Feb 29, 2012

Posted by in From the editor, Telecoms | 12 Comments

Understanding Smart’s Anti Bill Shock

I still often get queries regarding this Anti Bill Shock feature from Smart, what it does and what’s in it for subscribers especially new owners of smartphones who stand to gain a lot from it.

To get a clearer picture of what Smart’s Anti Bill Shock can do for you, allow me to narrate a short story.

The first smartphone I handled was the Samsung Galaxy S. Back then I didn’t know that smartphones are automatically set to use mobile data when WiFi is not present. I kept on incurring charges from updating weather and receiving FB and Twitter updates until my friend told me to turn mobile data off. So I did.

Almost done with the story. The Samsung Galaxy S back then was one of the best camera phones and I use it a lot to takie event photos or product shots. One time I had to upload some photos quickly to my Dropbox so I turned on mobile data thinking it won’t take 30 minutes (10 pesos) for the upload to finish. What I didn’t know was that my data plan at that time was set to KB-based instead of time-based and I uploaded MB’s and MB’s worth of images. Imagine the shock I had when I got my bill. It was thrice the amount of what I regularly pay for my monthly postpaid plan.

That’s bill shock. Getting a ridiculous amount in your monthly phone bill just because you can’t resist playing with your new smartphone without knowing how data charges work.

What Smart’s Anti Bill Shock do is put a cap of P1,200 when your data charges reach that amount. You can still continue to surf on your phone but you will only need to pay a maximum of P1,200 for data charges for that month. You still have to pay for your regular monthly phone bill and other carrier expenses (calls, SMS, roaming, mms, etc.).

So how do you enable this Smart’s Anti Bill Shock protection?

You don’t. You will automatically have this feature when you subscribe for an iPhone Plan or Data Lite plans and on regular and consumable plans w/ Always on Packages.

Also, for Smart Bro SIM Plan 495 subscribers, there’s the anti bill shock cap of P999 on your allowable 50 hours of data use per month.

Despite Smart’s Anti Bill Shock protection, it’s still much smarter if you know how to manage your smartphone. Here are a a couple of tips you can apply once you start using a smartphone for the first time:

  • Turn off mobile data when you don’t need it or if you’re not subscribed to a data plan. It’s usually found in the Network settings of your device. Do this especially when you’re roaming unless you really, really need to connect to the internet.
  • Turn off auto-sync on your e-mail, calendar, updates, etc. if you don’t need it or if you’re usually connected via WiFi.

Smartphones are really powerful and convenient to use but it won’t be if you’re not smart enough to use it. Not unless your have wads of cash to throw around for data charges.



  1. Still not quite clear. What happens if you exceed your time or download allowance? If I understand it rightly, you can still continue data transactions, without incurring additional charges, and if so, what’s the use of a time allowance?

    • if you exceed your time allowance and still continue to use data… you won’t get billed past P1,200 FOR data consumption.

      • So, if i understand it correctly, you won’t get billed past P1,200 but still continue using data/internet, then, it’s free? =D i know that sounds ridiculous but, that’s what’s on my mind.

        • yup but take note… P1,200 for the data charges only. So if you have a monthly bill of P500. you won’t get billed past P1,700 as long as you stayed within P500 limit of your plan pagdating sa calls and text.

        • That’s also my understanding, and Calvin seems to confirm, unless I’m missing something. And given this bad head cold that’s messing with my brain, I wouldn’t be surprised if I did miss something, although the cold has forced me to concentrate more than usual. If so, I have to reiterate my question: What’s the use of time or download limits if you’re not going to be billed overage anyway? May as well go for the lowest plan, then use to the limits of your data gluttony — maybe even beyond :)

          • Ok to cite an example…
            Suppose your plan is P500 per month.

            You consumed all data allowed on your plan and exceeded 30 minutes, your bill for the month would be P510. P10/30 minute is the data charge.
            Now supposed you exceeded 150 hours on data charges… that will amount to P3000 for data so your bill for the month will be P3,500.
            With anti-bill shock, your maximum bill would be P1,700 even if you exceeded 300 hours or more.

            If you’re wondering why P1,200, that’s the price of Smart’s monthly unlimited surfing. What happens with anti-bill shock is if your overage exceeds P1,200, it will automatically subscribe you to its unlimited data plan for that month.

            Hmm clear na ba?

  2. BTW, Sun also had a no-bill-shock plan, even before the acquisition (or was that a merger??). I think Globe has one as well. Same question applies.

  3. Griswold says:

    tama pagkaintindi ko pala. basically maususubscribe ka automatically sa unli data plan nila once you reach that amount while surfing regularly.

  4. Thanks, Calvin, that’s much clearer than even Globe or Smart (including Sun) explained. Now here’s a follow-up question: is the “upgrade” permanent, or only for the current billing cycle?

    It didn’t make much sense to me at first, but then I thought that a subscriber might not enroll in the unli data because he didn’t think it worth it. For example, I mostly use my DSL so I don’t need a data plan. However, if I were to do my work in different places and I didn’t trust the “free” WiFi — say, I’m engaged in the transmission of sensitive data, e.g., dollar accounts <g> — I’d rather use my phone’s 3G (or higher) connection. I enroll only in the lowest data plan because I don’t expect to do it that often. However, circumstances force me to work regularly away from my DSL often. Then, I might go over my data plan, in which case I get a quiet upgrade to unli. OK, makes sense.

    • only for the current billing cycle and only if you go past P1,200 for data charges. if P500 lang ang over mo sa data plan, P500 lang ang extra mo na babayaran for that month.

      • Mr.Calvin so you mean to say that for example i avail the plan asus slider with pocket wifi plan 599 having 50 hours with anti-bill shock. Then i exceeded 250 hours. Considering P10/30 minute. So do i have to pay my extra charge of P500.00 or will they (smart) turn my wifi pocket plan 599 to wifi pocket plan 999 automatically?

    • sir calvin sa ginagawa mong pag explain dapat bigyan ka nang credits nang smart. :)

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