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  Reply # 1124436 8-Sep-2014 15:44
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some address would slip through the cracks, some wont.

about a year ago a lot of people that had active email address that werent linked to a broadband account or paying the fee got an email saying that the address would be closed down and if they wanted to retain it to call in.

proactivley disconnecting "orphaned" email addresses

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  Reply # 1124499 8-Sep-2014 16:36
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There have been many posts over the last few years about people asking how they can keep their xtra email addresses when they move from telecom/spark. There is nothing new or recent about them closing email accounts unless you arrange to pay to keep them when you terminate your internet accounts.

Its not sparks fault. Its in the terms and conditions.




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  Reply # 1124514 8-Sep-2014 16:46
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lowededwookie: Not from what I understand.

General practise seems to be let people continue to use their old e-mail accounts.

That being said Orcon recently cancelled my e-mail account through non-use so maybe Spark is doing the same.

Would have been nice if Spark had let people know this was going to be the case though.

Thing is it was working up until Thursday.


That would be an exception rather than the rule. Why should an ISP continue to provide free services after a user has changed to another company. Sure, an ISP may not cancel a service intially after a cusomter has moved, but that would likely be due to the deletions either being done in batches, rather than manually done at the time of cancellation. One reason why ISPs have ISP email addresses is so the customer remains with them, as otherwise they have to change their ISP email address. But lesson is to not use ISP email addresses.

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  Reply # 1124625 8-Sep-2014 18:46
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AFAIK only Orcon offered "Free Email for Life", and bloody handy it's been too!




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  Reply # 1124724 8-Sep-2014 21:42
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Lets put this into a little context

Most ISPs run their own email servers for customers.
However Spark outsources their email platform to Yahoo.

We are not sure if Yahoo pays Spark for the privilege or Spark pays Yahoo but there is a per-mailbox charge going on there for all the yahoo services that are provided with the service.

So if we assume that Spark is paying Yahoo for the email services, which were once branded Xtra Bubble when it was first launched, then Spark surely doesnt want to be paying for email hosting of inactive or ex customers.

To put it in cost terms
Yahoo probably charges a dollar a month per mailbox.

If we run our own server, with 10,000 mailboxes, its probably only going to cost about five cents per month, per mailbox.

So you can see why Spark is very proactive about closing old mailboxes.

Telstra Clear (@clear / @paradise) is another one that is known for keeping old email addresses alive years after a customer has left.
They never provided an externally accessible smtp service AFAIK so customers always had problems accessing their mailbox via a software client after switching ISPs but it usually could be done.




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  Reply # 1124734 8-Sep-2014 22:04
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raytaylor: Lets put this into a little context

Most ISPs run their own email servers for customers.
However Spark outsources their email platform to Yahoo.

We are not sure if Yahoo pays Spark for the privilege or Spark pays Yahoo but there is a per-mailbox charge going on there for all the yahoo services that are provided with the service.

So if we assume that Spark is paying Yahoo for the email services, which were once branded Xtra Bubble when it was first launched, then Spark surely doesnt want to be paying for email hosting of inactive or ex customers.

To put it in cost terms
Yahoo probably charges a dollar a month per mailbox.

If we run our own server, with 10,000 mailboxes, its probably only going to cost about five cents per month, per mailbox.

So you can see why Spark is very proactive about closing old mailboxes.

Telstra Clear (@clear / @paradise) is another one that is known for keeping old email addresses alive years after a customer has left.
They never provided an externally accessible smtp service AFAIK so customers always had problems accessing their mailbox via a software client after switching ISPs but it usually could be done.


I think it will be less that $1 per mailbox becuase each spark cusotmer can have I beleive 5-10 mailboxes. So it will likely be a fixed fee per account. Either Yahoo or Spark or both also get advertising money from yahoo web mail, which is a bit of payback. Not sure if Yahoo sell their analytics and stats. Other ISPs don't put advertising on their webmail platform, so they don't get their extra revenue stream coming in from it.

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Reply # 1124737 8-Sep-2014 22:20
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Speaking hypothetically here...

In addition to the platform costs (operating costs, back ups, monitoring etc) /licensing costs (which do add up depending on your platform of choice), you also have support costs. Whats often overlooked is that many ISP's in NZ provide customer support for their email platforms (which you don't necessarily get with your free alternatives, opting for online only interactions or no/limited support at all), this does add cost to provide (0800 numbers, call centre platforms, people etc).

If you aren't collecting any revenue then everytime someone calls about a "free" account, you're taking a big bath. Even if they don't call but still have an account open with no revenue, you still take a bath.




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  Reply # 1124739 8-Sep-2014 22:25
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cokemaster: Speaking hypothetically here...

In addition to the platform costs (operating costs, back ups, monitoring etc) /licensing costs (which do add up depending on your platform of choice), you also have support costs. Whats often overlooked is that many ISP's in NZ provide customer support for their email platforms (which you don't necessarily get with your free alternatives, opting for online only interactions or no/limited support at all), this does add cost to provide (0800 numbers, call centre platforms, people etc).

If you aren't collecting any revenue then everytime someone calls about a "free" account, you're taking a big bath. Even if they don't call but still have an account open with no revenue, you still take a bath.


Although that support is already in place for their broadband, so it isn't an additional cost, unless they are hiring additional people to support it. Phone support is really the only benefit of ISP email. I believe google do provide phone support for some of their paid hosed email services though.

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Reply # 1124741 8-Sep-2014 22:33
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If there are calls driven into Customer care, then there will definitely be a cost incurred by telephony costs and headcount (if you need to have more people than you otherwise would), even if you don't have to buy additional capacity or licenses on your call centre platforms.

Hypothetically, of course.




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  Reply # 1124755 8-Sep-2014 23:50
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cokemaster: If there are calls driven into Customer care, then there will definitely be a cost incurred by telephony costs and headcount (if you need to have more people than you otherwise would), even if you don't have to buy additional capacity or licenses on your call centre platforms.

Hypothetically, of course.


Depends if it is done inhouse or they sub contract out their support to call centres, as to whether the cost is per call. But if they subcontract out, then they would be making significant support savings anyway. But lets just say, if there wasn't the broadband service propping it up, then they would never provide phone support for the email, unless people were paying for that email. I beliwve a standalone email account would cost about $20, based on the minimum internet plan they have.

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  Reply # 1124768 9-Sep-2014 07:24
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Speaking hypothetically here again...

It doesn't really matter if I pay per fte or on a per call model, I would still incur costs that I wouldn't otherwise incur (regardless of whether it's done in or out of house). Paid products such as broadband and standalone email generally would have support considerations built into the margins which would cover these (common practice in business).




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  Reply # 1124771 9-Sep-2014 07:33
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I gave up on ISP provided email. They maybe free but the cost is too high. I switched to Outlook.command Gmail and all is good.




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BigPipe

  Reply # 1124772 9-Sep-2014 07:38
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cokemaster: Speaking hypothetically here again...

It doesn't really matter if I pay per fte or on a per call model, I would still incur costs that I wouldn't otherwise incur (regardless of whether it's done in or out of house). Paid products such as broadband and standalone email generally would have support considerations built into the margins which would cover these (common practice in business).


Correctamundo.
(Which is why we don't provide email). If we provided email, that would be an extra buck or two per customer that we couldn't spend on sweet sweet broadband. I know what I'd rather spend the money on.




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  Reply # 1124832 9-Sep-2014 10:19
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Lias: AFAIK only Orcon offered "Free Email for Life", and bloody handy it's been too!


ClearNet also offered a free email address for life - and you didn't even have to be on their network!!

I signed up for one when I was on iHug. Later ended up on ClearNet when they purchased Paradise.Net.

My ClearNet email account is still active 18 years later.

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  Reply # 1124924 9-Sep-2014 12:02
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We just advised Spark that we wished to cancel all our services at the end of the month as we are moving overseas.

The Spark support person made a point of asking us if used an *@xtra.co.nz email address as he warned us this would be cut off at exactly the sametime the rest of our services were disconnected.

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