I’ve spoken with Cingular customer service five times in the past two days. Six if you count the time they called (independently) to do a survey on how happy I was with my new Cingular service.
On Monday, I received my first bill since switching my account and getting the new phones. Even though my Treo is signed up for the PDA Connect unlimited data plan, they had charged me per-kilobyte for the data I had used. This, of course, made for a far larger bill than I expected.
My first call to customer service, Tuesday morning, was rather unhelpful. The woman I spoke to assured me that, in fact, I was not allowed to have the PDA Connect data plan on a FamilyTalk shared-minutes plan, regardless of whether or not the Cingular store sold it to me or that it was how my account was set up. She put me on hold and claimed to confirm this with her supervisor. She said the only way to fix it was to sign up each phone for an individual plan (at extra monthly expense), and did not offer to refund the extra charges on my bill.
I called back about two hours later, and spoke to another rep, who examined the notes from the first conversation and had no explanation for what the earlier person might have been thinking. She assured me that I was allowed to have a Treo with unlimited data on the family plan, and added a credit to my account. She also identified the problem that caused the billing error: Apparently, my account was set up with both the unlimited and pay-per-use data plans, and the latter was adding the per-kilobyte charges to my bill, even though I had the unlimited PDA plan. She removed the pay-per-use data plan from my account.
Unfortunately, after that, my phone stopped being able to connect to the data service at all. I called again Tuesday evening, but the customer service rep I talked to was unable to find anything wrong, and since it was too late for tech support to be open, suggested I call back the next data.
Wednesday morning I called again, and was transferred to the data support line. I spoke with a fellow who had me change some of the settings on my phone; I changed the GPRS APN and user name to different values that allowed me to connect, although he assured me that the original settings should have also worked. He said he had identified a problem with the account, and had made some changes that could take a few hours to take effect. He said to call back if I still couldn’t use the original settings after that.
By Thursday morning, although I could connect with the new settings, the old ones still didn’t work. Admittedly, no one had been able to explain to me what the difference was between the two, but since the original settings were supposedly the correct ones for my device and plan, I called data support again. I spoke with another fellow who was able to identify the problem—my account’s WAP provisioning had been disabled—and fixed it by adding back the pay-per-use data plan to my account. He assured me that this shouldn’t cause me to be charged for use, since I had the unlimited data plan, but said I should keep an eye on my bill just in case.
I sense another call or two to Cingular coming when I receive next month’s statement.