Dear Verizon Wireless,
I have been a loyal customer of your cell phone service since I was 16. You provided the best service at a reasonable price. You allowed me to get a nice phone for very little money and pay it off on my bill every month. Then, you would reduce my bill after the phone was paid for. Those were the days! Unfortunately, times have changed.
Since the smartphone revolution, the wireless industry has changed. Everyone wants their handheld computer to be connected at all times with data running through their fingertips. I get it. I have a smartphone as well. I had one since the first Blackberry. This means that you had to change your business model in order to deal with the influx of data users. Unfortunately, you forgot about people that don’t need that type of service or don’t want all of the bells and whistles.
I started noticing a trend when I got my first Blackberry. You subsidized the phone in order to get me in another contract. Since I was a loyal customer, I didn’t mind being with you for another 2 years. Even-though you subsidized the phone and I assume tacked the price of the phone onto the monthly bill in order to get it paid for, you stopped reducing my bill. At the end of my contract, when my phone should have been well and paid for, I couldn’t get you to reduce my bill. This didn’t sit well with me.
It appears now that all you do is give people a low price on a phone, then charge them high prices each and every month. The phone gets paid for after a few months, but bills don’t get reduced. You pocket all of the rest. Now, I don’t have a problem with you making profit. I understand fully how business works. Hell, I run one. I do have a problem with you new pricing model.
To set the record straight, I have been off of Verizon for nearly 6 months. I was testing other services while I was still with Verizon. The reason I did this was because your pricing was getting out of hand. My wife and I were paying $150 a month to have two smartphones. We used less than 450 minutes a month and rarely went over 1GB of data between the two of us. We are NOT heavy data users. I am near WiFi all day long, so I was rarely using your data network. The issue was that we could only get 500MB of data for $10/month or 4GB for $30/month. Why such a gap? That doesn’t make any damn sense.
Since I don’t like the status quo, I decided to look at other service providers. Mainly the low cost options. I tested out Straight Talk and I liked it. You can see my Straight Talk review if you would like. I used it for some time and really enjoyed the connection and data speed. It worked for me. I was then given the opportunity to try out Walmart Family Mobile. I have been on this plan for a few months. This plan works for me and the price is awesome.
After trying out and liking Walmart Family Mobile, I made sure to cut ties with Verizon for good. The hitch in my plan was that my wife didn’t care to move. She liked the service and had no idea how much we were paying. I told her a few times, but it just didn’t sink in.
After jumping ship, I told her that the bill would go down. Since there was only one phone on the plan, instead of two, math dictates that the bill would go down. Hell, it should go down by half! I guess I wasn’t very good in math, because that is not how you do it. We got our first bill the other month that was just for my wife’s service. It should have been around $75 with taxes included. Unfortunately, here is what you charged:
What in the hell? How do you take one phone off a plan that was $150 with taxes and then charge $90 for the other phone? Is this how you do math Verizon? It seems that way.
Since my wife’s phone is old by technology standards, we decided to drive down to our local Verizon store and see what could be done. Maybe there was a mistake or we could get her on another plan. After sitting around for about 25 minutes and perusing the phones, we got someone to help us out.
Side Note: The new financing plan that you have along with all of the other providers is ridiculous. People shouldn’t be financing their phone just to be able to upgrade. We have a debt problem in this country and you are not helping!
After pulling up her information, the sales rep told us that we were getting the cheapest price. Since the plan she was currently on was grandfathered in, it would be more expensive to switch. Wait, What??
For those that don’t know, let me explain your new pricing
scheme model. You now have the share everything plans. Instead of each phone having its own data allocation, this amount is now shared between the devices on the plan. Here is the breakdown that the sales rep gave us.
Smartphone Access: $40/month
1GB Data Allocation: $50/month
So, now your cheapest plan is $90/month if you want to have data access? You tack taxes and fees on top of that and you are hitting $100 easy. How is that a deal? How did we get to this point, Verizon? So anyone that wants to get data on their smartphone now must pay you $90/month. If I was still on your service and our plan needed to change, then here is what the breakdown would be if we kept our current data amount.
Smartphone Access: $80/month (2 phones)
4GB Data Allocation: $80/month
Yes, so now our price would be $160 per month and then taxes and fees would bring it to $175/month. Now, that is ridiculous.
Our Final Goodbye
Well Verizon, your new pricing model did not sit well with my wife. She looked at your price and said, NOPE! We went home that night, bought a SIM card from Walmart and I put her on my Walmart Family Mobile plan. Guess what we are paying….
$85/month for both of us!
Yes Verizon, our price for two phones on Walmart Family Mobile is less than one phone on your plan. We also get 5GB of data for each phone. Yes, it is only 3G speeds, but that is because our phones aren’t 4G capable. I will take that price any day. The best part is that we don’t have any contract. We don’t have to stick around for 2 years. If we don’t like the service, then we can go. The other good thing is that we have unlocked phones that we own. We can take them to any GSM carrier and try out their service. No ties and no stupid contracts. In the time when people are looking to cut costs, you are increasing yours. Your ridiculous price increases made it easy for my wife and I to switch. So, for that we thank you.
Once you go no-contract, you will never go back. That is my motto now. I enjoy the freedom of not having anything tie me down. No outlandish cancellation fees to keep my with you. It feels good.
After 13 years of being your customer, I finally had to end our relationship. While you do have the best network compared to others, I just can’t take your antics anymore. I continued to be the nice guy and follow your every move. You raised rates and I paid them. I didn’t know any better. I guess is was just puppy love. Well, I have grown up and realized that there are other fish in the sea. I don’t plan on swimming with you any time soon Verizon. This is our Final Goodbye!
Sincerely Not Yours,
The Bell Family
P.S. For those that are looking for low cost alternatives to Verizon, please check out my Straight Talk Review. You can also try out Walmart Family Mobile, Virgin Mobile, Republic Wireless, Net10 Wireless, or get the $30/month T-Mobile plan. There are options out there. Just check their coverage maps to see if they can service your area.