Special numbers are used for various reasons. Why do people use 1900 numbers for their businesses? The US, Canada and Australia use numbers with a 1900 prefix for many reasons including: online dating and chat lines, weather reports, gambling, information services, counseling, jokes, horoscopes, psychic readings, adult sex chats, competitions, health issues, gaming, technical support and much more.
We’re only going to look at three of these reasons: psychic hotlines, competitions/games and adult sex/dating/phone chats. We can see how they work and what money is made from them.
These phone numbers are set up so people can have access to certain information whenever they want it. If they read the fine print, they won’t get caught unawares when their phone bill comes in the mail.
Businesses use these numbers so they can make money from each person who uses the service. Each business pays a service provider a fee for being able to use this service but then they make a high profit for each call.
If you dial a 1900 sex chat line such as telefetish.com, you pay anything up to $2.00 per minute or a flat fee of $30+ to have a live conversation with a lady about whatever tickles your fancy.
There are also numerous dating chat lines where the conversations can range from the very mild to the extremely explicit. People get on these lines to find friends, have phone sex chats (britlips.co.uk) or even arrange dates, which can either be genuine or just for some intimate pleasure.
These businesses generally let the females ring for free and charge the males. This is because there are far more guys using the service than girls. The guys get charged per minute or a block amount. E.g. $30 for 60 minutes of talking time.
Guys believe that they’re going to chat to a live sexy young lady but once they have paid their money, they learn that the lady is much older or is actually a male pretending to be a female.
The calls get charged to your phone bill. Some businesses even go to the extent of paying ladies to keep the guys chatting so their phone bills clock up the extra dollars.
When the bill arrives, the guys quite often are shocked and embarrassed at the amount of money they actually spent, especially if they’re in a relationship and tried to do it discretely.
Many people who do psychic readings over the phone also use these numbers. Some of them are genuine and others are simply trying to entice you to spend your money so they can pocket the profit. It’s very easy to become hooked on psychic readings if you’re a believer, especially if the things they predict come true.
If their predictions are correct, it’s more likely that you’ll want to ring them again and again to keep receiving the prophecies which can be self-fulfilling anyway. There are thousands of psychics out here and they advertise live readings and/or recorded astrology predictions. You have to keep trying until you find someone reliable.
1900 numbers are useful for competitions and games. You see ads on TV or in newspapers or magazines. These ads offer you the chance to win a new car, a house, a holiday or some other enticement to get you to dial the number and leave your details. They usually have a flat rate for the call and this varies from country to country.
Popular TV shows such as American Idol and X Factor allow you to vote for your favorite performer. Avid fans of such shows ring up numerous times to vote and this all clocks up more money for the companies that do the advertising. Because fans become so engrossed in the shows, they often make a lot of calls and each one is charged at a premium rate.
It’s important to understand that the 1900 phone numbers are not covered under phone plans that give you free calls or capped rates. These numbers are excluded completely so you can’t expect to escape the cost if you wish to use them.
You can’t dial a 1900 number from a cell phone in Canada or the US because the systems are set up so that you have to use their premium priced text messaging service as well. Companies use this quite commonly for competitions to enable people to vote by texting a name to a specified number and if people could use their cell phone, it’s likely that the call cost may be reduced, depending on the person’s plan.
In Australia, you can use your cell phone but the call costs end up being significantly higher than if you were to use a landline. Individuals and businesses can choose to ban access to 1900 numbers to help keep their phone bills down. It’s a common practice for parents to put a block on these numbers to restrict their children from adding a large cost to the monthly phone bill.
Businesses and government bodies often restrict access because they don’t want employees to take advantage of them by accessing these premium rate numbers during working hours and forcing the employer to pay the hefty bill.
People who run the psychic, competitions and sex/dating chat 1900 phone numbers all have one thing in common. Their main aim is to make as much money as possible from unsuspecting members of the public. Each type of business has a specific target market but there’s definitely an overlap as well. Imagine if you were involved in all three of the services offered. Your phone bill could be astronomical.
The good news is that there is positive news about the use of 1900 numbers. Firstly, businesses can make money from the use of such numbers. Secondly, they make interactive communications possible for people wishing to use such services. Thirdly, not everyone is taken for a ride.
It’s vital that you do understand the negatives of why businesses use 1900 numbers. Then you can make an educated decision regarding the use of such a service, regardless of whether you’re a business or a consumer.
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