The size of the phones has decreased and the size of my bill has increased in proportion.
I don’t even use my cell phone all that much, so why is my bill almost $75 a month? How did that happen? I thought I was signing up for a $29.95 a month plan. Oh yeah, there’s the system access fee, 911 fee and taxes. Don’t forget the text message fees. Who is sending me those text messages anyway?
A few months ago, I spend almost two hours on the phone with Customer Service (?) with my service provider to get to the bottom of who was sending me text message spam. Guess who it was? You get the prize! It was my service provider!
Okay .. that mystery was solved. Now to stop them. Not so easy .. I had to raise my voice and refuse to hang up until someone promised to make the text messages stop. One more phone call and they stopped. Am I the only one that they did this to, or do you just ignore it?
Mistake #1 .. I wanted a Blackberry … Dumb, dumb and dumber! I’m often away from my home office and being able to access my e-mail 7×24 made sense at the time. I’m a geek and geeks like toys. My service provider wanted me to pay full retail for a Blackberry because I still had 15 months left on my contract. Okay, I’m not that dumb.
I went onto Craig’s List and found a Blackberry 8703e for a reasonable price. Met the fellow at the cell phone store to ensure I was able to activate it. Only an extra $15 per month for unlimited e-mail. Nirvana!
Well .. not so fast .. first off .. it’s a terrible phone .. Well, they don’t actually say phone do they? Just Blackberry wireless handheld .. It’s damn inconvenient to key on that teeny tiny keyboard with my chubby thumbs. Why didn’t I notice that BEFORE I bought it? The one more or less full sized e-mail message I sent was full of typos which I didn’t notice on the tiny screen.
I’ve owned the thing for 4 months and still haven’t figured out most of what it does. Yes, I know I have to take responsibility for that .. BUT .. it’s a phone .. when did it become okay to have to spend 4 or 5 hours learning to use your phone? Shouldn’t it be more or less intuitive?
The software that came with it was out-of-date (not so unusual), so I downloaded a newer version. Had to go to my service provider’s site and sign up for yet-another account. Took almost 25 minutes to download on fast broadband. HUH? .. I thought there must be something wrong .. apparently not .. Installation took another almost 15 minutes on an almost-new laptop. HUH?
Didn’t sync automagically, so I spend 20 minutes on the phone waiting for a support person to tell me to delete a folder. How much trouble is it to add that to the FAQ? Okay, it’s syncs now, sometimes. All this so I can replace my paper calendar and have all my contacts telephone numbers (and e-mail addresses).
I do have my Google calendars syncing to my Outlook calendars, so I do have a very detailed calendar on the Blackberry. Overkill maybe?
This is a lot of overhead for very little convenience. Did I expect too much? Am I cheap? (well, yes) Do I really need to be that connected?
Blackberry will be going up on Craig’s list soon. Saga continues, stay tuned.
Do you have a “smart” phone? Is it worth signing your life away for 3 years and paying the monthly plan fees?