§ Sir HARRY BRITTAIN
asked the Postmaster-General whether he is aware that in the financial year 1912–13 the average revenue per telephone call of all kinds in the United Kingdom was about 1.66d., whereas in the United States of America, in the calendar year 1912, it was only 0.9d.; that in 1915 the average revenue in the United Kingdom was 2.16d., and in the United States 1.18d. per call; and in what part of the United Kingdom it is possible at present to obtain a telephone service at the approximate rate of 0.8d. per call, such being the average rate for the whole United Kingdom as stated by the Assistant-Postmaster-General?
§ Mr. PEASE
I am unable to identify any figures in the published accounts of the Post Office telephone service which would support the figures of average cost for telephone calls in the United Kingdom quoted by the hon. Member. If he will inform me how his calculations were made, I shall be happy to give him any information on the subject which is available. A comparison between the cost of mails in the United Kingdom and in the United States is difficult owing to differences in statistical between the cost of calls in. the United States many companies reckon each call 1205W originated as two, because two conversations or two exchange connections and two subscribers are concerned with each call The figure of 0.8d. per call quoted in a previous question is the average message fee paid by subscribers who pay for their calls singly or in blocks.
§ Sir H. BRITTAIN
asked the Postmaster-General the number of telephones per 1,000 of population in the United Kingdom and the United States of America, respectively, during the most recent year for which the information is available; and what was the number of calls per 1,000 of population in each country, respectively, during the same year?
§ Mr. PEASE
In 1918 the number of telephones per 1,000 inhabitants in the United States was, approximately, 130, and in the United Kingdom 19. Development was arrested in this country by the War, whereas in the United States it proceeded very rapidly up till 1917, when that country entered the War. In 1918-19 about 15,911 effective local calls were made per 1,000 inhabitants in the United Kingdom, or about 16 calls a head. In addition, one trunk call per head was made during the same period. It is difficult to make any comparison with the number of calls in the United States owing to differences in the methods of calculating calls in the two countries, but the number per 1,000 inhabitants was undoubtedly much greater in the United States.