No change to BlackBerry service says Qtel

Some customers incorrectly billed owing to system error, says Qtel
Qtel says that a systems error meant some customers were not being billed for exceeding weekly data allocations on the Hala BlackBerry service package
Qtel says that a systems error meant some customers were not being billed for exceeding weekly data allocations on the Hala BlackBerry service package

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Qtel has not changed its tariffs or policies for its BlackBerry service, the operator has said in a statement, but rather discovered that some customers had not been billed for data usage, leading to unexpected bills.

The telco had been accused yesterday by regulator ictQatar of sending out "confusing and/or incorrect information" to customers of its Hala BlackBerry service, after some customers complained of unexpected charges.

The operator said that in the course of a systems upgrade, it found that a number of customers had exceeded their data allocation, which would normally incur an extra per MB charge, but were not being billed for the additional data. The system error was rectified, said Qtel, resulting in some customers receiving an unexpected charge.

The Hala service offers a weekly data allowance of 250MB for a set rate of QR15 per week ($4.1), with additional data usage charged at QR0.55 per MB.

Qtel says it will now refund those customers who were billed unexpectedly, and will not apply billing for usage over the 250MB limit for any of its customers, until 12th June.

A statement from Qtel said: "Qtel apologises for any inconvenience caused by the unexpected charges, and has put processes in place to ensure the issue doesn't happen again.

"In-line with Qtel's Customer Charter, those BlackBerry customers who were charged for excess data consumption over the past week will have that credit restored to their account. Furthermore, this compensation for usage beyond the 250 MB data allowance will be applied through to Monday, 11 June 2012. From 12 June 2012, excess usage charges will be applied as per the published tariff of QR0.55 per MB."

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