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U.S. Cellular Provides Additional Alerts To Help Customers Avoid "Bill Shock"

CHICAGO, Oct. 17, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Following last year's commitment from major wireless carriers to help consumers avoid unexpected overage charges on their monthly bills, U.S. Cellular announced today that it has added more tools for its postpaid customers to help prevent "bill shock." U.S. Cellular customers have been receiving free voice and text overage notifications on request since 2009, and have been receiving automatic alerts when they approach and exceed the limits of their data plan since June of this year. Now customers also receive automatic alerts when they may incur international roaming charges.

The "Wireless Consumer Usage Notification Guidelines" were voluntarily agreed to by several major wireless carriers in October 2011 as part of CTIA – The Wireless Association's "Consumer Code for Wireless Service." They call for wireless carriers to provide overage alerts for voice and messaging, data, and international roaming automatically at no cost to customers. These new guidelines require each wireless carrier to provide its customers at least two of these alerts by today and all of these alerts by April 17, 2013.

"At U.S. Cellular, our goal is to create a better wireless experience for customers, and we have led the industry in providing tools for customers to help keep track of their wireless bills," said David Kimbell, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Chief Marketing Officer. "We want customers to get the most out of their wireless device and not have to worry about being surprised when opening their monthly bill. With all that our devices can do, it's important for customers to know their provider is looking out for them."

U.S. Cellular 3G and 4G LTE customers have been receiving automatic data usage alerts since June 2012. Tiered data plan customers receive these notifications for every data tier limit they approach and exceed. U.S. Cellular offers 100 MB, 300 MB, 2 GB, 5 GB and 10 GB data plans. Customers now also receive automatic alerts when they may incur charges for international usage, such as when traveling abroad or on cruise ships.

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