TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: DO NOT! DO NOT Use Cingular Go Phone

Re: DO NOT! DO NOT Use Cingular Go Phone
Mon, 04 Jul 2005 03:07:29 -0700

shwekhaw wrote:

> DO NOT USE CINGULAR GO PHONE!! I had a lot of problems with GO Phone
> and know another two people who are getting ripped off.

> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: You could have been telling my story. I
> have _two_ Cingular phones; the one works okay with an _Independence,
> KS_ 620-330 number. The other phone is a former AT&T (now Cingular
> Prepaid phone I think it is called 'Free to Go'.) Both phones are the
> older digital Nokia 5165 phones, the difference is only that one is
> prepaid via AT&T, the other is a 'regular' cell phone. Starting Friday,
> the prepaid phone quit fuctioning. It has a Wichita KS 316-841 number
> on it, with, I might add, twenty dollars in credit. Cingular customer
> service, which appears to be located in India these days, absolutely
> insisted I could not have a prepaid wireless phone since they had no
> wireless coverage in my area. They said "as soon as you get back in
> the Wichita area, your phone will start working again." I asked them
> if that was so, then (if the towers could not reach me) why wasn't
> voice mail kicking in to take the messages? They just kept repeating
> their stupid answer: because we have no service in your area. I
> finally said 'being an ignorant ##*@ based in your native land
> somewhere, you probably would not know much about our cell phones
> here.' They had just a few minutes earlier taken a twenty five dollar
> payment from my credit card. Those Cingular/AT&T/SBC customer service
> reps are so incredibly stupid it is beyond my comprehension. I said
> well, if you do not have service in my area, then please arrange to
> refund the twenty dollars you just now took on my account. And
> wouldn't you know it, the sweet dear little Indian lady who referred
> to herself as 'employee ID 627' insisted 'we do not give any refunds
> on prepaid service'. You will this time, I told her, Small Claims
> Court here in Montgomery County is just four block down the street
> from my house, and I do not have to sue you in California or Texas
> or India or wherever, _I just sue your local resale agent here in
> Independence_. Hopefully your superiors will screw up and not make
> any response to the suit. She finally came up with a post office
> box address (no phone nor fax nor email address available) for some
> entity called 'Cingular Free to Go' in Anaheim Hills, CA and I fired
> off a letter to them yesterday making demand for the return of my
> money _or_ preferably, a working phone with my 316-841 number since
> someone else told me the only service they will now initiate in
> 620 is GSM. I will tell you, if Ignorance was Bliss, then Cingular
> customer service people would be the happiest in the world. PAT]

I have been a Cingular customer for about 19 months now. I have the
lowest monthly plan that includes rollover minutes. I just upgraded
my phone. Although I was not eligible they graciously allowed the
upgrade since I also bought a Bluetooth wireless headset. That was
done in-person in a company store (I have learned to avoid agency
stores like the plague and the Cingular web site makes that
distinction in the store selection page.

I also have recently had several phone contacts with customer service
and each contact has been pleasant and helpful. After the last
contact a survey organization contacted me to question me about my
satisfaction with the latest phone contact to customer service.

I have found Cingular's customer service to be far better than when I
signed on a year and a half ago.

Perhaps they don't like to deal with pay-as-you-go or prepaid phones.

But, my experience has been good, and I go in thinking they will be

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Well, here an an interesting anomaly.
My experience with Cingular Wireless _on the 'regular service' side_
is also very good. A couple minor items of confusion now and then;
(my service is billed and paid for in the Chicago area, but
permanently used in the Tulsa market. Some of the reps seem to have
a hard time understanding _why_ I am paid for out of Chicago, but with
a 'Tulsa Market' [of which s.e. Kansas is part] area 620 number.) Once
we deal with that, then they otherwise are very effecient. But it is
the _prepaid_ side I have hassles with.

Now I would think that a prepaid customer was the best possible
customer; no credit problems for the company to worry about; they
probably have a few million dollars in effect 'loaned' to them on a
revolving basis each day that they do not yet have to account for. As
with the bank float time on money orders: Amex and others have your
money for a few days to use as they wish until the money order gets
presented for payment. I don't know about you, but if one or more
persons wanted to loan me a few million dollars -- for a couple days,
or even several hours -- I'd be quite happy, and would use that
interest-free loan to make a lot more money, even in just a day or
so. I would not hassle customers like that; I would encourage more
of them. But the greedy money order people want a 'handling fee' for
their thing, and the cellular phone companies tack on all kinds of
stipulations on their prepaid service also. How many of you get paid
in advance for a job you are supposed to do, which your employer may
not even ask for. How many of you are in a position to refuse to
return such money (under those paid for in advance conditions) in the
event your employer changes his mind? To add insult to injury, the
cell phone people even route their prepaid customers through some
idiot service bureau in an international place. PAT]

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