geographic numbers each year. 

Barrington-Brown says: “Ofcom found that as many as 63 per cent of people are not confident of the prices mobile networks charge for non-geographic numbers. Companies with freephone helplines are often disappointed that mobile networks are making a profit from what they intend to be a free service for their customers. Of particular concern is that 1 in 4 low income households have no landline phone, and so rely on their mobiles for all phone calls, including calls to freephone numbers such as their gas or electricity company helpline. Skycoms free 0800 Wizard app provides a landline alternative for any 0800 number, avoiding the hidden charges and potentially large bills of mobile networks – helping to put the free back into freephone.”

The app is available for free on iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry platforms.