Thursday, February 28, 2008

I don't usually title my blogs, but if I did, the title for today would be "Why AT&T sucks."

As you know, I was recently in Canada for a few days. As you also probably know, I have nearly had my iPhone surgically attached and am basically addicted to checking my e-mail. The friend I stayed with up there had a Mac WiFi system in his house. Inexplicably, I was unable to connect to it with either my laptop or my iPhone. My friend had a laptop there that I was more than welcome to use. But, because I am incredibly impatient and (again) addicted to the internet, I often found myself checking e-mails while sitting in another room in the house, or more unnecessarily while sitting on the ski slope, with Data Roaming clicked on.

Let me first explain that when I was in Australia and New Zealand for an entire month, I still had service with T-Mobile. I hardly used my phone there, and certainly not to download e-mails - but international text messaging was free, and when I returned home, for the phone calls I did need to make, my entire bill was only about $65 over what is usually was.

I got my first text message from AT&T on the day I left Canada. It informed me there was a high amount of international data usage on my device and to call them to avoid unnecessary charges. I figured it couldn't be that bad, based on previous traveling experience. Maybe $30 extra or something. I was only in Canada, barely 30 minutes north of the border. And who really considers Canada "international"? You don't have to dial an international number to reach someone there. Canada is akin to a 51st state, America-lite, if you will. I should point out here that I freely admit I am a complete idiot.

I got a few more of those text messages from AT&T but ignored them. Then, I got another one this morning, a week after I'd returned. Hmm...I had been exchanging a reasonable amount of text messages with my friend in Canada. Maybe international texting wasn't free with AT&T? I mentally counted up the amount of texts we'd exchanged and came to....a whole freaking lot. I figured it was time to make the call to AT&T.

When I got ahold of the operator, she said she indeed saw a significant amount of data usage while I was in Canada amounting to 23mb. (Ooh...a whole 23mb!) I asked how much that was going to cost me and she checked my account then announced, "$472." I almost fell off my chair. My answer was a protracted, "Whaaaaat??" where the pitch rose to barely controlled hysteria at the end. Thankfully, she was able to add on an international data package for $40 that she could make retroactive to cover the cost, and that I can remove next week once the billing cycle ends. I asked if text messages were included with that. As it turns out, not so much. All those messages would be charged at $.50 per message, which multiplied by a whole freaking lot turned into a nice chunk of change. I added another package to cover the text messages that wasn't too expensive, so now I'm covered there.

Aargh...I never wanted to switch to AT&T anyway. I was forced to because of Apple and their sweet, slick, sexy, beautiful iPhone. And that, kids, is why AT&T sucks.


Blogger Auburn Kat said...

Thankfully she did make you pay for the entire thing!

1:59 PM  
Blogger Kings Fan said...

I think the real message here is... Canada sucks! Let's not get lost in that message.

3:02 PM  
Blogger Diane said...

Yowza! At least they worked it out with you. Blame your buddies at Apple for making a deal with the devil!

7:12 AM  
Blogger LA said...


That's it, just Damn!

10:47 AM  

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