June 27, 2012

Verizon ShareEverything is really ShareNothing (with customers)

I just found out this morning that Verizon is changing its data plans to something called ShareEverything.  It's kind of ironic they decided to call it that, since they decided to ShareNothing with their customers.

After I heard the news, I went to Twitter to read a bit more about it and there was a lot of huff and puff about "today being the last day to be grandfathered in" to keep your current standings. As I'm at work, I decided to Live Chat with a customer service representative to find out more about what's going on - and what the best solution is for my family. Please keep in mind that a customer service representative should know everything that's going on with her company, while the customer (me) has absolutely NO idea of the changes being brought forth.

Here's my conversation with Brooklyn. The whole time, she answered me in delays. I was very tempted to write, "Um, hello -- Where Brooklyn at?!?!"  The last three lines are my favorite.  Enjoy.

For the record, I still have no idea what is happening with the changes.  Let me know if you get it.

Please wait for a site operator to respond.
You are now chatting with 'Brooklyn'
Brooklyn: Thank you for visiting our website.  My name is Brooklyn , how may I assist you today?
you: I love your name
you: Okay - few things: 1. I cannot get into my account and 2. I heard that you are changing your fee structure for data plans and I'd like to receive some clarification on that.
Brooklyn: I will be more than happy to help you sign into your online account today, and go over the plan changes. May I have your full name and mobile number please?
Brooklyn: Thank you, please allow me a moment to access your account.
Brooklyn: Can you please verify your billing password? The billing password is something you would have set up when you called into customer care or when you first bought your phone at the store. Also the Billing Password is used to verify the account every time you contact a Verizon Wireless representative and is not the same as your My Verizon Password. It contains up to 5 characters either numbers, letters, or a combination of both.
you: If I remembered that, I wouldn't be in this pickle
Brooklyn:  Can I get you to verify your full billing address including the zip code and the last 4 of the social on the account.
you: ......
you: mine or my hubbys
Brooklyn: Thank you so much for verifying that information. One moment while I review your online account.
you: Thanks!
Brooklyn: What I can do is unlock the online account and have a temporary password sent via FREE text message to the device for you to sign in with. How does that sound?
you: That's fine. I was just trying to figure out what to do with my account given the new billing to data plans - so I'd really like to work that out as well together.
Brooklyn: Great, one moment while I send the password out for you.
you: Okay, I'm in my page
Brooklyn: You should now be able to view information like your Current Balance and a picture of your phone. Do you see this information now?
you: OKay
you: Can you please talk me through the changes while looking at my usage and help me figure out the best option for my family
Brooklyn: Great, whet I can do is send you the link for the new Shareeverything plan. How does that sound?
you: As it is right now, I feel I am paying an entirely insane amount on m bill each month.
you: Brooklyn? Are you there?
Brooklyn: Yes
you: Are we on the same page here? I'd like for you to help me figure out what's what with this new ShareEverything plan - which, by the way, I received no notice about.
you: So yes, please send me the link - an then will you be able to help me work through it?
Brooklyn: Sure, one moment while I send it out.
you: Thanks!
Brooklyn: CLICK HERE
you: OKay
you: now
you: $40 per phone
you: is already $80, correct
you: Given our data usage (per my account information) do you think i'm good with a 1GB data plan
Brooklyn: Based on your usage I would recommend the 2GB plan.
you: What's the "automatic" one you're changing everyone to tomorrow
you: So 80 plus the 60 is 140 - plus tax. Right now I'm at 150 plus tax -- so will I be saving about $10 per month?
Brooklyn: We are not automatically changing the plans. Verizon Wireless data devices average between 1 and 2 GBs of data a month.
you: No I mean - If I didn't contact you right now - what would happen to my account tomorrow?
you: I didn't even receive any information about this, my friend told me. So I'm just asking - how do I change it now to your suggestion ... and if I hadn't talked to you, what would my account automatically have been changed to
Brooklyn: Your current monthly access charge is 179.96, before taxes and any additional fees.
Brooklyn: With your two IPhone have unlimited talk and text and share 4GB of data, it will be around $150.
you: You told me to do 2GB?
you: My bill is $172.80
you: I don't know where your number is coming from
Brooklyn: Yes, but when you do it here on the Share Everything calculator it puts it at 4GB. That is just because you have the two Smartphones. On tomorrow it will have all of plan options on the site. You have an employee discount that takes 21% of the price.
Brooklyn: With the discount your monthly access charge is 151.96 before taxes or any other chareges.
Brooklyn: charges*
you: I see. Okay. I did the calculator as well and got 4GB - so you no longer recommend the 2GB?
Brooklyn: You can still get, but as of now we don't have the price for it on the Share Everything calculator. It will be available on tomorrow.
you: My question is this - there are a lot of people saying "today is the last day to do XYZ to keep the grandfathered rate of what you have now" -- I don't understand what that means. What is my last day to do today?!
Brooklyn: Today is the last day to upgrade and keep the unlimited data. You are not eligible to upgrade until 10/13/2012. Starting tomorrow if you want to add a line you will have to select from one of the new Share Everything plans.
you: So regardless, I cannot do anything today because I'm not eligible to upgrade. That said, tomrorow I have to call back or contact you or log in and make whatever changes I'd like to my account - yes?
you: But we have no idea what those are going to cost - because the rate sheet you sent me is not applicable, as I'm not eligible for an upgrade - is this correct?
Brooklyn: The upgrade, and changing of your plan is different.
Brooklyn: If you want to stay on the plan that you are on now, and wait until your upgrade date to change everything you can. You do not have to change to the new plans.
you: Oh I see. So basically, once the prices are out tomorrow - I will have a better idea of what to do - is this correct?
you: But for today, I cannot do one thing.
Brooklyn: If you want to do the 2GB shared it will be around $140.
Brooklyn: You do not have to make any changes today.
you: I know I don't have to - but if I can, I might want to. You're telling me that I cannot because I'm not eligble. I'm sorry, Brooklyn, but you're confusing me.
Brooklyn: I stated you are not eligible to upgrade. The new plans do not come out until tomorrow. What changes are you trying to make today?
you: I read on social media "Today is the last day to make changes to your account to keep your status and be grandfathered in at the rates you have now." I'm asking if I need to/If I can do anything to my account today to keep a low cost.
you: But perhaps the changes are in my benefit financially. So I'm asking your expertise, as you work with and for Verizon.
Brooklyn: That is what we have discussed above. If you want to change to the one of the new plans you will have to wait until tomorrow. There is nothing you have to do today to stay with what your current plan is.  
Brooklyn: What you read is for customers that are eligible to upgrade and have unlimited data and want to keep it. They will need to upgrade today.
you: I understand. Thank you for that clarification. Okay, well I'm a member of the media, so I will be sure to let people know. Is there a reason that Verizon didn't inform its customers of this change?
Brooklyn: I spoke with my Supervisor, and there was a notification on the bill about the new changes. It was also on the Website and some Commercials. I do apologize if some of our Customers was not aware of these changes.
you: I don't look at my bill because Verizon suggested I do auto pay, I don't visit your website because it's not a national news source and I use DVR so I can fast forward through commericals. This was really insensitive for Verizon to do. I wouldn't be surprised if people switched to ATT or other carriers in spite of your sneakiness. I appreciate your help Brooklyn.
Brooklyn: It was my pleasure to assist you with signing into your online account today and go over the information for the new plans, you were amazing. Thank you for chatting with Verizon Wireless. I look forward to chatting with you again. Please click close when ending this chat. Thank you, Have an outstanding day!!!