Comment: Thinking Of Surfing On Your iPhone Abroad? Data Charges Could Cost You Dear

The iPhone has been a success story all the way since it was launched in the UK and O2 has been particularly keen to get businesses to subscribe to the iPhonemania and take on lucrative 24-month contracts across the board.

Now, an irate O2 customer asked to investigate the way O2 charges their business customers for using the internet abroad and what we found is troubling to say the least.

The user, who asked to remain anonymous, sent us the following (amended) email.

"I thought It important to somehow let others know about how O2 and iPhone are only giving their business customers one option to add an extra data allowance abroad, that’s to subscribe to a 12 month subscription to their abroad usage which is either £10 for 10MB and £35 for 50MB. which is outrageous, especially as they are owned by Telephonica (SIC), it just doesn’t make sense.

They were not aware that the business tariff only allowed you to add the data roaming bundle for 12 months. I spent some time sitting waiting for the assistant in the shop who spent some time on the phone to head office complaining to O2. Firstly that they should be able to do this as an ‘as required bundle’, and second that they are all unaware that this is the case so they are not miss selling the product which is what is happening at the moment.

In my opinion its not that they can’t it’s more that they won’t. I have now asked for my contract to be migrated across to me to be a personal contract rather than as a business contract, that way I can add the data as required. If I were to do this as a business on a 50MB package at £35pm it will cost me £420 over the year. A tidy little earner for O2, be careful business users.

As a result of this I will now be going on holiday without any communication to my business (which is what I bought this for in the first place), may be I can claim for loss of earnings! It’s definitely worth letting others know about this. "

What other options are you left with then? Either bite the bullet and go without any bolt-ons - you will be charged £3 per MB in an EU country on a Pay As You Go basis, which means that if you plan to travel only a couple of times per year to European countries, you might be better off with without a bolt-on, especially as unused allowances cannot be carried over into subsequent months.

Below, a screen capture frrom O2's own iPhone Business T&C leaflet.