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cellphone woes

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Keith_R, Mar 2, 2004.

  1. Keith_R

    Keith_R Screenwriter

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    Hey all, I got my first cell phone several months ago from US Cellular. I hooked up with a second line under a family member and got 325 minutes, life has been sweet with my phone and I'm overall happy with what I pay for each month.

    The problem now is that AT&T wireless has stepped in and bought US Cellular in our region (north FL), because of this move they are changing our plan over to a similarly priced plan that AT&T provides. Normally this wouldn't be a big deal except that in my case it means that they are down grading my minutes from 325 per month to 45 minutes per month. I think this a terrible downgrade but don't know what to do. I signed a year contract when I got my original plan through US Cell, I'm not sure if this contract sticks with the AT&T account transfer but I'd really like to get out. I heard from a Sprint salesman that the contract may not stick with the AT&T account transfer.

    Any ideas or tips? has anybody dealt with stuff like this? thanks.
     
  2. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer
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    ATT Wireless was bought up by Cingular, so I predict many changes in your future. [​IMG]
     
  3. Keith_R

    Keith_R Screenwriter

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    I heard about that, are we talking about good or bad changes?
     
  4. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

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    I've heard mixed feelings either way. Most of my friends with AT&T phones are worried.
     
  5. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    I've got ATT and I'm happy about the change to Cingular. They have a plan for the same price with the same features as my current plan, but I'll get rollover which is pretty sweet.
     
  6. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer
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    A young lady in our computer dept defected from Cingular are said it's the most screwed up organization she's ever worked for...terrible customer service system.

    She said she has no idea how in the world they will be able to handle bringing on another base of customers when they can barely take care of all the disgruntled ones Cingular has now.

    I'm hoping for a smooth transition, but something this big is bound to have hiccups.

    Rollover would be cool to have though..although I have never seen any literature stating we at ATT would be offered this feature.
     
  7. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    How about the technology, are we going to have to switch phones somehow or would they just be able to preprogram our phones, if necessary.

    I have an old Nokia 5165 cause I am with ATT's Free2Go prepaid plan and currently inactive.

    Jay
     
  8. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Well, you're probably going to run into a problem. ATT was in the process of going to an all GSM network anyway. Cingular already is GSM. The change over for ATT customers with GSM phones should (hopefully) be transparent. For ATT customers with old CDMA phones, it will likely require an upgrade at some point.
     
  9. Leila Dougan

    Leila Dougan Screenwriter

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    Keith, I'd call up AT&T and explain to them that you're in a contract and that you're supposed to get 325 minutes. Either a) they will release you from your contract or b) they will allow you to continue at 325min for the duration of the contract.

    There is an extreme amount of flexibility in the plans, *if* you ask. Or rather, demand. In any case, the customer service reps generally are allowed to make modifications and if they can't give you what you're asking for, speak to the supervisor. Somebody has the authority to keep giving you 325 min so I'd keep talking to them until you find such a person.
     
  10. chris_everett

    chris_everett Second Unit

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    They call a plan with 1/8th of the minutes similar?!? WTF?... Legally, any contract changed that much is null and void. Regardless, I'd follow Leila's excellent advice. If you give them the option of releasing you or giving you your minutes, you should be able to get them to do something without to much trouble. Also, it's worth paying a bit more to get your (next)phone from store/represenative that can give you some help when you have problems.
     
  11. Tom Keels

    Tom Keels Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm in the same boat Keith. Our US Cellular plan has 1100 anytime minutes and they are downgrading us to 400. I'm going to do exactly what Leila suggested and try it both ways and see which one they go for.
     
  12. Jeremy Little

    Jeremy Little Supporting Actor

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    Both Cingular and ATT networks are identical. They both use TDMA on the Digital side and GSM for "next generation" service. ATT never used CDMA, that is what Sprint and a few other carriers use. If you have a CDMA US Cellular phone, then you'd be in trouble either way once the takeover was complete.
     
  13. Keith_R

    Keith_R Screenwriter

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    I just got off of the phone with AT&T tech support and as it turns out some the info in the letters that they sent was incorrect. In my case, they are going to give me 295 minutes a month for a year, the downside is that I'm only covered in FL whereas I had the entire South before all of this. In my family member's case they are going to give them 575 minutes plus coverage in several other states. At this time AT&T can't do shared lines so they simply took what I was paying for the extra line and equated it to a plan. The other news is that when this conversion fully takes effect my contract will be voided which allows me a little flexibility in either keeping my current plan or going somewhere else to do business. Sprint has some sweet deals so I was considering them, any opinions of Sprint? what about Verizon?
     
  14. PhillJones

    PhillJones Second Unit

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    I'd be very surprised if they can change the terms of service and then insist that you can't get out of the contract.

    There was a similar case to this in Britain not long ago. ntl tried to raise everybody's cable rates. They were challenged and had to back down, agreeing to freeze terms and conditions during the fixed term of the contract.

    I should imagine the rules are the same here. Otherwise they could just announce that they're going to quadruple your monthly rate and give you 10 minutes a year. I believe the term is 'unfair contract'. Just talk to them, they'll cave.
     
  15. Eric Kahn

    Eric Kahn Guest

    It is really going to suck when they force me from CDMA (quality that most people can not tell from a wired home phone) to GSM and TDMA, which some of my friends have, they always sound like they are talking through 2 tin cans attached by a string
     

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