Arobas Home

I’ve been a supportive guy. I pushed the agenda when my wife worked at Starbucks, promoting the hell out of drinks my wife helped launch and the plight of Starbucks global reputation. When she worked for an apparel company, I wore their hideous sample clothes. Today, we still buy our plants at the local plant nursery she worked when we met 10 years ago. As most of you know, my wife changed jobs a few months ago to work for a cell phone company. I would love to promote her new company as well, but I have to say my first interactions with said company have been less than stellar.

Personally I don’t have a T-Mobile cell phone yet because I don’t want Sprint to ram those ruthless early termination fees down my throat. My wife has moved to a BlackBerry Curve and seems happy. I’ve got a free BlackBerry Pearl waiting for me when (and if) I switch over next month.

This might make you wonder, “Great Egan, but tell me about those days you scooped ice cream for a living“… or maybe not. Anyways, we switched over to the revolutionary T-Mobile @ Home service. Perhaps you’ve seen some of their clever tv ads promoting the @Home service. For $10/month you get unlimited calling from your landline. Now that’s the tricky part, getting the damn landline activated.

I’m not an idiot when it comes to tech stuff, but the landline configuration is a bitch. Not getting a dial tone when I initially installed it, I grab a cell phone and dialed customer support. T-Mobile’s customer support tells you how long the wait will take. A fembot voice says “Your wait time is three hours 13 minutes”. I’m not sure how you feel about this, but I’m not going to wait on hold for three lovely hours. T-Mobile recognizes this and offers a callback service. I attempted to enter my cell phone number and my preferred callback time. It didn’t take the first two times and the call disconnected. I had to do it again. Did I get a callback at my requested time? Nope.

One week after receiving our @Home router we finally had a dial tone. That lasted for two days. At some point on Monday the dial tone was gone. I was able to reset the router and get the dial tone back. Upon arrival Tuesday the dial tone was mysteriously absent again, sort of like T-Mobile phone support. I spent about two hours fiddling with the router to no avail.

At home I don’t have the internet and I don’t have a landline. Needless to say, at home and abroad I’m not so keen on this T-Mobile @Home stuff. I’ll give it another chance… once I get the landline back. If I have to reset the router every time someone farts in our basement, I’m done.

**in the interest of full disclosure. On Saturday morning I was able to get connected after waiting on hold for 35 minutes. Once I got a person on the phone, she was more than willing to wait out the connection process. She even called me back on my own Sprint cell phone when my wife’s T-Mobile cell phone lost service in the basement. It’s like a black fly in my chardonnay


About lessinges

Seattle native, discovering life! I like ice cream, cold cereal, and The Amazing Race.
This entry was posted in Web/Tech. Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to Arobas Home

  1. brandy says:

    Ugh. That kind of stuff drives me insane. If you want to start a Canadian riot, talk to anyone north of your border about the Telus phone/internet company. I’m fairly certain Mother Teresa would have lost her shit if she had to deal with them.
    I don’t have any wise words about your situation, but I DO hope it improves. Because Anna deserves a home with an awesome internet connection.

  2. egan says:

    Brandy – damn right she deserves a home with a kick ass internet connection. If her dad doesn’t have an internet connection by midnight tonight, he might turn into a Mogwai.

  3. meno says:

    Yes, i realize that i was shouting.
    That’s f’ing ridiculous. Hire more reps dudes.

  4. egan says:

    Meno – I kid you not. With the exception of the one time I got through, every time I called the wait time was in excess of three hours. Now if it’s that long… don’t advertise it. Tell me everyone’s busy and encourage people to use their callback system. Then call the customer back right at that time.

  5. brookem says:

    oh my, you can imagine how much this would bug me out. i couldnt deal with it. id just up and say screw it and not have a phone or internet. its too much for me.
    i hope it gets fixed, and stat. you must be flipping out sans internet at home, huh?

  6. mini!midi!maxi! says:

    Wishing you the best of luck…my personal experience with Tmobile has not been good! Nevertheless I am still with them holding out for my phone upgrade. pathetic I know:) Plus I roped all of my family and friends on as well…

  7. Darlene says:

    Or a death row pardon two minutes too late?
    I work for a cell phone company as well, and believe me, I’m not the hugest supporter of their service either. I do, however have the Curve as well & I love it. I go to the competition for my @home stuff.

  8. Maggie says:

    i don’t trust a single phone or cable service. that’s why now that we have one that we can tolerate and get it to work most of the time, we stick with it. how’s that for old codger unwilling to change?

  9. Gwen says:

    Three HOURS? Now that is some crazy shit. You are more patient than I would be, for sure.

  10. tori says:

    I have a t-mobile phone and we are getting one for my daughter for her birthday in January. I’m happy to be supporting your wife’s company.
    Just FYI, I had an issue with my cell phone (because I am a moron!) and the lady helped me right away and even joked around with me. So maybe you just got a bad time to call? Or maybe it just has to do with the at home service, which we don’t have but were considering.

  11. Amanda says:

    I hate it when things like that happen. You sound like a pretty patient person to put up with all that so many times. The last time I had something similar (this was in Malaysia), I ended up looking up the phone number of the service provider company’s MD and then ringing that office. Surprising, the secretary there was very helpful and arranged everything for me then called back to see if things were working. It really surprised me.

  12. kirk says:

    The AHT (average handle time) you get quoted could change just by one person coming back from lunch from 3:35 to more like 5 minutes. You’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t if you don’t give realistic hold times. I can’t remember who it was but I called some place and their message was pretty much “we’re busy, call us back later” and then hung up. Maybe it was Dell. Maybe it was when I was working there.
    When I was a t-mo customer I was pleased with the 611 support and never had to wait long on hold. Then again I rarely had to call them. Which is how it should be.
    Since switching to ATT for the iPhone I’ve had to call ATT exactly once and that was due to getting an obscene international roaming bill two months in a row (a total of $600 for just a week goofing off on the iphone while waiting at airports or for friends to show up). ATT did credit my account $275 though which didn’t suck. I did use the intl roaming a lot and I did know ATT charges an arm and a leg.
    I don’t see the point of the at home service. Why not just use the cellphone? Especially with the crystal clear 3G that ATT has and T-mobile has rolled out in Austin.
    I could see you and the wife keeping an old fashioned wireline account from the phone company to have as a backup if your cellphones don’t work and there’s a problem with the baby, but other than that, landline phone? What’s that? I kept my landline phone for a year just for that “just in case” thing and had all of my calls forwarded to my cellphone. When I got the iPhone 3G and the data fee was higher I cut the wireline and haven’t missed it. Since ATT was the landline company I moved it just from one of their stuffed pockets to another.

  13. Cléa says:

    I wish I didn’t need a landline for my internet connection. I’d get rid of it pronto.
    And you’re a good supporter of Mme’s work.

  14. justrun says:

    3 hours? Yes, that’s awful.
    We have a service here for the cheap landline deal, too. Same issues, which is why I continue to pay too much for the monopoly we call a phone company.

  15. Matt says:

    You know, that’s great Egan…but tell me about those days you scooped ice cream for a living…
    Maybe next post?

  16. alexa says:

    i like ice cream but i hate cellphone issues. oy.
    and thanks for stopping by my blog today : )

  17. Beck says:

    Bonjour mon ami! Comment ca va? So I decided to take a trip down bloggers lane and started to read your posts. Somehow I ended up on Mrs. Lessinges post about her upcoming walk — incredibly admirable — and then onto The Nipples are in the Microwave. And there in the cute little pic of the honey and the babe (who I might add is ridiculously adorable and cunningly resembles you) are the three little jars I sent you. How cool!
    I think of you all often and from the likes of your recent posts you are doing just fine. I can’t believe it’s been one year! Please give Anna some smootches from me.

  18. Golden or NTKTOK says:

    I used to work for T-mobile.. before my days at this place. So.. it’s been a while. I was there in the Voicestream / Jamie Lee Curtis days.. yes.. I met her. She’s much shorter than I imagined. Anyway, I digress. My tmo phone works sometimes in my house. I have to stand on my head and open the fridge door and make sure the TV is off. I dislike TMO a lot. I have at least 5 dropped calls a day. That doesn’t include the calls that I had to call back that dropped (if that makes any sense). Regardless, I had fun working for that company when it was up and coming. All wireless companies have their issues. Sprint’s customer service was beyond awful. AT & T.. don’t even get me started.

  19. Lynn says:

    I’m with Chris…Verizon. One problem with a phone not working properly whenever I went more than 50 miles from my house. Spent 1 hour on my DH’s cell phone (at least I wasn’t the one on hold) with a representative of said company, and they managed to reprogram my phone while en route. Problem solved. T-mobile is good if you need a SIM card…other than that…evidently they are not so good.

  20. mone says:

    Oh Egan, I feel so sorry for you. You should have asked me before going to T-mobile 🙂
    They are originated in Germany and have still an absolut monopoly here. Its not the choice of the people, because the service etc from T- mobile is just shitty and it is way too expansive, at least over here. Unfortunately there are some state laws that make it real difficult for other phone providers to get their feet in the market.

  21. tori says:

    I just read back the comment I left last night and it totally sounds like I am discounting the negative experience you had. I wasn’t meaning to, just saying that I had a good experience so maybe it isn’t always as bad as it seemed to you. That will teach me to comment while checking homework!

  22. tori says:

    And also, my son and I went to get ice cream yesterday. Just thought you might want to know since you used to scoop ice cream.

  23. ms chica says:

    I had to move 350 miles to the top of a small mountain to get cell service, so I’m probably not much help on this….
    Good luck!

  24. Nilsa says:

    So, I have two comments for you related to your frustration.
    First, it might not be all T-Mobile’s fault. You see, your original monopoly phone company still owns the lines to your home and I’m pretty sure they have something to do with getting that dial tone. So, you can spread the blame if you wish.
    And second, I feel your pain. Last month, I had quite the time with the company I now refer to as AT&MotherFuckingT. Customer service and accountability does not exist at these companies. It’s pathetic.

  25. churlita says:

    3 hours is just insane. I have Verizon, and one thing I will say about them, is that their customer support is amazing.

  26. BigBro says:

    wouldn’t the true irony be stellar Verizon service?

  27. egan says:

    Chris – yes, it’s the network. I’m sick of that dorky guy as their spokesperson though. I miss Darth Vader.
    Brookem – damn right you’d not tolerate it. For me I see this sort of thing as a learning experience. It may test my patience, but I learn heaps.
    minimidimaxi – you know, I may have spoken too soon. As I’m diving into this it could be an issue with my landline provider, Qwest.
    Darlene – I’m glad you like the Curve. My wife has been thrilled with hers. Nice Alanis lyric there, well played.
    Maggie – I’d never think of you as a codger. You live in Quebec and grew up in my area. Codgers don’t do those sorts of things.
    Gwen – when the dust has settled and we have our landline and internet working, I stil don’t like that T-Mobile’s hold times are in excess of three hours routinely. I called my high speed provider and get through immediately every time.
    Tori – you’re right, it could just be bad timing. Nothing sucks more than trying to troubleshoot a basement computer while on a cell phone. Well, there are plenty of things that suck more. I’m feeling dramatic. T-Mobile is good, I still need to give them a fair shake and this issue may not have anything to do with them.
    Amanda – now that’s pretty cool. Getting the secretary to help resolve your issue is progress. I like that.
    Kirk – that’s precisely why I want a landline. I want a line I can use from anywhere in the house and if a babysitter is present. It’s possible I jumped the gun on who is at fault with this. I’m still not thrilled about being quoted three hours. I’ve worked in two call centers and a wait time over five minutes was dreadful.
    Cléa – I know, not having a landline would be nice. However almost all connections require a high speed service of some sort to the house.
    Justrun – I would argue there’s much less of a monopoly these days. But let’s table a discussion like that for another day. Three hours should never be quoted as a wait time, that’s my belief.
    Matt – when I scooped ice cream I like to refer to myself as a soda jerk. I was a bit awkward in my skin, but loved my first official job. I worked alongside an elderly couple that owned our neighborhood Baskin Robbins. Good memories.
    Alexa – you’re welcome. Thanks for the return visit. What’s your favorite flavor of ice cream? My current favorite is this french lavender flavor a local company makes. It’s mighty tasty.

  28. kirk says:

    T-mobile at home is not a landline. It is VOIP. The power goes out or your interweb connection goes down and no phone. Keep the $10 qwest dial tone for what they call “lifeline” service. You only get like 20 calls a month for $10 then they’ll charge a quarter for each one after that.

  29. egan says:

    Kirk – no shit about the landline. I know that, sometimes it just makes it easier to explain. I know we don’t actually have a landline. I keep saying that mainly so I don’t have to explain Voip over and over. $10 just for a dial tone. Now that’s funny stuff. For us just to have a phone the basic fee with taxes was around $30/month. Then you add in long distance and call features and you get close to $40/month. It’s a bit expensive. If it only cost $10-15/month we’d most likely keep the landline.

  30. egan says:

    Beck – well well well, look who chimed in. Nice to see you around these parts. I know there’s only one person who will call me Cervélo on this blog. How the heck are you? I’m so glad you could see the jars you sent Anna. We were so thankful for all those nice baby shower gifts. Yeah, the last year has flown by for the most part. Glad you’re back. Are you blogging again?
    Golden – the jury is still out on T-Mobile. I may have jumped the gun on who is at fault with all of this. Currently I’ve shifted my focus to Qwest since I can’t get any internet at home. We’ll see what happens. I have Sprint because the company I work for (ahem) gives us a decent rate. I’ve never had to hold more than 5 minutes to speak to a Sprint customer service rep. I think waiting 35 minutes last Saturday was very patient of me. Nobody should ever be expected to wait three hours. I’m just saying.
    Lynn – My first cell phone was with Verizon and I had no issues at all. I switched only because I got pretty good company rates with Sprint. Now that my wife works for T-Mobile, I can’t afford to pass up the savings. I did notice on a recent trip away from Seattle, my Sprint cell phone was the only one not getting a signal in rural Washington.
    Mone – Deutsche Telekom right? I know that’s their parent company. They’re a large company and have a huge presence in Europe for obvious reason. Sorry you don’t like them. The laws surrounding cell phone coverage is damn confusing.
    Tori – your comment was fine. I didn’t take it any other way. I like to hear stories about happy T-Mobile customers. No complaints here.
    Tori – ice cream is the nectar of the gods. I would be lost without it. I could live a happy life if I operated an ice cream store in a sleepy tourist town.
    Ms Chica – we all know that’s not the real reason you moved though. I’m in a good mood so I won’t make you fess up today.
    Nilsa – you’re right. Most likely this whole damn problem will be Qwest’s fault. My dsl modem is about five years old now. I think I’m due for an upgrade. One thing I’m learning is how much people really don’t like AT&T.
    Churlita – yeah, my first cell phone was with Verizon and I had zero complaints. Things got resolved in a timely manner and I can’t recall dropping many calls.
    BigBro – you lost me there. Why would that be true irony? Because Verizon is number three behind AT&T and Sprint?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s