also, dear apple: pull your finger out. you're pissing me off.

Posted on Posted in electricity is my crack, journal

Dear Telstra: Perhaps you genuinely have no idea. If so, let me enlighten you. You do not, in point of fact, offer value for money. Your plans are pretty much an offer to empty my bank account for me. 500MB data (which is only a temporary "bonus", and you normally offer 300MB), when every other telco is offering at least 1.5GB on commensurate plans? Stop resting on your "we own the infrastructure" laurels and start catering to a demographic that isn't 50+ and beaten into submission by your "telecommunications cost money and there's nothing you can do about it! mwa-ha-ha!" attitude.

Dear Optus: Er, 'no'. Don't think I haven't noticed your coverage map can't be zoomed, and is presented in a format that makes it impossible to determine coverage at any detail finer than a continental level. That's not helpful. Also, your caps look excellent value, but only if you don't bother examining what's excluded (i.e. pretty much everything) from the cap value. I for one would prefer you offered a more modest cap which included everything, rather than these over-inflated plans designed to lure in yet more customers with promises of a service your already strained and congested infrastructure simply can't deliver.

Dear Virgin: Much as I'd sorta prefer a middle-of-the-road path that you don't offer, I can see the value in splitting your plans to cater for those who prefer to talk vs those who prefer to gobble data. Good on you. But, seriously, are you KIDDING me with that excess data charge? $2.40 per MB is pretty flagrant, when the other telcos only see fit to charge $0.25 – $0.50 per MB. Also, are you aware of just how bad it looks, that calls to your own customer service centre are excluded from your cap value? The point of a cap is not to have so many hundred dollars worth of untouchable value. Kindly to consider including everything in the cap, even if you have to do it at inflated rates.

Dear 3/Vodafone (since I can't tell you apart by your plans): Your plans look … reasonable. Your prices are high, but everything comes out of the cap at least. 3's plans are better, if only because there's no mention of the "bonus" data that Voda seem to be peddling to make the plans look better than they are. I don't understand why 3 can't roam onto Voda's network, and I'm afraid I could never consider signing with a company whose ability to respond to enquiries through their website is non-existent (yes I'm looking at you, Voda). Also, your early exit fees? Can bite me.

Picking between you all is like a finely-orchestrated torture which makes me choose precisely which kind of pain I'd rather endure for the next two years.

5 thoughts on “also, dear apple: pull your finger out. you're pissing me off.

  1. It is precisely fear of dealing with telcos that has kept me a Virgin prepaid customer for the last however many years: I simply have no desire whatever to go mucking about and looking for a better deal when it involves dealing with Them. Plus and also, I use my phone as a clock much more frequently than as a thing to make or recieve calls/texts, so prepaid is fine. For me. For now.

    Kudos for successfully navigating their bullshit!

  2. Vodafone's website drives me INSANE.

    Not to mention the extremely irritating hip-cool voice you get when you ring up to get your messages. Somehow, without even realising, I've obviously fallen out of a demographic.

  3. @Foz – I've been with Virgin (post-paid, but not on contract) for ages for pretty much the same reason. I'm an SMS-only kinda girl. Looking for plans for a new phone is excruciating. There is no such thing as a good deal, full stop. I don't know that I've found safe passage through the marshes so much as caught sight of the lights and fallen into the water. Le sigh.

    @Peter – the only website worse than Voda's is Optus', with its "zany" animals and its insistence on telling you that, even though you've just landed, your session has expired, please go back to the homepage and re-load your session. And I hear you on the demographic. Not sure who these telcos are catering to, but it's not me!

  4. Lol. My only advice: don't go within a thousand feet of Vodafone. I've had to deal with their customer service (read: INSANELY SHIT AUTOMATED VOICE SERVICE THAT MAKES YOU WANT TO STAB EVERYTHING) in the past when trying to set up their internet on my computer, and it is painful times ten to the power of get rooted. DO NOT WANT.

    1. Heh. I got turned off Voda by their plans (full of tricks and caveats and omissions, looked exceptionally dishonest: at one point their 2GB of data on a promised plan turns into 500MB when you add the plan to the shopping cart!) and by their complete failure to respond to any enquiries. In the end I went with Optus — but mainly because Voda/3/Virgin are running at a 6-or-more-week wait and Optus were promising 5 business days.

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