Mandatory seven-day trial of mobile internet service imminent

In October 2013 the National Communications Commission (NCC) announced that the Regulation Governing Mobile Communications Services will be amended by the end of 2013 to compel mobile operators to agree under their subscription contracts to provide seven days’ free internet service to subscribers for the purpose of evaluation.


 The move reflects the fact that efforts made by mobile operators to address communications and connection quality issues complained of by mobile communications subscribers (eg, unstable communications, disconnections and slow network speeds for hand-held devices) have not been recognised by the NCC. According to information disclosed by the NCC, there were still thousands of complaints in the second quarter of 2013 relating to circumstances where subscribers were subject to penalties imposed by operators when requesting to terminate a service contract due to poor network connection quality. For the past two years the NCC has been trying to persuade mobile operators to provide trial periods to subscribers to reduce consumption disputes.

According to the NCC’s plan, consumers will have the right to request a minimum seven-day free trial of an internet service before entering into a contract with the mobile operator. If the free trial service is rejected by the mobile operator, or if a consumer who is dissatisfied with the actual internet service after the trial period evaluation and consequently seeks to return the SIM card faces difficulties from the mobile operator, the NCC will impose a NT$100,000 fine on the mobile operator if such circumstances are verified.

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