By Patrick Avenell

Optus and Vodafone are both out to make consumers happy, with the two telcos issuing unrelated releases outlining new initiatives.

The focus at Optus is on preventing billshock – the distress caused by high and unexpected mobile costs.

Key features of the new plan include notifying consumers as soon as Optus notices that data roaming is happening and informing data roamers each time they use 15MB.

For users in Australia, Optus consumer cap plan consumers will be alerted once they have exceeded 80 per cent of their voice or data plan and postpaid consumers will be alerted if they have used more $20 worth of data or calls not included their cap.

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Meanwhile, at Vodafone, the much maligned telco has affirmed its commitment to make plans easier to understand.

“We are seeking to strike the right balance between giving our customers a good selection of plans that allow them to choose the right plan for their needs, while not putting so many variations of plans into the market that it makes the decision-making process confusing,” said a spokesperson.

In customer service news, Vodafone reports that it has added 300 additional staff to its call centres and empowered “customer-facing” staff to resolve conflicts without having to kick it up to a manager.