AT&T has done me wrong. Given the number of times that I have defended their honor in the past it is just really a miserable way to treat me. I am henceforth recanting all my previous positive comments or even excusing questionable behavior on their part and make this recantation retro-active. In case you did not notice they have gotten a little bit under my skin the last week or so, but it was manageable up until earlier this evening (Friday). At the point that Frank, the customer service guy started shaking his head in a negative fashion at the AT&T store I knew I was going to be pissed off about the whole situation. A long story made short follows…
Quick back ground. My wife has an AT&T phone on contract on an account that is shared with another person. I have had a pay as you go phone with AT&T – largely because after the office suspended providing the phones I was not completely sure what provider I really wanted to use. I have at various times considered switching and I have also strongly looked into a couple of smart phones over the past year or so. However, nothing has just gotten me hooked so much that I felt motivated to move one way or the other – but if I had not having a contractual obligation would have been a plus.
Moving along, after some checking into the situation a bit, it was clear that my phone charges would go down by about $20, or maybe even pushing $30 a month if I joined into a family plan. By splitting the cost two ways instead of three I think it helped them as well. Bonus score, the new line got a new phone. I would not mind, but my wife really wanted one and a previous phone of hers I was using did fall into a cup of water.
Last weekend we made the call to get the process started. I did my short part and then let them have at it. It apparently took forever, as I mowed the back yard (at that location) and they were still on the phone. But the line was added, I was going to be able to retain my number despite the web saying it was problematic. The CSR said I would just have to take it to an AT&T store when I got the phone. My wife did not get the phone she was actually wanting, as it was out of stock, but given the things she wanted (specifically a full scree, slide out ‘qwerty’ keyboard) the CSR said she would suggest a specific phone.
Dismay was had when later, looking on-line, the big thing that was desired (qwerty) was NOT on the phone that the CSR had recommended at all. A few calls the next day and a different CSR assured us that it would not be a problem to exchange it at the store once it arrived when we were going in to change the number over anyway from the temporarily assigned number to the one I have been using for the last year.
The phone arrived yesterday and we got it handed off to us earlier today (Friday). We went upstream against traffic to the AT&T store. First question about changing the number, which was my first (and really only question back last Saturday) and the afore-mentioned Frank said it could not be done. Then, he would not even attempt to do it, because the third person, whose the main person on the account was not present. Additionally, nothing could be done about exchanging the phone without them. So we are out an hour of time, the round trip in fuel, and Frank was just an ass. Sorry, there is no way around that or putting it politely.
Now my bigger complaint is against the original CSR though. Who, signed me up on the contract by basically telling me something could be done that can not. She had to know it could not be done, according to Frank that is, but leaves it to the face to face person to share that. Frankly, if I had known I could not change the number I would have probably stuck with what I had previously, despite the higher cost. As the changing over everything on the number is just a pain in the behind end.
I suppose, the one good thing out of all this is the wife seems somewhat happy with the new phone after using it this evening. Which means we do not have to deal with the folks at AT&T anymore for the time being. There is a phone out there that she really likes and in the next few weeks I think she will get one from eBay and that phone will just be a backup anyway. Good thing they have me hooked for two years or I would be out despite the fact that most everyone I know uses AT&T. Of course that reminds me why was I staying non-contractual. Anyway, letting off the steam here makes me feel a bit better about it and I guess I will let it go at this point given the limited choices otherwise.
** – Image from mitchnetzer.blogspot.com