Archives for: April 2011
Almost every one signs them, virtually no one reads them. That’s right, contracts. Many people think that they’re agreeing to have service with their carrier for two years and their carrier is agreeing to provide them with service for 2 years. A glance over your contract will tell you that your carrier is actually agreeing to very little. You’re agreeing to a lot.
Although you may not see it mentioned in the agreement itself, the main thing you get out of the contract is subsidized pricing on a phone.
So what did you agree to? What did your carrier agree to for that matter?
Read on to get the less-boring-almost-as-good-as-reading-the-real-thing overview of the main points of the standard wireless customer agreement.
“Let me speak to your supervisor!” These are words that many of us have uttered at one point or another. The words may conjure up images of ineffectual entry-level customer service employees who are unempowered to resolve any “real” issues. Maybe they conjure up images of customer service employees who don’t realize just how valuable your business is when you’re asking for something. Surely a supervisor will listen to reason. Or will they?
Read on for an insider’s perspective on escalating and what it does (or doesn’t) accomplish.
Last week, Verizon Wireless carefully announced that they were going to eliminate one-year contracts as an option for their customers.
The truth of the matter is, one year contracts likely comprise of less than 1% of overall contracts. We have no real data on this, but a long observation of the business tells us that the numbers are minimal.
The problem, though, is choice.
I’m a little perplexed by AT&T’s press release on early upgrade policy. The reason I’m perplexed is because early upgrades aren’t really a part of upgrade policy. If you’re trying to do an upgrade on the website and you’re not eligible, there is no option to select “early upgrade.” A manager is able to offer them in situations where a customer needs a phone but other options aren’t available.
So if it’s an exception that can be made that’s not available in general, why is AT&T putting out press releases that they’re raising prices for early upgrades? This creates a couple of problems. Firstly it’s going to confuse people. Secondly it’s going to draw all kinds of flames from confused customers who don’t like to see the words “price increase” in any article about their cell phone service.
It is to a certain extent the nature of the wireless industry that things change frequently. This, I think, is going to be a year that things change very frequently.
Upgrade eligibility for all lines, regardless of cost, will now be 20 months.
As stated in the original article on the upgrade policy update, AT&T followed suit with Verizon and eliminated the extra discounts available for upgrades on higher cost lines. They didn’t follow suit with changing how quickly those more expensive lines became eligible and kept 13 and 18 month renewals for the more expensive lines. Well, now they have followed suit. Mirroring Verizon’s policy change from 2 months ago, all lines become eligible at 20 months no matter what plan they’re on.
Early upgrade policy is also changing.
An early upgrade is something that may be offered to you if you need a phone but aren’t eligible. Early upgrades aren’t a regular part of upgrade policy. Prior to the change you would pay $200 more than the upgrade price for a smartphone or $75 more for a nonsmartphone. Those amounts have now risen to $250 and $85.