Yesterday, I decided to become a real person and get a ridiculously overradiating, overpowered phone. I actually really just wanted something to type documents while on the subway, but I found it a great challenge to find a device that does that alone. Instead, I ended up with the T-Mobile Wing. It’s reasonably okay despite a terrible interface and horrible calendar software (I don’t think I’ll even use the calendar anyway).
So, I decided that having e-mail on it would be useful, but that I didn’t really need to the web service, which is slow as slow can be. The device has Wi-Fi built in, so if I found myself desperate, I would just need to find some open Wi-Fi. Anyway, I got home, waited the two hours that the store clerk said it would take for my e-mail to be activated. No luck. I figured maybe I had set something wrong, so I read the completely worthless manual and messed with all of the settings, but still no luck. I did also find that the e-mail system worked fine via Wi-Fi, so clearly, my e-mail settings were correct.
Today, I went to the T-Mobile web site and did a support chat with them. I really like this feature. It’s much more pleasant than waiting on the phone (I actually didn’t even have to wait) and when you’re calling with phone problems, sometimes you don’t have a phone to call with (a problem I ran into once with my previous provider).
I put in my message explaining that my e-mail worked via Wi-Fi, but did not work via the cell data system. Here was our conversation:
Please wait while we find an agent to assist you…
You have been connected to Valree C.
Valree C: Thank you for contacting T-Mobile Chat Service, my name is Valree and I’ll be more than happy to assist you with information regarding accessing Internet on the device. May I please have your name?
Mike Epstein: Michael Epstein
Valree C: To protect the privacy and security of the account would you verify the last four digits of the social security number or password.
Mike Epstein: ******password here********
Valree C: Thank you Mike in order for you to have access via data network you would need to get the Total Internet Plan for 19.99
Mike Epstein: I subscribed to e-mail only for 9.99
Valree C: For the T-Mobile Wing we don’t have a 9.99 e-mail plan that’s only for blackberry
Mike Epstein: Okay. Well, is it on my account that I am subscribed to an email plan? That is what the store reps sold me.
Valree C: I’m sorry for the inconvenience, but the only thing you have on the account is a 4.99 message bundle plan
Mike Epstein: Okay, well, I guess I’d like to add the Total Internet Plan then.
Valree C: Ok once its added, there is a provisioning time for up to two hours
Mike Epstein: Okay, thank you. So I should expect that it should work in about two hours from now then?
Valree C: Yes, that is correct
Mike Epstein: Okay, thank you. I would also maybe suggest letting the store at 1438 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138 know that they can’t sell the blackberry plans to wing purchasers.
Valree C: Yes, I will definitely pass it along
Mike Epstein: Thank you for your assistance. Goodbye.
Valree C: Thank you for contacting T-Mobile Chat, have a great day!
Valree C. was helpful, so that was nice, but the people at the store had no clue. I actually arrived home and told Sophia that I had gotten the phone and that the people at the store didn’t really seem to know much. It turns out, they knew so little that they had me sign up for a Blackberry service on a Windows Mobile phone. Oh so surprisingly (hmmm), this service did not work for me. Anyway, lesson here is talk to the chat people, not the store people…or something.