Sprint, Stumbling Backward

26 April 2011

Until recently, when the subject of cellular phone service arose, my report was always that, while I'd read and heard complaints about Sprint, I'd always been satisfied with their performance. That's no longer the case.

Last year, I added a number with a wireless modem and data plan to my account. That seemed to work pretty well until a couple of billing cycles ago, when I got hit with a huge bill. Since I'd not been monitoring my use, I assumed that I'd somehow gone way over my allotment, and paid the bill. Thereäfter, I started watching my use carefully. During the present cycle, Sprint claimed that, less than half-way through the cycle, I'd already used about 9/10 of my 5 GB allotment. I dropped-back to doing nothing with that connection but text email, and an aggregate of less than a few minutes on the WWWeb. But, a couple of days later in the early morning of 23 April, when I checked my ostensible use, by way of a café WiFi LAN, I found that Sprint was claiming that I'd gone well past the remainder of the allotment. I snapped-off an angry message to them.

Then, as I continued to watch, from the café WiFi LAN, with my modem powered-off and back at home, I watched the reported use climb by about an additional 100 MB! I snapped-off another angry message, and added that it was now plain that the whalloping overage charges of a few cycles ago should be refunded.

I also posted to a Sprint forum, and within a few days learned that essentially the same problem is being reported by other users. Sprint is claiming that powered-off and detached devices are gobbling-down capacity!

On the morning of 23 April, Sprint sent me e.mail

To ensure your needs are addressed, I have forwarded your request to our Account Services department. One of our specialists will contact you within 24-48 hours.
but the promised contact has not been attempted. My own plan had been to wait until to-day or to-morrow before using other channels or beginning the process of using other institutions.

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