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Can you dial premium rate or shared cost numbers with Microsoft PSTN Calling Plans? It depends

This one took a while to get to the bottom of, but fortunately, the online documentation has been updated now to make it easier. My question was can users with Microsoft PSTN Calling plans, in either Skype for Business Online or Microsoft Teams, ring premium rate or shared cost numbers?

The term “premium number” is a broad term, there are a variety of “premium number” types. In the UK premium rate numbers begin 09. Call costs can be up to £3.60 and your phone company’s access charge, plus 5p to £6 per call

“Shared cost” or “Business rate” numbers generally cost less per minute than premium rate numbers, in the UK these are 0843, 0844, 0845. Call costs can be up to 7p and your phone company’s access charge. Reference https://www.gov.uk/call-charges

Each calling plan now has this detail listed on docs.microsoft.com:

France supports full premium dialling

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/skypeforbusiness/country-and-region-availability-for-audio-conferencing-and-calling-plans/availability-in-france

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The UK supports shared cost but not premium rate

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/SkypeForBusiness/country-and-region-availability-for-audio-conferencing-and-calling-plans/availability-in-the-united-kingdom-u-k

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In both cases, costs are taken out of your communications credits (your pre-paid calling credit).

What about directory enquiry numbers like 118118? 

That’s a premium rate number, so it is blocked

At this time all other countries don’t support shared cost or premium rate dialling.

Select any country from here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/SkypeForBusiness/country-and-region-availability-for-audio-conferencing-and-calling-plans/country-and-region-availability-for-audio-conferencing-and-calling-plans

  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Germany
  • Ireland
  • Netherlands
  • Spain
  • Unitised States
  • Puerto Rico

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A possible exception is Australia, which is only via Telstra. This will depend on Telstra.

Rates

From this site, you can download the rates for calling plans for each country: https://products.office.com/en-us/microsoft-teams/voice-calling

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If you select The UK you can see the rates for the shared numbers on the outbound dialling costs tab

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Other countries also have shared cost prefixes:

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I couldn’t find any specific listing for the premium rate numbers allowed in France or the costs.

As always, I’m sure Microsoft is open to feedback on this if you have specific business requirements, be sure to let them know.

About the author

Tom Arbuthnot

Tom Arbuthnot is Principal Solutions Architect at Unified Communications specialist Modality Systems. He is a Microsoft Certified Master and MVP, blogger, has a regular podcast with UCToday at tomtalks.show and is a regular speaker at events including Microsoft TechEd and Ignite. He co-runs The Microsoft UC User Group London.

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Tom Talks Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business thoughts and news