We were early adopters, getting our first sympatico email address in 1996. My first ‘land line’ in 1973 was at a time when there were no choices, only Bell. A conservative estimate of how much money I have paid to Bell in almost 40 years: $47,000. Amount of discount offered by Bell when I inquired about the probability of switching: $15.00 per month off my $300 per month bill. 5%. Um. No.
The Big Switch to Rogers Narrative:
Monday July 23: My trusty BlackBerry Bold 9000 starts freaking out. It was over 2 years old – which in technological terms is ancient – and I am probably guilty of abusing it. .. Everytime I hit the a key it would type ‘ou’, which doesn’t sound too major until you try to write a msg. I couldn’t hang up from a phone call. Would just have to wait until it said “Call Disconnected.” Finally. Thankyou.
I own a media consulting firm, so there was no time to fart around – need a new phone right away. No time to research. Lord knows the Rogers retail staff (God Bless Them) can’t answer too many questions: “If I get this Samsung Galaxy III phone, can I sync to Outlook?” “Um” came the reply. So I stuck with Blackberry. Besides, I own some shares (Purchased 2006: $90.00. Value Today: $7.00) and so on some level, I feel disloyal to switch.
In a conversation with the Rogers rep at the Call Centre, she (rightfully) pitches me Internet, TV, Home Phone. As it happens, I have a new second television. Bell tells me they have “activated” it, but it sits on that message: “Searching for the Transponder.” If I subscribe to an HD PVR at $10 additional per month, Bell will send someone out. If I don’t agree to that, well, tough. My reply is that well actually – Rogers has offered me everything at 1/3 less> After 39 years, what are you prepared to offer?”
Transfer to the Loyalty group – or something. No problem, $5.00 of your internet and $5.00 off tv and $5.00 off the landline. Great, instead of $300 per month it will be $285. And still no-one out here to fix the new second television.
So, about 90 minutes on the phone (TV theme packs !?!) The time had come to say the words: “Yes, I’ll switch.”
Off to my nearest Rogers store to pick up a new phone. Settle on the BlackBerry Torch. Oddly, it is No Charge to me, whereas the latest BlackBerry Bold (9900) would cost me $99.00. When I ask why, I’m told it is due to inventory. Tons of Torches. Okay, I’ll take the Torch. Be a great opportunity to get “used to” touch screen – but still had my physical BBY keyboard. “Ah, I’m Sorry. We don’t have any.” Came the reply from the Rogers boy – who looked about 17 years old to me.
Off to the next closest Rogers store. Thankfully, they had a Torch. I asked for white, they brought me grey. I asked for white again, and this time, they got the white. Then, it was on to the pitch querying my other Rogers services. “As a matter of fact,” says I “I just took the big plunge and signed up for the whole works not more than 2 hours ago.” “I bet I can get the price down” says the Rogers Plus retail boy.
Now at this point my entire day has been about Rogers, but there is only one answer when someone says they can get you the same stuff cheaper: Sure.
ANOTHER 2 hours later: I do have a better priced package.
Dear Rogers Senior Executives: This decision point has been in the making since Ted owned CKFH. Do Not Pit your retail staff against your head office staff. Don’t take 4 hours of my time one day ! And please don’t screw it up when you come on Civic Holiday Monday, August 5th – to bring cable to my house from a source that is hundreds of feet away.
As they used to say on Johnny Carson: More To Come
ByeBye Bell – It was an Expensive 39 years