Everyone might be happy to hear that all the large cell phone companies are lower the prices of their unlimited voice plans to about $60 a month but that is not what you need to worry about. Although your voice plan might be going down, cell phone providers are secretly higher your data plans.
It began with Verizon Wireless. Last month, that company began requiring certain non-smartphone customers to subscribe to a data plan that costs at least $10 per month. Verizon’s move marks the first step in a larger trend to make up for carriers’ lost revenue from voice.
Accordingly to CNN, Smartphone owners are used to paying for an unlimited data plan with T-Mobile, Verizon and AT&T customers doling out the most: roughly $30 per month. Sprint offers a slightly different service, but also requires smartphone users to subscribe to an unlimited plan.
But non-smartphone customers aren’t used to high-priced data plans. Less expensive, limited data plans have been largely available but not widely adopted. Verizon said it began to require new customers who purchase so-called “3G multimedia” phones to subscribe to a data plan in part so that they could get the full functionality out of their phones.
Previously, Verizon offered non-smartphone customers two data plans: $10 for up to 25 megabytes or $20 for up to 75 megabytes. In January, Verizon eliminated the $20 plan and replaced it with a $30 unlimited plan that was previously available only to smartphone users.
3G multimedia phones include a wide array of phones, ranging from the LG enV Touch, which has a touch screen and a QWERTY keyboard, to the Motorola Entice, essentially a standard flip phone that can access the mobile Web.
Other carrier will follow suit. So watch your cell phone bills carefully because those data plan cost could bit you in the rear end.
AT&T announced that it will invest $19 billion to build out its mobile network in 2010 to keep up with growing demand for its Iphone and other 3g devices and phones.
Specifically, AT&T will add 2,000 new cell sites and upgrade existing cell sites with three times more fiber links than it had in 2009. This will increase capacity for the network that connects the cell towers to AT&T’s main network. The backbone portion of the network is a critical component to AT&T’s network; with these upgrades in place – it will help AT&T to easily upgrade in the future to 4G wireless technology.
Text messaging is allowing cell phone carriers to mark up their bills by 6,500%.
Consumer are gradually learning that sending these small and short messages are causing their cell phone bill to dramatically increased. Here is why?
On a typical pay per text plan, it usually cost you $0.20 to send outgoing and $0.10 to receiving a 160 character text.
Even if you sign up for a unlimited texting plan for $10 a month, they are still profiting because texting causes them next to nothing to maintain.
AT&T announced that it has release an new application called “Mark The Spot” which will let iPhone user submit complaints about dropped calls, poor service coverage, and less-than-perfect voice quality.
The application is free and available in iTunes. The “Mark the Spot” application can be downloaded onto all iPhones running version 3.0 or later of Apple’s operating system or it can be access using iTunes and synchronized to the iPhone via a PC or Mac.
AT&T said that they plan to use the data collected to identify trends and prioritize the company’s network investment.
iPhone owners have been complaining about AT&T’s network since the Apple iPhone went on sale in the summer of 2007. Complaints mounted after the 3G version of the phone was released a year later in 2008.
And as more iPhone users come onto the network, more people, particularly in densely populated urban areas, such as New York City and San Francisco, have experienced problems with dropped calls and congested data networks.
AT&T has been upgrading its network to keep up with demand. But problems persist. And AT&T’s network recently got a poor ranking in terms of customer satisfaction in a Consumer Reports survey.
Verizon Wireless was the big winner of the annual wireless consumer survey. The big loser was AT&T. AT&T got hammered in just about every category, from voice services to the frequency of dropped calls. That is not a good thing for exclusive iPhone carrier.
The survey covered 26 cities. The results are as follows:
AT&T’s worst marks in the Consumer Reports came in such categories as “service availability,” “circuit capacity,” “dropped-call frequency,” and “voice service.”
The Federal Communications Commission said that AT&T will pay $500,000 to settle charges that it erroneously billed customers and non-customers a $3.95 monthly recurring fee in 2004.
After agreeing to pay the fine, AT&T announced that it was taking steps to address the billing problems.
It is clear now more than ever that we have to review our telephone and call phone bills very careful. We have to scrutinize every detail and service that we are being charged for to make sure they are correct.
A California company filed a lawsuit charging that it and other telephone customer were unlawfully billed by AT&T through long-distance charges added to their local phone bills.
People who are not AT&T customer are discovering that they are being repeatedly assessed AT&T long-distance charges through their local phone by BellSouth, the company charged.
The problem was not confined to California. The Florida Attorney General issued a consumer advisory warning telephone customers that AT&T long distance charges were improperly being added to local phone bills.
According to one person, who tried to closed their account with AT&T, AT&T continued to billed on their closed account anyways. They tried to clear this up for 8 months but AT&T continued to billed them.
Part of the problem is with AT&T’s automated system that prevents callers from speaking with a live customer service representative and obstructing consumers from receiving refunds for the improper long distance charges.
The class action lawsuit was filed on August 15, 2003 and asserts claims against AT&T for unlawful, unfair or fraudulent business practices in violation of the California Unfair Competition Law, for unjust enrichment, and for money had and received.
According to the complaint, AT&T unlawfully bills some consumers who are not AT&T customers through their local phone bills, and AT&T’s computerized billing system continues to assess charges on phone lines not subscribed to AT&T long-distance service even though AT&T’s own records indicate that there is no AT&T call activity on the phone lines or that AT&T does not provide service to such lines.