November 21st, 2002

O2

Some of you might recall a few months back, me going on about how wonderfull T-Mobile were and how excelent their customer service was.

I still stand by that.

Now, take all of the good things I said, invert them so that it is a statement of bad things then double it, and you have some idea of what I think of O2 thus far.

I don't usually take opinions of companies barely two weeks after having gone with them but these lot have just made me mad.

I moved to O2 for the rather shallow reason that it was substantially cheaper. T-Mobile were offering me 100 minutes and 100 text for �29. O2 were offering 200 anytime any network minutes and 300 text for �30. This looked to reduce my bill by around �20 a month.

I eventually decided to go with O2 despite many great attempts on T-Mobile's customer staff (who were exstreemly friendly and co-operative) to produce counter offerers. My last counter offer was really good actually. 150 anytime any network minutes, 200 text and �28 and the same phone O2 were offering. I thought. "well I might as well stick with them" (but I'd ten minutes before ordered my new O2 contract)

I rang up O2 sales line to cancel this and buy me some thinking time - well within my rights to do so but they said "sorry, it's gone through" I was like "can't you just cancel it" they were like "no, you'll have to wait for your phone to arrive, then contact us to arrange sending it back." I was like "well it was dispatched less than half an hour ago, surely you can just tell them not to send it tommorrow monring" she was like "no".

So that fucked me off

In the end I settled to just let O2 give me a new contract.

So they did

Then the problems began again.

First of all their website was a pile of wank. I'm on a so called 'online' tarrif which means i'm supposedly meant to do everything online to sort out my account. Customer services is 50p a minute and only open from 8am-8pm. This would be fair enough if it weren't for the fact their website is one of the worst written I've ever seen. Slow, buggy, and probably the worse laid out and dead linked I've seen for such an important customer site. My first task was finding out about issuing them with my PAC number to transfer my number. This took me about half an hour to find the relevant place to fill in. When I finally found it it turned out to be one of those form pages that are front ends to sending them an email. I soon found out the real customer care email address. So I sent the email, they took two days to respond to it and said the number would be transfered in a week!

In a weeks time (last thursday) my T-Mobile died but my O2 didnt work. This meant that I had no way of receiving calls on my propper number that everybody knows so if anybody wanted to contact me they couldnt except a handfull of close friends who had my temporary number much to their confusion.

It wasn't for about five days (this tuesday) that my old number finally came online with O2, even after me mailing them to complain and getting fobbed off. For the first 12 hours or so, I couldnt send text messages either. I speant the good part of 40 minutes trying to find something about this on their website but to no avail. This was after I got in from a late shift so no hope of 50p a minute being open.

And since then I've been having patches of about ten minutes here and there where I cant send text messages. (presumably because the networks too busy.)

In eddition there are little things I miss about O2. The fact voice mail notification is in the form of a text message that tells me to dial 901 not the little message you get up that says "new voice message" and when you select it it takes you straight to voicemail. And propper delivery reports. Ones where you get a "pending" and a "received" and a "failed" with little messages with arrows. O2's delivery reports are laughable. You have to explicitly type "*0#" before every message - no menu selection - and then you only get a report when the message is sent - it comes up from the user and says it has been sent. Appaling.

So I am not happy. If it was less than 14 days i'd consider cancelling and moving back to T-Mobile because despite being pricier I have finally grown to think that the extra cost is worth it for the excelent service they provided me with over the trouble free two years I had with them. I have had an incalculatable more amount of trouble with O2 in the two weeks I've been with them than the two years I was with T-Mobile.

So I am pissed off.

Now my number is transfered I hope things to get easier and I can finally reap the benefits of the cheaper tarrif but it goes to show, price isn't everything and I'd make everybody seriously think twice about why they're opting for a particular provider - be it mobile phone, isp, supermarket the works - before you buy. There's a moral in this story somewhere.