What’s “data roaming?” Lisa was under the impression that it meant roughly the same thing as voice roaming: using up one’s data allotment while in an area outside of your carrier’s coverage. The phone will indicate when you’re roaming so you don’t rack up expensive roaming minutes or megabytes. Except that’s not how it works: Lisa’s phone just roamed invisibly. Her mother’s apartment is in a previously undisclosed T-Mobile black hole, and she ran out of data while traveling.
Sprint fired Christian. Oh, he didn’t work for them: they fired him as a customer. He doesn’t live near any of their towers, and so he ended up doing a lot of data roaming. Displeased, Sprint sent him a letter to tell him that he was being let go. Christian called up Sprint and was told that he would be allowed to unlock his shiny new iPhone 4S and use it on AT&T. He ported his number out to AT&T, then learned that the representative he had talked to is the only person in the Sprint organization who will tell customers that they can use their iPhones on another US carrier.
Tara’s stepson is part of her AT&T family plan. He’s young, so his account is fairly locked down: he can’t buy ringtones or games or even access the Internet at all. So why did his phone rack up $50 worth of data roaming in Canada, when he was 150 miles from the border at the time of the alleged downloads? Tara doesn’t know. Her stepson doesn’t know. And AT&T Wireless isn’t all that sure, either.
Last month, the Federal Communications Commission voted to enact new rules that require national wireless broadband providers like Verizon and AT&T to provide data roaming to other carriers “on commercially reasonable terms and conditions.” Not surprisingly, Big Red is against this idea and has thus filed a lawsuit against the FCC in an attempt to have the rules reversed.
Yowza! David’s eyes popped out his head when he saw his $7,865.84 bill from Verizon.
Who’s in charge, the masters or the machines? You’ll be wondering the same thing after you listen to this iconic gem from The Consumerist archive, the infamous Verizon Can’t Do Math call, which we reposting because the original video got deleted and the posts were kind of scattered. In it, George recorded his attempts to get Verizon to explain why they said they would charge .002 cents/kbfor data roaming, and then billed him for .002 dollars/kb, a difference of about $76. Problem is, no one at Verizon can do math.