FCC Data: International Phone Rates Keep Plummeting

If you havent noticed, its a lot cheaper these days to call someone overseas.

Over approximately the last decade, the per-minute charges for international-bound calls from the United States have plummeted.

The charges to U.S. consumers have fallen 83 percent from 47 cents per minute in 2000 to 8 cents per minute in 2009, the Federal Communications Commission revealed Friday in its annual report entitled “2009 International Telecommunications Data.” The FCC said the per-minute charge fell 7.5 percent from 2008 to 2009.

What explains the precipitous decline in international phone rates over the last several years? Landline carriers indicate various reasons for the decrease in their U.S. billed minutes. The economy and competition from Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) continue to be major influences,” the FCC stated in a press release.

International U.S.-billed” traffic that is traffic primarily originating in the United States fell 2.7 percent in 2009 to $72.9 billion, down from $74.9 billion the previous year.

The FCC further noted that U.S.-billed revenues for international telephone, private line and miscellaneous services decreased collectively 10 percent from 2008 ($7.3 billion) to 2009 ($6.6 billion).

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