In a previous post, I discussed the folly of my brand new, military specification compliant, Motorola i560.
I may have also ranted for a brief moment about the number of calls I drop with my Nextel service and stated that it was a contention for another article.
This is that article.
I returned from the gym today, pulled my cell phone out of a compartment of my duffle bag, and like clockwork, the phone was off. Stone dead, blank screen, off.
I turned the phone back on and was greeted by the “DO” slogan used by the walkie talkie cell phone company.
And then, poof. Off. Stone dead, blank screen, so badly wanting to throw it against a wall, off.
I decided to call Nextel Care and see if I could put a stop to this and get my defective phone replaced.
The automated female voice at the other end gave me several options, including Spanish, sales, customer service, and ah yes, technical support.
On hold for about five minutes, a female technical support agent finally answers and I calmly explain that I purchased an i560 from Nextel less than two months ago and that it shuts itself off by itself.
She apologized profusely and tried to explain to me that Motorola offers a warranty, but that would mean sending them my phone for repair and being without a phone for up to 4 days, an impossibility in my profession.
Again apologizing, she brings in another lady, this time an agent of “tele-sales.” She explains to me that while Nextel stands by their hardware, Motorola warranties the phones and I would probably have to go through them.
But she wasn’t 100 percent sure.
Did I mention the Nextel phone service and coverage in Boston, Connecticut, New York, Las Vegas, Denver, Orlando, Chicago and all of southern California (some of the places I’ve been since I switched to Nextel) is not very good?
Somehow, the sales representative knew this, and knew that I was having problems with my service. She offered to transfer me to a third person-a customer care representative-who could offer to credit my account for the dropped calls.
So I talk to Jack in customer care, and our conversation went something like this: “I understand your frustration sir, let me see…” BEEP!!! “TRY AGAIN”
My Nextel dropped a call, to Nextel.
So I close the phone and prepare to redial on speaker phone.
The phone turned itself off again.
Finally, I am able to call back after thoroughly screaming at the disconnected and turned off cellular phone. As soon as I get to the menu, BEEP.
Dropped call number two.
I call back and get a customer care representative who again explains the Motorola warranty-which I really didn’t want to hear about.
Her computer crashes.
“Oh my, my system is going to have to restart, let me put you on hold.”
Sprint has the most annoying hold music in history.
After eleven minutes, the line rings and a technical support representative asks if she can help me.
Well, I don’t know. Can you?
She never had a chance to respond. BEEP.
That’s number three.
My next call was almost to Verizon to have a landline installed in my home and inquire about wireless plans, but I stuck with it and finally got through to poor Tammy in customer care.
“You’re gonna need to forgive me Tammy, but I am extremely upset.”
This is vaguely what I remember:
“I have now called you people four times to complain about my defective phone, but I cannot do so because my Nextel phone has dropped the call three times. My phone randomly shuts off. It’s a brand new phone. I do not want the Motorola warranty because I can’t be without my phone for three days. You sold me a defective phone and I want it replaced.”
Granted, I am a little upset by this point.
This goes on for about twenty minutes, a new record for a phone call on either one of my previous Nextel phones. She gives me a $55 credit to cover, ironically, the cost of using an express service with the Motorola warranty.
Then, and I’m surprised she managed to stay chipper with me all this time, she offers to transfer me back to technical support so they can create something called a “network ticket.” This means that the Sprint/Nextel guys will come out, check the signal and reception in my area and if it is nearly as poor as I’ve been saying it is, offer to credit my account to make up for it.
Hold time: 20 minutes, that’s almost 40 minutes, and I’m not even mad that this is going on an hour. I was just happy that my phone could keep a call going that long!
“Thank you for calling Sprint, together with Nextel, this is Bra..” BEEP.
Just to add coarse salt to open wound, when I called back, the Nextel offices were closed for the night.
With what I’m hearing about Nextel, combined with what I am experiencing, there must be public relations people at Sprint/Nextel on 24-hour suicide watch
Nextel: DONE (making calls).