Thursday, January 13, 2011

Rethink possible...or AT&T

In case you missed it, which you probably did, I moved into the smart phone realm in November.

I had wanted one for a long time. I could talk, text, get on the internet, play games and oh so much more.

Previously, I was with Verizon. But I could get on a plan with my wife on AT&T for a lot cheaper even though I had some worries about AT&T because I heard the customer service was el stinko.

So I researched the heck out of the smart phones and it got to the point where I had brain freeze. The choices were too much. Several of my friends had the iPhone (which in case you have been hidden out in a cave or got struck by the vaunted Poteau Mountain meteor, is now available through Verizon).

I decided to go with the iPhone3, the later version but not the iPhone4 to try and save bucks. That was when I ran into problems. I could have actually bought one at an AT&T store in Fort Smith but the sales person was a tad bit pushy and tried to sell me every known apparatus that would work with the phone.

I am not big on pushy sales people and decided to go somewhere else. Nobody else had them in stock. Drats. So my contract with Verizon was finally over and I could get a new phone!

Since I could not get the iPhone 3, I finally decided to go with a Windows phone, a LG Optima. It seemed fairly easy to operate and despite the outrageous cost, I took the plunge.

I played with the phone fairly often for the first couple of days and loaded up some apps. One of the main reasons I wanted a “smart” phone was so I could get on the internet and update the Journal’s Facebook page.

The first game I went to was at Wister. I quickly figured out that public schools were not exactly cool with people using their wireless connection to get on Facebook. I thought that might just be Wister. Uh, wrong. Plus the service in most gyms is not good, which never seemed to be a problem with Verizon.

I did sign up so that I could text in updates to Facebook for the Journal, which is apparently the only advantage to going with AT&T instead of Verizon.

Also, I quickly figured out that I mainly used the phone for talking and texting, which is what I did with my old phone. I tried to watch a movie on the phone once and although this phone is twice the size (and weight) of my old one, the screen isn’t big enough for my aging eyes and I got a headache.

None of the apps really interested me, aside from the weather one. Prior to getting the phone, I was a little disturbed that I could not have unlimited internet. Now I realized that the $25 option was even more than I use. If I was going to use the internet, I could always use the one at home.

But then, problems hit. Seriously. The phone’s battery, which I had no problem with for the first month and a half, started dying by late afternoon. Each day, it died earlier.

I went by the store where I bought the phone at lunch. I saw the phone I purchased for $200 less than two months ago was now $99. Argh. They couldn’t help me because I did not have the last four numbers of the wife’s social security number.

I came back to the store a couple of days later packing those vital four numbers. It took most of my lunch hour and nothing was accomplished. The next day, I called customer service for AT&T.

I talked to one person I could barely understand for some 20 minutes and he finally decided that I needed a new battery. Really? You think?

He transferred me to the warranty division. After talking to another customer service rep for at least 10 minutes, she decided I needed a new battery also. Great. You can’t slip anything by these people.

But…she said they did not have any batteries in stock. She called LG and several minutes later, came back on the line and said I would need to send in the battery so they can look it over.

Okay, but there was one fairly large problem. I told her that wouldn’t work. “Why?” she asked. I wouldn’t have a phone. She asked if I had a spare AT&T phone to use. Sure, I keep one in my back pocket just for emergencies. I told her no and they either needed to get me a new battery or a new phone.

She couldn’t do that and finally (to get rid of me), said I would need to go to the store where I purchased the phone to get a new battery. Great idea! When I went there before as you may recall, they called customer service and took up my whole lunch hour and couldn’t get anything done.

But I tried again. I was informed by a rep at the store that I would have to get the problem taken care of by calling AT&T. You know, the same company which said the store would have to solve my problem.

Now the battery is dying at approximately 2 p.m. after a full charge. Maybe it is time to call AT&T and get the runaround from somebody who barely speaks English again. AT&T's slogan is "Rethink possible". Maybe it should say "Rethink going with AT&T".


  1. Now I know why I don't even bother with a cellphone.

  2. I am one of those people prone to headaches, migraine and colds. Usually, my first recourse is White Flower Embrocation (, also called White Flower Oil