"What is a billing increment?"

"Billing increment" is a fancy term for how your long distance company measures your calls. Most long distance companies bill in full minute increments. We think that in the 21st century, that's absurd. Here's why...

Imagine going to a gas station and after filling your car, the pump reads 12.2 gallons. The attendant charges you for 13 gallons and responds, "We round-up all gas to the next gallon." Do you think this is outrageous? Well, long distance companies do the same thing. Full minute billing produces the same overcharge. Talk for two minutes and six seconds and you will be charged for three minutes.

This adds up over the course of a month. If every 7 minute and 6 second call is rounded up to eight minutes, after awhile you're going to be paying a lot of money for time you didn't spend on the phone!

AT&T, MCI and Sprint all say that consumers don't care whether their calls are billed in 6-second increments or 60-second increments. (However, they also won't give you the option of showing them that they're wrong. You can't ask for 6-second billing, since they don't offer it.)

We think you'll like 6-second billing, which means that your talk time is rounded to the next tenth of a minute. With this type of billing, you can expect to save an additional 10% - 20% on your total phone bill.

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