People who have a pending application with UKVI can experience stress, impatience, worry, or even "post-submission anxiety". So status checking has become a popular outlet. Internally, UKVI only has about three or four status indicators, so learning the status may not help that much, but it gives applicants a way to cope with the nervousness that often accompanies a pending application.
Applicants who use the various services offered by UKVI can check the status of their application. They can do this by calling or emailing the contact centre. In some premium services the applicant can also opt for SMS messages that broadcast the application status to a mobile number. Also, an applicant with a question about the rules can email their question to the contact centre and expect a reply usually in about 6 - 12 weeks. These services have been free of charge or embedded in the price of a premium service.
Question: Will applicants need to pay for these in the future?
Secondarily, high-net-worth individuals have access to special premium services like a chauffeur's waiting lounge at the consulate for their drivers and close protection specialists, or having an ECO with a visa processing mobile unit come around to their residence. They can also arrange for private VIP landing interviews at Heathrow and Gatwick. Of course these services cost, and cost dearly. Will these be increasing in the future?
Future = some time in the 1st half of 2016.
UKVI = UK Visas and Immigration, the UK Directorate responsible for issuing entry clearances (visas)