I hate AT&T!

DSC_0001

I've spent the last 1.5 hours in circular conversations with various customer service people at AT&T and now I have a headache. And I'm very, very cranky. This is mom's phone. It's a pretty shade of red and that is the only good thing I can say about it.

This phone has never worked well for her and lately it has hardly worked at all. The AT&T folks told her it was a simple phone (perfect for her!) when she bought it. It's not. I'm pretty tech-savvy and I can't figure out how to turn off the music (which comes on by itself at odd times). I suppose I'm way spoiled by my iPhone but seriously, if I can't figure this stupid phone out how can I expect mom too?

DSC_0002

It should be easy to use but, especially for mom, there are just too many things that happen when you push the various buttons. She needs a plain phone. Her physician (and my friend), Helen Schulze, told her she needed a Jitterbug. Now, not later. I heartily agree. It looks perfect. AT&T has nothing remotely like it. 

So this afternoon I went to the AT&T store in Sherman and the poor kid (JT) who helped me (and he was nice) got stuck with an increasingly irritated me. The thing is, mom's phone really doesn't turn on half the time. I've seen it not work. She has tried to call and couldn't. It's defective.

She has 4 months left on her contract and the best they could do was sell her a slightly simpler phone than this one and extend her contract for 2 more years. Even if she decided the new phone wouldn't work for her and she returned in the allotted 30 day return window of opportunity, she'd still have a 2 year contract. I hate AT&T!

I talked to the onsite supervisor. JT (who was still pleasant and trying to be helpful), called it in and talked to another supervisor, who then passed it off to another supervisor. The end result is – tough luck. The phone doesn't work, if she wants out she can pay a $75 cancellation fee. Have a nice day. 

AT&T has phones for the disabled and they let me talk to that representative. Guess what? The 'special' phone for someone that needs a simple phone is the same one I had already told them wouldn't work. I about lost it.

I left the store with mom's defective phone. She said, OK, let's cancel it and just pay the fee. So I called them and darned if that person didn't try to talk me into the 'simple' phone. I didn't swear and I did try to be nice but I'll bet I sounded as incredibly irritated as I was. And still am. But it's cancelled now.

Cell companies, cable companies… they get away with this stuff because there's not a lot of options for us as consumers. I would move to Verizon in a heartbeat after today. Does anyone know how Verizon coverage is in Sherman, TX? And can anyone tell me if their customer service is any better or would I be trading the devil I know for pretty much the same devil? If I do switch, I will have to wait until my contract is up and Steve and I would both have to have new iPhones that worked on the Verizon network but I'm mad enough that that looks like an OK option. I'm tired of rewarding AT&T with my money.

So, deep breath, and back to work.

29 thoughts on “I hate AT&T!

  1. We have a Verizon account here in Duncan….same story as with AT&T. My phone is possessed but it’s my tough luck. I think the companies are all the same.

    Like

  2. We switched from AT&T to Verizon years ago, because their service areas were much better. We get good reception pretty much everywhere (FL and in the NC mountains) BUT they have the whole 2 year contract thing. “New every 2” means you can get a new phone free every 2 years, but have to renew for another 2. I’m satisfied with Verizon, but I think they are all way too expensive! The taxes alone are killers.

    Like

  3. Had almost the same problem with Verizon a while back so, good luck. I have Sprint now and so far so good, because I haven’t had any problems, yet.

    Like

  4. I think you are going to find the same thing with Verizon when it comes to policy – or worse. I had them before I went to AT&T for my iPhone and ended up with an overlap on services because I couldn’t cancel early without a $175 early-termination fee (it was only one or two months prior to the end of my contract) and I couldn’t schedule a cancellation of services, I had to actually go in the day my contract was over to terminate my service.

    Like

  5. I have not had any trouble with Verizon, but I have a simple phone and I do not do anything too fancy. I’m not a phone person/talk a lot, but I have it for emergency purposes. It works well in the high mountains of Utah where I live.

    Like

  6. I have to say, I have been pretty happy with Verizon, went with them years ago because of good coverage in the hills of Southern CA., now in Austin with seemingly good coverage. The best thing is, I have no contract and pay about $30.00 a month with a very basic plan, and very basic phone(my daughter’s hand me down)! I don’t use it much, but it works when I need it to…

    Like

  7. I have Verizon, also in Socal and have been satisfied, looking forward to moving to an iPhone in a few weeks when I finally sit down and order it. My husband has had a jitterbug for several years now and he loves it! You do have to pay attention at least in the beginning to how you’re using the minutes, they carry over in some manner but after a while he simply dropped the amount of minutes on his plan. The only thing I don’t like about it is he can’t get texts and sometimes thats oh so convenient! And I think if your Mom used the Jitterbug operator alot it would use up minutes, I think they charge you for those calls too. But he loves the phone and it works well.

    Like

  8. I used to have a verizon phone and was under contract. I saw a local ad for a company called Page Plus, which is a pay as you go phone service. My boyfriend’s nephew works at one of the stores that carries the Page Plus accounts and phones, and we went in to speak with him. No contract required – and for just under 30 a month I have 1200 talk minutes and 3000 texts. They also have an unlimited plan for a little more – maybe 45 a month (which is about what I was paying for the basic phone service with 750 minutes at verizon and no texting). I figured I’d give it a shot – just as a way to get out of the verizon contract – and if I wasn’t happy I’d go back to one of the full-service providers. I’ve had the phone and service for the past 5 months – and haven’t come close to the allotted minutes or texts – and have been quite pleased with the service!! My boyfriend just recently switched over to the same service and got a smart phone (mine is not so smart!) and seems to happy with that one as well!!

    Like

  9. Haven’t heard about Jitterbug but it sounds interesting. I think all the carriers are about the same-hard to use phones and those darn 2-year contracts to deal with. Just wondering-have you contacted AARP? Just maybe there is something they can recommend and that might be cheaper. Gotten good help from them before. At this point, it might be worth it.

    Like

  10. I’ve been on Verizon for YEARS – more than a decade, at least. I’ve had great customer service with their cell phone division (their landline and internet is another story). I experience very few outages and dead zones but I’ve never been to Texas. One other thing I’ve found is that it’s possible to go on the internet and buy a phone, like on eBay, that works for you better. The stores generally only have the newest/latest/greatest products they want to sell you and lots of people have older, simpler models they want to sell when they upgrade. Just be sure the seller is legit because you can’t activate a phone that’s been reported stolen. We’ve done this a lot for the kids when they lose or break a phone and it’s too expensive to replace. There are also no-contract phone plans like Cricket which might be worth looking into.

    Like

  11. I’m not a techie, under 45 yrs old, and once worked in library reference, therefore, I am not interested in being at a phone’s beck and call so someone can tell me they are driving from here to there. In my job I couldn’t have a cell phone in the reading room (plus, I was working).
    So, years ago my DH got me a pay as you go plan from Verizon. I pay $15.99/month. When I travel, I use it, I don’t text – in a normal week, I use it about 2 days. The plan has changed a bit – there is now a daily fee of $1.99 – talk all you want that day for $1.99. If I need more time, then pay another $15.99. Our home phone is Ooma – internet phone with free long distance.
    The phone is not difficult but it also isn’t super simple. We got my last one at Wal-Mart. It’s a Verizon phone and flips and has the small keyboard and a camera.

    Like

  12. I was a US Cellular customer since 1995 and can say only good about the company–except that they don’t have iPhones. So I switched to Verizon for the iPhone and paid the fee to cancel my contract early. Verizon has extra fees for everything, but coverage is wonderful.
    The kids all buy pay-as-you-use phones and just reload minutes as appropriate. No coverage problems, but the phones are cheap enough to try them and toss them if they don’t work. Try a discount store instead of a phone store.

    Like

  13. I think you will find the same story with Verizon. My Mother has that and I went round and round with them trying to get the policy in her name or cancelled after my Dad died. I even took his death certificate in. It was a nightmare of customer service and we ended up just canceling the service.

    Like

  14. Must be the week for ATT. I spent 2-1/2 hours trying to transfer my mom’s ATT bills to my address so I could put them on autopay and receive the paper bills myself. She’s 90 and not keeping up with the bill payments any more. It took five people to manage this. I got through most of my story and information with one until we got to the address: “Ohio – oh, I don’t take care of Ohio accounts. I’ll have to transfer you.” Are you kidding me? If you only do certain states, say so at the beginning!

    Like

  15. I want to say thank you to everyone who replied. Moms going to be looking at at least a couple of very simple phones that dont require a contract. I suppose Ill stay with AT&T and hope to only have to talk to them rarely. Very rarely.

    Like

  16. We have had Verizon for about 9 years. No problems here in Georgetown, TX. The one thing I do know about Verizon is that you need to go to a Verizon Corporate store and not one of the franchise stores. The corporate stores seem to be a lot easier to work with than the franchise stores. Good luck. We have one smart phone and one simple phone that is easy to use – sorry don’t know the name of it and they may not have that one anymore.

    Like

  17. Becky,
    Check out a company called Consumer Cellular. They are in Portland Oregon and there is no contract ever! I live in Washington and have great service. It costs nothing to talk to them and my simple, simple flip phone was free. They are in line too.
    Mary

    Like

  18. We had Alltel for years and loved it. No problems at all. Verizon took over and we have had nothing but trouble. I don’t like them at all but around here (SC) they are the best there is. Which isn’t saying much at all.

    Like

  19. I have that same phone, has never worked for me well either. When my contract is up with ATT we are out…..went to WalMart and purchased my husband a Net10 phone for $29.88, and for 750 minutes a month – cost $25.00. Easy to operate and much lower cost. I studied all the phones from WalMart and this was the best for the cost. I plan to do the same when my contract is up…..I too hate ATT. gloria g. Hemingway, SC

    Like

  20. I am right there with you when it comes to Cell phones and At&t. I hate them both!!!! I have a simple GO phone and use less than a $100.00 in calls a YEAR!!!
    By the way, just noticed you are from OK too. I’m just north of Tulsa, in Skiatook.

    Like

  21. I, too, hate AT&T.
    I don’t have their wireless service, I actually still have a land line. Last May I called to see if we could change plans so we could save a little money…silly me…we had our old phone number for over 25 years but I was weak and let the Customer Service rep convince me that I would save $40 a month if I change our number and took the “all distance plan”.
    They switched us over and as a result I lost voice mail for 5 days, lost our Internet service for 3 days, and every month since I’ve had to call to have my bill adjusted because they keep charging me toll calls…they are happy to make the adjustment but the charges still show up on my bill…which says I now owe them $225 for calls I should never have been charged.

    Like

  22. I have a “disposable” aka “pay as you go” Kyocera SUPER simple phone with Virgin as service provider. I’ve had it since 2005, same phone, same service. I paid about $40.00 for the phone and I pay about $20.00 (twenty!!!) every 90 days for service, depending on usage. I love it: it does exactly what I need the phone to do – make phone calls, and nothing else. Well, I can text too, which I don’t. SUPER easy to top up, my DH tops it up do from our computer using a credit card, so you could do it for your mom; you can also look at the $$ balance on the computer. In your area (I am in CA) may be a different company offering a similar product. Maybe LG? I got mine at Radio Shack, I believe Walmart also sells these. Anyway, I hate the big companies with their 2 year contracts, I don’t understand why more people don’t use the pay as you go route.

    Like

  23. Whatever you do, DO NOT go to Verizon!!!!They are awful. Poor, poor customer service. They want to sign you on, not give you all the information you need, and then tell you “Oh well.” when you need help. They did the same thing to me as ATT did to you with your mother’s phone. Please, please do NOT go to them!!!!!!!

    Like

  24. Here in Devine texas we started out with Pocket. But Cricket took over. But there is NO contract for the phone.I really liked it, as long as I stay in Texas. Hope this helped.

    Like

  25. When it seems that things can’t be worse, AT&T can figure out a way. AT&T did not change out billing address when we moved in July of 2011, then in February of 2012 on the second or third, our DSL service stopped working. It was a week later after high blood pressure and 4 hours on the phone that the address change did not occur, they disconnected because the billing did not match the service. Ok then we were told that DSL would not work at our location (funny worked for 7 months), we were forced to go to the uverse service, by this time it was the 17th of February, we then had to wait until March 2nd, with the service not working until the 7th. Well according to the folks we spoke with we would not be billed for the month of missed service, what a lie, they withdrew the monthly amount, with not credit for the lost service that was their fault. Three phone calls later we were told basically “tough luck”, no offer to look into it, each service representative wanted to know how to make it a wonderful experience, (hahahaha), it must be nice to be a legal thief…. We are out the monthly service and will probably have to close our checking account just to get them out of our pocket. So be sure to document time’s, who you spoke with and write down each and every lie that they tell you, at least you can tie up a phone line while you explain your problem, they seem to lose any information that they have and basically accuse you of trying to cheat them……If only I could…..Some day there might be a alternative in my area and I will be ditching AT&T……What a shame of a company, It’s sad when only 52% of people have a “good” experience with them, guess the other 48% just suffer…Oh well I hope I never have to call them again, only when I truly disconnect and that will probably get screwed up!!!!!!!

    Like

  26. I AGREE 100% AT&T IS REALLY A BUNCH OF FRAUDULENT IDIOTS!
    EVERYONE SHOULD FILE FORMAL COMPLAINTS TO THE FCC, BBB AND CONSUMER AFFAIRS!!!!!
    TO ALL THE COMMENTS BAD MOUTHING OTHER COMPANIES TO TRY AND LESSEN THE BLOWS AT&T IS TAKING HERE AND EVERYWHERE (CONSUMER REPORTS AND FACEBOOK HAVE NEARLY IDENTICAL REVIEWS OF THESE IDIOTS) AND TELLING YOU THAT YOU ONLY PAY THIS AND THAT AND YOU ARE CRYING OVER .99 CENTS OF SERVICE— THESE ARE AT&T TROLLS WORKING ON BEHALF OF AT&SHIT YES, CLEARLY THEY WORK FOR AT&T, WE’RE ALL ON TO YOU!!!!!!
    AT&T IS UNPROFESSIONAL AND CLASSLESS!!!!!!!
    I CAN’T TELL IF THEY LOOK TO HIRE STUPID PEOPLE OR THEIR MANAGEMENT SCRIPTS THE STUPIDITY AND FORCES THE EMPLOYEES TO SOUND STUPID!!!!!!!!!
    THOSE ARE NOT TAXES—LOOK CLOSER AND YOU WILL SEE THEIR DISCLAIMER STATING THAT THESE “TAXES” ARE NOT GOVERNMENTAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    EITHER WAY THE EXPERIENCE IS TERRIBLE!!!!!!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.