Mobile Operators implementing content control, but in different ways

March 28th, 2011 Tags: , , ,

Some networks, such as Vodafone, have had content control systems for some time, but due to new regulations (see here), some of the UK mobile networks have had to implement content control over the last few weeks.  O2 came up with an interesting solution, but not one that has worked well, whereas 3UK have shown some sense in their handling of a content control system.

O2 put the content block onto all contracts, forcing all traffic through a content control server.  If you pay them £1 on your credit card, they will open up the content control, and then credit your account with £2.50.  This is similar to a similar arrangement on Vodafone, but caused a lot of fuss when introduced.  However, what’s now transpires is that if you don’t pay the money, the content control server sometimes struggles to work, and a few people are reporting a worse browsing experience.

3UK went the other way; although they have enabled the content control as standard on all PAYG phones, they have not enabled it by default on any contracts (given the contract often needs a credit card to purchase the contract, and a bank account to pay the direct debit, this makes a lot of sense); if you have passed a phone contract onto someone below 18, you can contact 3UK and ask them to enable the controls though (simply send a no-cost text with the word ‘Filter’ to 33333).  In a similar way, for PAYG users you can “prove” your age by using a credit card, but another option is to go into a store and show ID proving your age; a nice sensible option and shows a little joined up thinking.

It’s important to realise that all mobile networks must implement a system, but it’s interesting to see the different implementations.

Minor update: 3UK have said the removal of the existing content control options will take up to the end of June to remove for all existing accounts.


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