## Calculating cell phone minutes

Here is an interesting question from one of our readers.

I was wondering, in a cell phone minute how much of it would be a real clock minute? For example, 400 cell phone minutes won’t be like 400 minutes that we see on a watch or a clock. I can’t really explain myself. What I’m trying to say is how are minutes used on cellphones because if they are not like real time minutes, what is the value of one cell phone minute in real time value?

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### 12 Responses to “Calculating cell phone minutes”

• Neil says:

A cell phone minute is the same length of time as a real minute. However, all major cell phone providers "round up", usually per call.

So let’s say you have a month with three phone calls that looks like this:
Call 1: 16 minutes, 31 seconds
Call 2: 8 minutes 1 second

Your total bill for that month will be 17 + 9 = 26 minutes used.

The rounding is different per cell phone provider, though – I’d call your individual company to find out. Some companies round to the nearest 15 seconds or 30 seconds per call, rather than whole minute. I’m not aware of any plans that don’t round at all.

Also, at least with my plan, "free nights and weekends" start when you BEGIN your call. So if your free nights start at 9pm, and you start a three hour phone call at 8:30, you’ll be charged a full 180 minutes – instead, if you hang up at nine and call back, you’ll only be charged 30 minutes. Weird, but it works for me on T-Mobile.

The other side works too, btw. If I make a 5-hour call at 4 in the morning, the whole thing counts as nighttime minutes, and is free.

Hope this helps!

• kcracer1 says:

they are real time minutes.

• Me.=) says:

one cell phone minute counts as anything on a regular clock that is one minute or below, because they don’t round to seconds.

• bookworm9284 says:

anything from 1 second to 1 actual minute is a "cell phone minute"

• -+-|oNe|-+- says:

one call is one cell phone minute they round it up to the nearest minute. So if you make 2 calls and they arent both 1 minute long but less than they will round it to 1 minute. so if u make 400 calls than your minutes would all be used up.

• tsopolly says:

Technically, one cell phone minute equals 60 seonds, however, if you make a phone call and either talk less than a minue or not exactly to the end of a minute, the time is rounded up. So, actually, you can be charged one minute for a 32 second call.

• Gypsy says:

well try breaking it down like this… 400 minutes equals 6.66667 hours of talk time…

take your minutes total, divide by 60 (minutes per hour) and you will have your total talk time… it is a sucky way to have to do it, but it works.

• josh_mcculley says:

a minute on a cell phone starts the second you hear ringing on the other end of the line. If you only talk for 10 seconds, it counts as a minute. If you talk for 50 seconds, it counts a minute. As soon as you hear the ringing, it counts. I’ve worked for cell phone companies for years and had to answer that question many times. It was my pleasure. Have a good day.

• Max2 says:

The cellular phone system is just like a computer with an internal clock. A minute is a minute – 60 seconds, no less no more. All TELCO’s round up.

• D Hayes says:

Cell phone minutes are like most calling card minutes. They all round UP regardless of how long you are actually on the phone.

We all know 60 seconds = one minute. It does in Cell Phone Land too – HOWEVER – for BILLING purposes -
If you are on the phone 61 seconds – in Cell Phone Land you are on the phone 2 minutes.
If you are on the phone 59 seconds – you are on the phone 1 minute.
If you are on the phone 1 second – you are on the phone 1 minute.
If you are on the phone 3 seconds – you are on the phone 1 minute.
If you are on the phone 60 seconds and 5 nanoseconds – if the computer can compute those nanoseconds – you are on the phone 2 minutes in Cell Phone Land.

Blame the Billing Fairy.

• muskokastan says:

If your in a cell time drags on, so one second is like a minute. The solution is not to be in a cell. Therefor don’t break the law and you won’t be in a cell.

• leftygirl_75 says:

do what??? a minute is a minute

Cellphones