Like everything else in life, mobile service providers have their good and bad points. In a perfect world, maybe we’d find one with the perfect plan and no down side. Since we aren’t aware of any cell towers in Paradise, we must content ourselves with the least objectionable, if not the best possible, alternative. And as our wireless world expands with each passing the day, our expectations grow accordingly. So what are the objections that consumers voice most often? Here we offer our list of the 10 most common complaints about mobile service providers:
- Voice Quality – Even more so than dropped calls, customers are miffed at the audio quality of their voice calls. Spotty signal strength and phone selection are most often the culprits, though it also is based on available bandwidth. Voice traffic may be given lower priority than data, causing the audio quality to be diminished.
- Billing Discrepancies – It takes up more pages than former Congressman Mark Foley, and your bill never even resembles the plan you chose. Surcharges, upgrade fees, and miscellaneous taxes add up to a major beef for consumers.
- Customer Service – Everything from interminable hold times to ACD menus from hell, customers are fed up. Making matters worse is the difficulty in getting a live human on the line, to whom you can at long last vent your frustrations.
- Dropped Calls – Though networks across the board offer significantly better coverage than just a few years ago, cellular usage is placing far more demand than ever on them. This, as smart phone capabilities ramp up the need for more spectrum.
- Slow Download Speeds – This is an issue that is rooted both in high traffic demands, and the discrepancy between advertised speeds and actual user experience. Speeds tend to be even slower in areas where the demand is greatest, ie San Francisco and New York City.
- Contract Terms – It’s bad enough that those great introductory offers promising cheap rates and a free phone require a 2-year commitment, what’s worse is that you get locked in before you know whether the service is going to be any good. Plus, if you change plans, your obligation is extended.
- Teaser Deals – Speaking of introductory offers, they some customers cold who run the aforementioned customer service gauntlet only to be advised that they don’t qualify. That deal is only for new customers; but we appreciate your business, valued customer.
- Weak Indoor Signal – It can be awfully frustrating to purchase a mobile plan, then discover that you can’t get a signal where you work, or at home. It can be even more costly for consumers who rely on a mobile device to replace their landlines.
- Bandwidth Caps – Let’s face it, we’re used to getting unlimited usage in our plans and were willing to pay for it. Yet unlimited stopped meaning unlimited once traffic demands went through the roof. Blame heavy users, streaming video services and applications, gamers, etc. Tiered service seem to be the wave of the future for mobile service plans.
- Roaming Charges – With network coverage improvements and more favorable agreements between networks in place, as well as the roll-out of 4G, roaming charges aren’t as high on the list as in years past. But we still hate to see them on our bills.
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Story by Coleen Torres