Cingular Stinks

Cingular just sent me a “free” text message which caused my phone to beep loudly and interrupt my work. It says: “Get current CNN News, local weather, ESPN and more on your phone!” This is an advertisement. It’s unsolicited commercial SMS. It’s spam. I’m a paying Cingular subscriber. Don’t send me adverts without warning.

One Response to “Cingular Stinks”

  1. Devsky says:

    Here is a letter I just wrote to Cingular, telling them what to do with their service:

    Dear Cingular Wireless:

    I am calling to inform you that I am no longer satisfied with the service I receive from you. I have been through much turmoil with you company over the past week in my attempts to do something as simple as buying a new cellular phone. I currently have a prepaid plan with Cingular, but the phone I have now is old and not as reliable. Thus, I wanted to buy a new phone. However, I went to one of your locations (168 N. State; Chicago), and when I was about to buy the phone, the Sales Associate told me that if I buy the new phone I would lose the plan I have, Keep in Contact, which gives me nights and weekends for 10 cents a minute. First, I love this plan; I have had it for as long as I can remember. Two, I was never given notification that the plan was discontinued. As I am a paying customer, I believe I have a right to be warned if my current plan is being discontinued. After all, phones do not last forever, and I loathe surprises. As soon as I was told about what happened to my plan (and I already know about the Pay as You Go and Pick Your Plan plans, but my current grandfathered plan supersedes them both), I chose not to buy the phone, and I seriously considered switching over to another service. I wanted to email Cingular with my concern, but in order to send an email, I would have to sign in, but the email option was only for contract customers. I found an email address when searching through your website, which was [email protected]. Even though I told them that I was considering taking my business elsewhere, all they said was: Thank you for your recent message. Unfortunately, this web email address is only for assistance with Credit Card issues while ordering minutes online. For all other inquiries, please contact Cingular Customer Care by dialing 611 from your cell phone or dial 1-866-CINGULAR. We apologize for any inconvenience. They would not even forward my information to the appropriate authority.

    After giving it some thought, however, I decided, begrudgingly, to stay with Cingular, ordering the Pay-as-you-go 25 cent plan. I went back to the same store a week later (September 30) to buy the phone. However, there was a problem migrating my account to the new phone (Or, as they would say, from TMDA to GSM). I stood there for 30 minutes watching them play with the computer, until they admitted that there computer would not allow them to complete the transaction. They told me that I should order online or over the phone. So, I walked away empty-handed. I called your customer service number, and I spoke with your representative, ###### #####, at 5:50 PM. She told me that she would not be able to handle my request, and that I should go to a nearby store! At 6:07 PM, she left a message on my cell number’s voicemail that I should also go online and just order the phone. I can then be walked through the process of “changing equipment.” I did go online and I tried to only order the phone, but the system would not let me order without buying the plan as well.

    Even though I was steamed and beyond frustrated at this point, I decided to give Cingular one more chance. Thus, the next day I went to the location at 57 E. Chicago (in Chicago). They had the same problems that the other store had—migrating the account from TDMA to GSM. It took another 20 minutes of me standing around before the man who helped me declare that the system had a “glitch,” and that he could not complete the order.

    Well, I have had enough. It is horrifying that something as simple as buying a new phone from my own provider can be so difficult. I have been a customer with CellularOne and Cingular for more than 6 years, but I have never encountered such grotesque treatment. I was already betrayed by the fact that you took away my plan without informing me, but even when I was willing to more on with a new, albeit not as good plan, I keep getting the runaround and I waste more than an hour of my time for nothing.

    This is why I have decided not to renew my service with Cingular when it expires. Yes, I am going to cancel my service with Cingular for good. Instead, I plan to switch to T-Mobile, whose service is far more superior than yours. Not only do they have the same features (Call Waiting, Voicemail, etc), but they also make it easy for customers and non-customers to email them. They even offer more minutes per card than you do. For instance, a $25 card provides 100 minutes with Cingular; with T-Mobile, the same price is good for 130 minutes.

    In addition to this, I am going to tell all of my friends who still have KIC what I have gone through, and I will convince them to go with Cingular too.
    Considering the nightmare your company put me through, I sincerely hope you will someday learn to respect all of your customers, whether they are prepaid or contractual.

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