Saturday, January 29, 2011

Okay, Now I'm Getting Mad!

Some things have been pissing me off lately, and I just wanted to vent.

My 2 year contract was up on my cell phone, so I could upgrade to a newer phone if I wanted to.

I wanted.

So Jim and I went to an electronics store so I could pick out a new phone.

According to Jim, some restrictions applied. I had to choose a phone that:

a) didn't include a data plan,
b) didn't cost any additional money, and
c) wasn't an i-Phone. (Even though that's what I wanted, but the monthly cost was high, as was the additional cost.)

So my options were limited to about 5 phones. When the phones aren't in operational mode, it's hard to chose one, you know? But I finally picked one out, and after some time we were on our way.

Three weeks into using the phone and I've bee experiencing some problems. People tell me that I sound like I'm calling from a tunnel, that my voice sounds "tinney", and that I'm far away. Well, although I live in an aluminum trailer/"candominium", and outside of Phoenix, Arizona, I don't think this constitutes being far away from my family in IL and causing the "tin" sound to my voice.

So we took the phone back.

Stood in line for a few minutes. Got to the register and stood there for a little bit. Explained the problem and returned the phone. Got somebody from the phone department to help us. His name was Sean. Helpful, nerdy, almost crossing the line to being a dork. But nice.

Sean explained that this particular phone that I had purchased had been reported to having the same problems I experienced.

Huh. Imagine that.

So I hemmed and hawed and meeny-miney-moed and finally picked another phone.

Sean called the phone company to make sure there were no hidden monthly charges - NO - and we were good to go.

We stood at the register while Sean tried to kid around with his fellow co-workers - AWKWARD - and ring up our phone.


When Sean scanned the phone, a $20 monthly "texting" fee came up.

Say what?

So good ole Sean called back the phone rep and told him that he was WRONG. That indeed there WAS an extra monthly charge on this particular phone.


So back to the drawing board. We said "forget-about-it" and walked back to the line of phones.

By this time I was pretty glassy-eyed because we had been in the store about 1 1/2 hours! All the phones were looking alike.

Sean called the phone rep again and found out this interesting tidbit. It seems that AT&T is now charging a $20 monthly texting fee on 99% of their phones, WHETHER YOU TEXT OR NOT, to "help" out the customer.

This REALLY pisses me off.

Yeah, I understand if a person texts a lot, this can save them money.

But what about someone like me, who texts maybe  4 times a YEAR? $240/year for texting that you DON'T do?

Wouldn't YOU be mad?

Why not let the customer decide if they want that option?

So here's what Sean suggested.

Because I got my original phone BEFORE this new policy went into effect, he told me to get my old tinney sounding phone back. Hold it for the 30 days, then bring it back to an AT & T store. Since this phone had problems of this nature before, AT&T will handle it. They may give me a temporary phone and send my phone out to be repaired.

I just want a phone that works. That I don't have to pay unfair monthly fees. Is that asking too much?

I guess so.

Anyway, Jim and I went back to the Return section, got back my phone, and walked out of the store 2 wasted hours later.

I hope this plan works because my phone is my lifeline, like my right arm.


Have you noticed in the last few years when you go to buy things that they come in smaller packages but the price is still the same?

The latest scam is pop, soda, whatever you call it in your neck of the woods.

It used to come in a case of 24 cans.


20 cans.

For the same price.

photo courtesy of

The nerve!

This REALLY pisses me off!

I love Diet Dr. Pepper. I've been trying to wean myself off of it and drink more ice tea and water, but it sure tastes good!



Doesn't it though ? Its all getting ridiculous isn't it, I dont blame you for getting pissed off at all. Dispite it all try to have a good day !

Brian Miller said...

just sticking it to you...that sucks if there is a problem they should be able to fix it...period...and give me my 4 other dr peppers...and dont get me started on $3 gas...i might just go postal....wait they raised their rates as well...stinking stamps...

Eva Gallant said...

I love Dr. Pepper, too. But I can't do caffeine. Once in a great while when traveling, I find caffeine-free Diet Dr. Pepper, but not very often. I like caffeine-free Diet Mountain Dew, and can't find that here in Maine either!

and yes, I've noticed things getting smaller, but not the price!

Mary said...

I agree on the sodas - really ticks me off. And the stores don't even give us the option to pay more to get those 4 extra cans. I'm addicted to diet's cheaper to buy the 12 packs when they are on sale. 24 packs, err excuse me, 20 packs never go on sale.

I say the cell phone companies have taken lessons from used car dealers in trying to make our lives miserable. I DETEST when my contract is up and having to go through all the rig-a-moral (or however you spell it).

There I've gotten that all off my chest, I now feel better.


I agree Pat. Everything we have to do these days takes about three times as long as it should.
and every product I buy has gone down in size with price still going up - I swear it's a few cents a day on everything. My daughter has four kiddies, not her fault as she only planned for one. The one turned out to be triplets, natural ones, and then she got a new husband and when you get a new husband you have to get a new baby so that's how she got four. But is it ever hard keeping these guys fed. Three nine year old's and one five year old. Grocery bill at her house is out of sight.
Just know that you are not alone in the fight to survive in this crazy world.

otin said...

I haven't noticed the soda thing. I do notice when things like cereal boxes and chip bags get smaller, though.

I hate anything to do with phones service.

A New England Life said...

I have to tell you Pat, I have the iphone and absolutely LOVE it. My plan is $30 a month but my daughter has the $15 a month plan on her iPhone and it works very well for her. I can't tell you how many times we're out somewhere and want to look something up. The phone is awesome.

I say, ditch the soda (cause it's bad for you anyway) and put the money towards a better phone ; )

Lynda said...

Those lines at the phone store are totally ridiculous and I agree with you about the monthly fee. It was what kept us from going "up" one more level. We do love our touch screen phones though.
And the food thing - - - it messes up recipes, too because before you would say 1 package of this or that - - but now the package is not the same! Companies don't realize we don't like to be "fooled". It makes us angrier than a price hike.

Teresa - in the Middle Side of Life said...

I'm with "A New England Life" - get the data plan. When you're driving and want to get online, your phone is RIGHT THERE! and, you don't have to find a wi-fi spot to hook up the laptop. I love my smart phone. Not sure I'd do the iPhone, but anything with the Droid software would be good.

I do hate feeling like I've been screwed over by business though. Totally ticks me off.

Nancy said...

Phones and phone plans rank right up there with dealing with the cable companies. I'd rather go to the dentist.

I just bought some cough drops. Not only do they come in a smaller bag for the same price - the actual cough drops are smaller!

Valerie said...

The bugbear here is choclate bars which started to shrink a few years back. It's called 'trying to fool the public'
You'd be better off with a chuck-away phone than have to go through all that hassle with phone dealers.

Gail said...

I knew we had some unseen connection! Dr Pepper!!!

I am sorry but I detest phones in any form or fashion. Yes, I own a cell phone but it is only on when I need it. In fact, my message says, My phone is off, I will return your call, if I turn it on again.

Can you switch to another provider?

becky said...

Oooooooh, i know what you mean! There is always some hidden fee, and companies are always trying to "upgrade" you, ie, more money, to something you don't need. It is frustrating! I can't believe they'd try to sneak in a $20 a month fee... that seems really unethical. My mom & I have noticed how they are packaging things smaller & selling for the same price. On like everything! Mayo, Ortega green Chile , ice cream, etc. I call it the fleecing of America... they should do a 20-20 special on it. Or someone should start a blog about it & expose these money-grubbing corporations!!!

desertsandbeyond said...

Pat, here's one for you! Years ago, hubby had an 800 number for his business. I tried, for TWO YEARS, to terminate it! The phone company wouldn't even deal with me because HIS name was on the bill. He couldn't call them because he works during the week. Finally, I just quit paying for it! That got his attention as he got a notice to pay up or else! So, it took him 2 HOURS over the phone to finally resolve it and he had to pay a final bill of $130.00!!! Talk about the "run around"! I hear ya, too, on cell phones. Don't EVEN get me started!!!

Mama Zen said...

I had no idea about that texting fee! I'm going to have to check my bill.

Jen said...

That's why I have a pay as you go phone. I buy 1000 minutes for $100 and they usually last me 3 or 4 months. I'm tempted to start making all of my outgoing calls with gmail.

Carletta said...

Buying, changing mobile phones is the biggest amount of anxiety in the world!
We recently went in to change, well, not change but take one phone off (hubs sank his in a pond) anyway the next bill came and we were being charged for two seperate phones. I doubt the bill is fixed on the next go round either.
My biggest peeve is if I want a new phone I have to sign up for a two year plan. You just can't buy a new phone.
I want an iPhone!

Sunny said...

Cell phones are such a sore subject with me! Living in the 'boonies' the cell phone signal at our house is non-existant unless I stand on a chair, facing south with the phone held over my head and the window open. If I don't breath causing me to move a fraction of an inch, I maybe lucky enough to get one bar worth of signal. I have been told by the phone company that I live in a 'dead zone'. Apparently, erecting a tower, will somehow cause our town to evaporate into thin air, so the battle between town and phone company continues. Meanwhile, I'm tired of falling of the chair! Okay, so I exaggerated a bit...but not much! LOL!
☼ Sunny

Donna B said...

We have Verizon and I pay $10 a month for unlimited texting...(husband does not text, so he does not pay it) My sister wanted me to get texting on my phone...

Maybe you could change carriers??? Each company have different phones.

I love diet Dr. Pepper too. Now I drink it for "something sweet"....mostly, I drink water.

Entre Nous said...

Oh crap, I have the most VERY BASIC AT & T plan on my U-Verse and now I'm going to have to start scrutinizing my bill for that extra text charge, I don't text at all! Thanx for the heads up.

WhisperingWriter said...

That sounds like the ordeal my grandma had when she got a new cell phone. She kept saying, "But I don't text!" and she was told that all phones come with a texting plan or some nonsense. That's what she even told the workers. "That's pure and utter nonsense."

And YES, I have noticed that it's 20 cans instead of 24. I am NOT happy. I need all the caffeine I can get.

SquirrelQueen said...

I spent over a week researching before upgrading my last phone, I read every user review I could find. The $20 texting charge is too much unless you have a college student(yep, got one) who texts constantly, then it's a big savings.

I hadn't noticed the 20 cans but I have noticed eveything else getting smaller packaging and higher pricing.