Verizon Wireless Charging for Anti-Spam Features Offered for Free by Competitors
T-Mobile and AT&T offer services for free, while Verizon charges $2.99
Verizon Wireless has climbed on the bandwagon of providers offering anti-spam mobile features with one notable difference—it charges customers for the service.
Verizon charges $2.99 for its Caller Name ID service. This provides customers with the full name, city, and phone number of their callers, even when the person on the other end isn't in your contacts list. The provider has now added alerts to this service for suspected robocalls, spam, or fraud. Customers can also report and block such numbers.
The problem? Competitors T-Mobile and AT&T offer similar anti-spam features to their customers for free.
Worth the Cost?
The most obvious difference between Verizon's service and those of those competitors is that Verizon's allows you to see who is calling you. As Consumerist notes, however, "given that many illegal robocallers and fraudsters spoof their caller ID information to hide their actual identity and location, that information may be of limited use for people who just want a call blocker."
The Verge questions why Verizon would want to charge for a service that its customers might reasonably expect to receive for free as part of the services they already pay for: "[Y]ou might expect a cell carrier would want to offer this service for free, as a benefit of being a paying subscriber."
The outlet also points out the dubiousness of charging for this service given the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)'s proposed rules giving providers the ability to block robocalls. "So it's clear Verizon understands this is a problem," it writes, "and yet it's still withholding a remedy behind a $3-per-month paywall."
The Bottom Line
When it comes down to it, consumers have to choose for themselves whether or not it's worth it to pay for Verizon's anti-spam service. If it is, great; if not, there are alternatives available!