Mobile phone operator One-2-One has angrily responded to an EU claim that it snubbed a request to justify 'loyalty locks', which tie customers into a single-operator service.
Three months ago the EU wrote to the four major mobile phone companies warning that the system of loyalty locks was unfair and asking them to explain their actions. This week it singled out Orange and One-2-One for not providing satisfactory replies to its warning letters.
But a One-2-One spokesperson said: ?We actually visited the EU to explain our system to them. They seemed satisfied. We were waiting for them to publish a guideline on loyalty locks for us to comment on.? She said the British system was unique in Europe because suppliers provided phones at a heavily discounted price.
?The only way to really make the money back was to have a some sort of lock-in system,? she said.
The EU was concerned because it feared that users would buy cheap phones in the UK and take them to other European countries where there were no lock-ins.
Orange was unable to explain why it had not replied to the EU request for information.
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