Premium rate calls are calls to premium rate numbers beginning with 099, 0900, 0939 or 0944.
Premium rate numbers begin with 0900, 0939 or 0944, hence the term "900-numbers". Calls to such numbers cost more than a regular phone call. The cost of the call is paid through the network operator's invoice and the network operator then pays a service provider the part of the cost that relates to payment for the service itself.
Examples of common services that can be paid for with 900-numbers include advertising on websites like Blocket, calling a dating line, or buying virtual items in an online game on the internet.
For 900-numbers that cost more than twenty kronor, price information must be provided within ten seconds. There are two different types of billing. One means that you are charged for the time the call has been connected, i.e. price per minute. When you dial such a number, you first hear a voice that says: "This call costs x kronor per minute." If you hang up immediately, no charges will apply.
The other type of billing is called price per call. This type of service is for example used to pay for an advertisement, make a donation to a charity organization, or pay for an online game using your phone. Before such a call is connected, you initially hear a recorded voice that says: "This call costs X kronor. Do you accept the cost? Press one."
In this way, the caller is always informed of the cost of the call, if it is higher than twenty kronor.
Mass calling, or Megacall, is a service developed to handle a large volume of calls to the same number in a short period of time. It is used for example in voting, such as in Melodifestivalen, or in various types of contests.
Technically, the service works by registering the call directly when dialing these numbers, which have the prefix 099, and since the connection time is very short, there is a possibility of making many calls in a short time.
Many TV game shows have included some form of random number generator in their systems. In this way, calls are selected that are allowed to reach the program. All other calls reach a voicemail whose message usually reads something like: "Unfortunately, you did not reach program X this time, but please try again!" It is important to remember that even calls that do not reach the program, but only a voicemail, are charged at an increased rate.