Virgin Mobile

10:29 AM

Generally speaking, I don't like the telephone. If I'm going to interact with someone, I prefer to do it face-to-face or in writing. I don't know why, but I've always been this way.

E-mail is a godsend. I can communicate quickly and effectively, and have a record of the conversation or information conveyed so if anyone needs to refer to what I said last week about printer cartridges at the library, it's right there. Perfect. Beautiful. Not so with phone conversations, which take place and are forgotten.

Anyway. Last week, I mentioned problems with my phone--a Kyocera Slider Sonic powered by my good friends at Virgin Mobile. Theoretically, this phone is great. Not only can I program The Beloved's number at work so that I can call and ask him to pick up orange juice on his way home, but I can also take pictures with this crazy thing. And listen to MP3s on it. This is way more than I need, but, hey, a girl has got to have her toys, right? And, while I wait for my paycheck to come in so that I can justify even looking at digital cameras, I figured I could experiment with the photo and video capabilities I paid for when I bought the toy. Er. Phone.

So I took pictures. Of the cats. Of The Beloved. Of my knitting projects. Of myself. And there they sit. On my phone. Because I can't upload the foolish pictures to Virgin Mobile's "My Pix" wonderland, or e-mail them to myself, or transfer them using a USB cable or the flash card. Now, I'm perfectly willing to admit that some things that are intuitive to everyone else in the free world seem to be to be written in Coptic or some other foreign and obscure language. So I gave the phone to The Beloved. He's a software engineer. He couldn't make the foolish thing work either. We decided there was one thing left to do before calling the help line--RTFM. So I did. It was painful. And not helpful at all.

Last week I think I glossed over my visit to Virgin Mobile's website and its not-entirely-helpful help page which resulted in my e-mailing customer service with a query (It's broken. Fix it. Please.) and their response (Bummer. Call us.). So this morning I had to pick up the phone--the land line, naturally, in case I had to try anything with the phone in question. My experience largely confirmed my avoidance of the infernal piece of communication equipment.

As with many customer service lines, this was fraught with menus. My menu guide was "Simone." She sounded young and hip, which fits VM's image wonderfully, but was not really what I wanted this morning before my second cup of coffee. What I wanted was someone knowledgeable who could maybe help me. After 4 minutes and 23 seconds on hold, I got Myron--who almost fit the bill.

Myron sounded like he was overwhelmed by screens--which may be endemic in his job as mobile phone troubleshooter, but almost sounded as though it was caused by a switchover to Windows Vista. Poor guy. The Beloved has dealt with that at home and it hasn't been any fun at all. But back to Myron. He walked me through all sorts of photo-sending troubleshooting tips--all of which I had already tried. He put me on hold (6 minutes and 17 seconds) while he asked his boss for what I can only assume was the "secret knowledge" not yet passed on in the help files. Myron's boss said it sounded like a software glitch and that since my phone is less than a year old and still under warranty, the best thing to do would be to exchange it for one that works. Well, OK. I'm not thrilled with that answer, but it works. The end result is that I will have a phone with all the capabilities for which I shelled out the big bucks back in July.

So they transferred me to Returns. But Returns was busy. So I hung out on hold with Simone for 10 minutes and 48 seconds. Not only was Simone not helpful--she was downright irritating. Every 45 seconds or so, she would interrupt the music (which really wasn't to my liking, but it was better than listening to her recorded voice) to let me know that someone was still on the other line, but that I should hold on 'cause someone would be here soon. I really wanted to hang up--I don't like waiting on hold. But, I wanted to follow Myron's instructions in order to cross this problem off of my to do list. He told me to wait and talk to someone in Returns and so that was what I was going to do.

Someone finally picked up. I don't think he gave me his name--or if he did, he mumbled it. I'm just going to call him Nimrod. Anyway. Nimrod asked for my name, phone number and secret key. He then decided to do his own round of troubleshooting. He was not impressed that I had done all of these things a) on my own and b) with Myron. In fact, the tone of his voice suggested that he thought I was not only a dumb girl, but an exceptionally dumb girl. Whatever. I ran through everything again. Still cannot upload pictures. It's like they're stuck in the Phantom Zone or something. Nimrod then asked me to reprogram my phone and then just leave it alone for four hours while it resets. He must have told me four times not to touch it while it's recalibrating. Just leave it alone. It's sitting on the corner of my desk. I hope looking at it occasionally is OK.

He grudgingly allowed that I could call back if it still didn't work (I didn't have the heart to tell him that resetting the phone was one of the first things I tried before calling Myron. Why burst his little bubble like that?). But that I should try the help page first. I hung up before Simone could come back to add any more enjoyment to my phone experience.

This made for a really long morning. And a rather unhappy customer (me)--particularly if in four hours I find that my phone still doesn't work and I've got to call them again in order to maybe have someone in the Returns department listen to me. I'm thinking, if wax tablets and styli worked for Julius Caesar, maybe they can work for me, too.

You Might Also Like

1 observations

Like us on Facebook

Flickr Images