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To our dear customers

attworld804

Jan 30, 2008, 11:24 AM
As a AT&T Cor Rep I would like our customers to consider the following.

If you buy a new Razr and it cost you $50 at point of sale and you get it free after rebate, do you really think that if you break it you'll get that same phone at that same price? The answer is no. That is why we always stress getting the phone insurance. You'll save yourself the headache of having to pay full retail price for that phone.

I'm saying this because it has happened quite a few times this week, especially this morning. Customer came in with a wet phone with no insurance and expected to get the razr for the same price. She even dropped "I've been a cust for 6 years." Don't get me wrong we love our customers that show that type of loyalty, but don'...
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AvgJoe

Jan 30, 2008, 12:17 PM
attworld804 said:
As a AT&T Cor Rep I would like our customers to consider the following.

If you buy a new Razr and it cost you $50 at point of sale and you get it free after rebate, do you really think that if you break it you'll get that same phone at that same price? The answer is no. That is why we always stress getting the phone insurance. You'll save yourself the headache of having to pay full retail price for that phone.

I'm saying this because it has happened quite a few times this week, especially this morning. Customer came in with a wet phone with no insurance and expected to get the razr for the same price. She even dropped "I've been a cust for 6 years." Don't get me wrong we love our customers th
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attworld804

Jan 30, 2008, 12:53 PM
You must have missed my entire point. What I'm saying is don't expect the same price you paid for a phone when you the customer dropped it in water or a toliet or whatever and expect me the sales rep to give you the same phone for teh price you paid. Ypu don't go to best Buy and expect to pay the same price for a tv that was on sale a month ago and when something goes wrong with that tv expect that same tv to be the same price.
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AvgJoe

Jan 30, 2008, 1:06 PM
attworld804 said:
You must have missed my entire point. What I'm saying is don't expect the same price you paid for a phone when you the customer dropped it in water or a toliet or whatever and expect me the sales rep to give you the same phone for teh price you paid. Ypu don't go to best Buy and expect to pay the same price for a tv that was on sale a month ago and when something goes wrong with that tv expect that same tv to be the same price.


I am agreeing with you. However The carriers set them selves up for this behavior by shouting FREE phones. The public really believes they don't cost much at all. Therfore it's logical to assume they take that "education and advertising" back into the store look...
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attworld804

Jan 30, 2008, 1:11 PM
True, it was just funny this lady messed up her razr and threw a tiff when we told her that since she didn't have insurance she'd have to pay full retail, she didn't think the phone was worth $200 and some dollars but we offered her the phone at 50% off. She just wanted something for nothing and didn't like it when we didn't budge.
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primus

Jan 30, 2008, 2:29 PM
You are correct, the whole issue would go away if the US carriers did business like some of the European carriers did... and also there would be less than half the number of US customers with wireless service...

Once again, I will point out to you, you have no clue at all how the US market works compared to the rest of the world.
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AvgJoe

Jan 30, 2008, 5:00 PM
primus said:
You are correct, the whole issue would go away if the US carriers did business like some of the European carriers did... and also there would be less than half the number of US customers with wireless service...

Once again, I will point out to you, you have no clue at all how the US market works compared to the rest of the world.


Then don't bitch when customers demand "free" phones when they screw up.

I could care less if HALF the country uses wireless service or not. I buy my phones "offline" and pay for the services I use.
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texaswireless

Jan 31, 2008, 2:54 AM
You forget that U.S. consumers chose this type of "subsidized" phone approach. Back in the 90's cell phones were sold above cost without an agreement. In fact, CA law stated that carriers and retailers could not offer more than an addtional $25 discount for signing up for ANY service, let alone an agreement.

CA residents demanded they be allowed to buy heavily subsidized handsets in exchange for agreements which led many other states to follow (some states did not restrict this practice but most did).

Funny how is many cases CA now leads the nation in lawsuits against the carriers due to situations they "demanded".
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AvgJoe

Jan 31, 2008, 11:26 AM
Im sure they do. But it has become a huge advertising technique not a fine print line.

People have been programmed by the Carriers to believe the phones have no real value. Whenever something is free or low cost it automatically loses it's value.

Imagine a Stainless Steel Rolex for $500.(Which is what it is really worth) Price determines "value" in many minds. Which in turn provides the all elusive and revered "exclusivity" factor. "I have one you don't". That's what is really being sold in many cases.

Wireless carriers could stop the business of subsidized phones at anytime but I am sure they rather "subsidize" phones rather then give away services for a commitment. Not to mention selling a "Gleaming colorful Phone is a lot easie...
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texaswireless

Jan 31, 2008, 12:15 PM
Consumers made the choice. The carriers cannot move away from this model without a backlash from consumers. Some have started to offer the choice and very few a decided to go your route.
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AvgJoe

Jan 31, 2008, 12:58 PM
texaswireless said:
Consumers made the choice. The carriers cannot move away from this model without a backlash from consumers. Some have started to offer the choice and very few a decided to go your route.


I agree not many go my route and neither would I if the Carriers had the phones I wanted. I dont want to carry around more than one tool to do all the things many people pay separately for that achives similar results.

Believe me if ATT had the N82 for $300 I would have signed another couple years. I will be with them anyway (Unless Google comes out with something a lot better). They have no phones I am interested in. If they offered a rate reduction for services I would be inclined to commit. But...
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texaswireless

Jan 31, 2008, 2:39 PM
Not that many people know but they do offer a rate reduction for a 1 year agreement (for new customers anyways) versus no contract. You get MTM for free instead of $9.99. Not always a big deal but it is there.
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AvgJoe

Jan 31, 2008, 11:03 PM
texaswireless said:
Not that many people know but they do offer a rate reduction for a 1 year agreement (for new customers anyways) versus no contract. You get MTM for free instead of $9.99. Not always a big deal but it is there.


Yeah But I already have all of that from the first contract. I don't understand why they would not take that away when the contract expired creating further incentive to re-up for those who buy phones "offline" I suppose they would if there were a lot of people like me who buy unbranded unlocked phones.
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texaswireless

Feb 1, 2008, 12:36 AM
My guess is positive reward for staying on with AT&T even if you are not obligated to stay.

I can tell you if you spent some time making a few calls you might be able to get a bill credit in exchange for an agreement considering you bought your own phone. It may not be much more than $150 for a 2 year agreement but that is basically the discount they give in store off a typical phone.
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AvgJoe

Feb 1, 2008, 1:06 PM
texaswireless said:
My guess is positive reward for staying on with AT&T even if you are not obligated to stay.

I can tell you if you spent some time making a few calls you might be able to get a bill credit in exchange for an agreement considering you bought your own phone. It may not be much more than $150 for a 2 year agreement but that is basically the discount they give in store off a typical phone.

Thats interesting, However I think I will keep the option in my pocket in case ATT gets the flagship Nokias down the line.
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crackberry

Jan 31, 2008, 11:37 PM
texaswireless said:
Not that many people know but they do offer a rate reduction for a 1 year agreement (for new customers anyways) versus no contract. You get MTM for free instead of $9.99. Not always a big deal but it is there.

they have removed all plans that do not include m2m. m2m comes with all plans (post paid) regardless of contract 1,2 years or no commitment. they even started offering sim only activations.
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captainplooky

Jan 31, 2008, 1:52 PM
Is your use of consumers an euphemism for lobbyist?
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texaswireless

Jan 31, 2008, 2:43 PM
Had to check first to make sure it was you, hard to miss but the sarcasm came through loud and clear. No need to give you information, you won't care to know the truth anyways.
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captainplooky

Feb 1, 2008, 2:38 PM
texaswireless said:
No need to give you information, you won't care to know the truth anyways.


Translation: I'm speaking out of my ass.
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pepsijunky

Feb 1, 2008, 1:02 PM
good points.
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chocolateman85006

Jan 30, 2008, 12:27 PM
People are stupid! Let their stupidity make you rich!
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Shakaree

Jan 30, 2008, 1:18 PM
The problem I feel is the lack of educating by the reps themselves. Not to say you arent a good rep, but I am betting you didnt sell this customer her first phone. It was probaly some other little kid who conveniently neglected to simply educate the customer of the promotional 2 yr price and the actual price. Yes I also am a represenative for multiple companies (lol the dreaded 3rd party rep) but when I sell a phone to a customer I clearly tell them your getting this "free" phone because of a 2 yr agreement, this phone actual price is 219.87 for example, then I offer them 1 or both of our insurance policies. The end resuly is the customer is educated and understands the difference, and I also setup the customer to fall into a sales pitch on ...
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attworld804

Jan 30, 2008, 1:35 PM
I've actually made it a point to note a customers account when they decline the insurance but tell them they have 30 days to get that put on their account. I will admit there are some reps who don't do their homework and couldn't tell the difference between a PDA or a regular phone. I do however make sure cust are educated about everything when they buy a new phone and purchase service, there are no hidden fees are surprise bills with any of my customers.
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bwag717

Jan 30, 2008, 4:32 PM
I will note that in the past few months we have had only 1 free phone. That phone was only free if they got an unlimited data or text for $20. The American carriers have clearly seen the error of their ways and are raising the price of the phones. European companies were lucky because their customers were clamoring for cell phones whereas American customer only adopted them when they were free. Now the younger generation can't live without the phones and now the price will go up. Look at the current phone deals at any COR or reputable dealer and you'll see very few phones that are under $40 after rebate, unlike last year where 80% were under $40 after rebate. Remember that European carriers also include texting wether you want it or no...
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AvgJoe

Jan 30, 2008, 5:04 PM
bwag717 said:
I will note that in the past few months we have had only 1 free phone. That phone was only free if they got an unlimited data or text for $20. The American carriers have clearly seen the error of their ways and are raising the price of the phones. European companies were lucky because their customers were clamoring for cell phones whereas American customer only adopted them when they were free. Now the younger generation can't live without the phones and now the price will go up. Look at the current phone deals at any COR or reputable dealer and you'll see very few phones that are under $40 after rebate, unlike last year where 80% were under $40 after rebate. Remember that European carriers also includ
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bwag717

Jan 30, 2008, 5:29 PM
I've heard the same thing as what Primus says but I also know that with these new contracts that the carriers are offering overseas that the European carriers have seen that we have more cell phone users and that giving the phone away is a good way to get new users. I just want the reps to properly inform the customers that the price is not FREE. Avg Joe that is the biggest problem that we face as reps, which is what attworld804 was trying to explain. You obviously know what's up but other people who go in to a store (be it a dealer, COR, online, or even WALMART) are not told the rules of the deal. They just see free or cheap and assume that is the way all cellphones are getting. As for the insurance or extended warranty, I was always ...
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chocolateman85006

Jan 30, 2008, 8:22 PM
Many reps {not all, but many}, regardless of the carrier, don't care about all that. If you're not buying a line of service, they don't care about you.
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lefteyeiu2002

Jan 30, 2008, 8:48 PM
If I need a new AT&T phone, I just go to Best Buy and get a prepaid phone. They work great and you don't break the bank. :-)
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ralph_on_me

Jan 30, 2008, 10:17 PM
lefteyeiu2002 said:
If I need a new AT&T phone, I just go to Best Buy and get a prepaid phone. They work great and you don't break the bank. :-)

Oh god, and the sad thing is you're not even new. That's prepaid fraud and when they find that phone on a postpaid accounts it will be suspended.
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Iselltheshitoutofphones

Jan 31, 2008, 1:24 AM
Ahhh...welcome back sir!

Glad to see your posts are refreshing.

Still honary as a mofo. Give me a call ya bitch ass.

Will
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stargrl78

Jan 30, 2008, 11:17 PM
I'm probably in the minority here, but insurance on a phone bugs me. For example if I buy a phone for $100 after rebates, then have it for 14 months, and drop it. I have paid $70 for insurance, then another $50 for the deductible. What will I get when they send me a new phone? A refurb! That is crazy to me. Thats happened to my hubby twice. Had insurance, messed up the phone, and they want to send a refurb. The phone was new when he got it, why send a used one when it breaks? Just seems like a waste to me.
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bwag717

Jan 30, 2008, 11:34 PM
I agree with you on the refurbished phone thing. The dealer I work for has their own extended warranty and we offer a NEW phone for the same price and we do same day claims (except on Sunday and if we don't have a comparable model in stock). By the way the phone you and your husband bought was really $300 or more, you just got a deal for a new 2 year commitment. $120 bucks is much better then paying $200-$400 for a phone.

Remember: With insurance you never need it when you've got it, but you wish you had it when you need it.
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stargrl78

Jan 31, 2008, 12:03 AM
Thats the truth, when you need it you don't have it Smile . As far as I know, and I could be wrong, the insurance AT&T has, pretty much gives a refurb if the phone needs to be replaced. At least in my experience thats how its been. And I would rather pay for a new phone than get a refurb. But most people probably don't care, they would take any phone, refurb or not.
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Rodimus Primal

Feb 1, 2008, 12:39 AM
Hey bwag, do you happen to work for Atlantic Wireless? I've been working for them now for a year and a half.

We have Cellguard which is so much better and easier then Asurion's coverage of AT&T phones.

People do need to realize that phones are expensive and that part of your monthly bill PAYS off your phone. Anytime after its paid off you're just making the carrier(any carrier) more money.
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AvgJoe

Jan 31, 2008, 1:07 AM
stargrl78 said:
I'm probably in the minority here, but insurance on a phone bugs me. For example if I buy a phone for $100 after rebates, then have it for 14 months, and drop it. I have paid $70 for insurance, then another $50 for the deductible. What will I get when they send me a new phone? A refurb! That is crazy to me. Thats happened to my hubby twice. Had insurance, messed up the phone, and they want to send a refurb. The phone was new when he got it, why send a used one when it breaks? Just seems like a waste to me.


You don't believe they sell that "insurance" as a favor do you? Its a huge profit and Im guessing a spiff or attaboy for the sales rep. EWS are a huge source of profit. Circuit City's ENT...
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attworld804

Jan 31, 2008, 2:00 PM
Actually, we as reps do not get any type of commission on selling insurance to customers. We offer it for piece of mind for you the consumer. And i agree, with the whole refurb phone thing, it suxs, but it does beat having to pay $300 for a phone vs $50.
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icanexplain

Jan 31, 2008, 8:50 PM
better than paying $210 for a refurb for your phone being out of warranty.
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Rodimus Primal

Feb 1, 2008, 12:58 AM
The thing many don't realize is that taking the insurance is designed so that it hurts a lot less when your phone DOES break. People are rough with their phones. When working at a theme park I found NUMEROUS cell phones on the grass in the track area of the roller coaster I ran. I've seen people bring their phones into my store in multiple fragmented pieces. I've kept some of them and placed them on the desk so people can see what is a possibility. By law we MUST take out car insurance and for good reason. Paying a $500 deductible(Mines $200 right now with Allstate!) is MUCH better then paying $5000 on car repairs. Same with insurance for phones. A phone cost $300 and paying $50 to replace your broken one is much better too.

I REALLY hat...
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golem22

Feb 1, 2008, 1:41 PM
An interesting thing, i firmly believe as wireless carriers adopt pro rated early termination fees the cost of phones will begin to increase and these 2 yrs for a phone deals will start to dry up. It is no big secret that those early termination fees is the carriers way of insuring themselves.

The way i always tell a customer no when they ask for the dreaded free phone is to compare cellular service to internet service, if your computer broke would your internet provider give you a new one?
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AvgJoe

Feb 1, 2008, 4:48 PM
golem22 said:
An interesting thing, i firmly believe as wireless carriers adopt pro rated early termination fees the cost of phones will begin to increase and these 2 yrs for a phone deals will start to dry up. It is no big secret that those early termination fees is the carriers way of insuring themselves.

The way i always tell a customer no when they ask for the dreaded free phone is to compare cellular service to internet service, if your computer broke would your internet provider give you a new one?


To which I would reply, "No internet service company EVER offered a free computer to sign up"

"NO cable company ever offered a free TV to sign up"

However It is common business practice for Wirele...
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pepsijunky

Feb 1, 2008, 1:03 PM
what is a detectable? Is that the same as GPS? Can I get a free phone please? Smile
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bwag717

Feb 1, 2008, 2:39 PM
HAHA Laughing That's the best. Sorry no free phones here.
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chainmail311

Feb 1, 2008, 5:00 PM
If you're dumb enough to buy a phone for full retail, you deserve to have to pay for it. Maybe you'll take better care of it.

Buy a phone on ebay for pete's sake. Just make sure it's a reputable seller, and you'll be fine.

1: Make sure they're a "power seller". Power sellers do over $1,000 bucks a month.

2: Make sure they're positive rating is 98% or higher.

Follow these two things, and buying phones on ebay will save you hundreds.
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AvgJoe

Feb 1, 2008, 5:29 PM
chainmail311 said:
If you're dumb enough to buy a phone for full retail, you deserve to have to pay for it. Maybe you'll take better care of it.

Buy a phone on ebay for pete's sake. Just make sure it's a reputable seller, and you'll be fine.

1: Make sure they're a "power seller". Power sellers do over $1,000 bucks a month.

2: Make sure they're positive rating is 98% or higher.

Follow these two things, and buying phones on ebay will save you hundreds.


Good advice. I bought some phones on Ebay, but always used ones. Bought my N82 with the $99 Garmin software package for $480 shipped, Bought the wife's 6126 for $86 Shipped.
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chainmail311

Feb 1, 2008, 5:37 PM
I lub ebay.

I got a Katana II for $184. (Back when they were only out for a month.) I got a Upstage for 260, but returned it cause it was a piece of crap. Also bought a stolen blackberry. When the seller found out it was stolen, he was pissed. He refunded me the $80 I spent on that. I might switch to a Treo or Blackberry on Sprint soon.
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phonerep01

Feb 1, 2008, 7:03 PM
Avgjoe -
I couldn't aggree with you more on the free phone/contract business. Thats dead on. Insurance is a nice option to have but I don't think its the ultimate solution to this omnipresent customer service issue.
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