GrandCentral Changes Your Telephone Number Without Consent

GrandCentral is informing select customers that their phone number will change on August 25. The feature-rich service recently acquired by Google bills itself as “one number for life,” which is then linked to your existing phone numbers – unless you are one of the unlucky few who: “have been assigned numbers that are not performing to our quality standards and are being replaced with higher quality services.” GrandCentral’s full email, inside.

Verizon Sets Fire To Your Home

Verizon Sets Fire To Your Home

What’s worse than Verizon not showing up for you appointment? Verizon techs showing up for you appointment, only to set fire to your home.

Mobile Carriers Must Allow Roaming For A "Reasonable" Cost, Says FCC

Mobile Carriers Must Allow Roaming For A "Reasonable" Cost, Says FCC

The FCC announced yesterday that commercial mobile phone carriers are obligated to provide roaming connections, including mobile voice calls, text messaging, and push-to-talk services, for a “reasonable” cost. This matters most to customers of small and rural carriers, whose sometimes pay as high as $0.79 a minute to access large carriers’ networks. The political response was as expected: Democrats said the FCC should have included data transfer, and Republicans said the “light regulatory approach” was just right. Sprint said the average roaming cost per minute was four cents, and that no FCC intervention was necessary. And then Sprint ate a newborn and cackled maniacally.

Making Cheaper Phone Calls (Some Assembly Required)

Making Cheaper Phone Calls (Some Assembly Required)

If you have a landline telephone and a cable modem, then you’re in the perfect position to take advantage of cheap (sometimes free) phone calls–provided you’re willing to try one of the many oddball companies reviewed by tech columnist David Pogue in this week’s Circuits section of the New York Times.

Verizon's Replacement Phone Doesn't Work

When he follows the instructions included with the phone his activation is unsuccessful. The really sad part is that when he tries to call for help, the phone still doesn’t work. Ahh, Catch 22. Not exactly a scandal, but we like his video. There’s something all too familiar and sad about it. Does anyone want to lend him a phone?—MEGHANN MARCO

Executive Contact Info For Cingular, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon

Executive Contact Info For Cingular, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon

Contact information for the CEOs of major cellphone companies. You’ll never get to talk to them, but at least your issue will get under the noses of their near and dear underlings.

Don’t Leave Your Phone At The Yosemite Riverside Inn

    Last Thanksgiving weekend my girlfriend and I stayed at the Yosemite Riverside Inn for its proximity to El Capitan and its “Riverside Cabins with Rustic Charm.”…

Comcast Mistakenly Disconnects Telephone Number Customer Had For 54 Years

After more than five decades with the same phone number, Frances “Sugar” Shankman lost her number when Comcast mistakenly disconnected her line.” When Frances tried to get the number back, Comcast issued her a new one.

Why is My $%@#! Cable Bill So High?

Why is My $%@#! Cable Bill So High?

From MSNBC: “If your cable TV rates have gone up by 4 percent a year, you’re getting off relatively easy, according to a report last week form the Federal Communications Commission. Since 1996, the average monthly cable bill is up 93 percent, the commission reported last week.”

Contact CEOs Of Major Cellphone Companies

Contact CEOs Of Major Cellphone Companies

Inside, the phone number and mailing address for the CEOs of every major US cellphone carrier.

Cox Outsources 411 To Filipinos

Cox Outsources 411 To Filipinos

Cox has outsourced their 411 service to the Philippines, a frustrated San Diego consumer complains. “Bear” finds the operator’s accents difficult to understand and claims they, “don’t understand the intricacies of the English language.”

HowTo: Record Phone Calls

HowTo: Record Phone Calls

Spurred by our query, Lifehacker posed that very question to their readers.

How To Get Your Phone Fixed: Make It A Pay Phone

How To Get Your Phone Fixed: Make It A Pay Phone

Jeffrey Zeldman used his electrically charged noodle to figure out an excellent way to report a problem line to Verizon, a company that otherwise plugs its fingers in its ears and screams at the top of its lungs to make convolutedly impossible the process of reporting a line fault to them.

UPDATE: Win $1000

We want you to have $1000 and will give you a prize for just trying to collect it.

Who Has More Authority: Stores or Customer Service?

A complaint about a bad customer service experience with Sprint from Adam H. (which we will reproduced after the jump) got us to thinking: Do customer service employees who work in the ‘billing’ offices of phone companies like Sprint have more authority to fix payment issues than the person at your local carrier-owned phone retail store? We have a inclination that one needs to call into the service centers to get any sort of billing resolution, but wouldn’t it make sense for at least the managers at the retail operations to have the authority to fix errors, as well? Perhaps it is a trust issue—makes it too easy to tweak bills for friends when you can work with them face-to-face.

Georgia Bill To Make Cell Carrier Contracts Less Restrictive

A Republican state senator in Georgia has filed a bill that aims to prohibit cell phone service providers from forcing customers to restart their contracts just to move to a new rate plan. The pandering doublespeak from the cellular service providers in this article is sickening.

Kristin Wallace, spokeswoman for Sprint Nextel. “In principle, Sprint Nextel believes the competitive wireless marketplace is serving its consumers well and that regulation of wireless service would be harmful to innovation and costly for consumers.”

Caran Smith, a spokeswoman for Verizon Wireless, said … “By limiting a carrier’s contract options, the state in effect is limiting a consumer’s flexibility to move to rate plans and take advantage of services that meet their wireless needs.”

We understand that to subsidize the cost of phones your carrier wants to lock you into a contract—really, we get it. But there’s no way to justify the inability to switch plans to suit your needs within your contract period. (Not to mention the inability to purchase your own phone independent of the carrier subsidy and use their service on a month-to-month basis without using pre-paid.) (Thanks, Erendira!)

T-Mobile and Cingular Call Records Available for Purchase Online

T-Mobile and Cingular Call Records Available for Purchase Online

Lest you think your cell phone records were private—even if you are a high-profile candidate for the U.S. presidency—AMERICAblog has proved you incorrect by purchasing General Wesley Clark’s cell phone records for $89.95.

Former Cingular CSR Speaks: “Having worked there I would never do business with them.”

Steve W. is a reformed call center representative for Cingular who wrote in just to share his experiences during the storied Cingular/AT&T merger. If you ever had any reason to wonder why your account might have been screwed up during the transfer, his account sheds quite a bit of light.

I just wanted to drop you guys a line about Cingular. I was until recently an employee, I was a Call Center Rep. for the Northeast Region, thats pretty much everything north of Virginia not including NYC and New Jersey. Also I’m not particularly disgruntled, I left of my own accord for a better position but I thought I would shed some light on the practices that lead to the problems that some of your readers experience.