Verizon changes

It really doesn't seem that long ago, but with today's news that Verizon will be charging an extra $2 a month for some methods of bill payment starting Jan. 15, 2012, we got to thinking about some of the bigger changes we saw in 2011 -- and exactly 366 days before this latest move takes effect. To wit:

And both of those major changes came on Jan. 16. That's not really a great surprise -- start of the year and all. But does anyone want to do some doomcasting and predict what Verizon customers will lose come January 2012?

 

Reader comments

Verizon keen on making major changes in January, it seems

58 Comments

Everyone remember though that if you signed a new 2 year contract before that change in January 2011 you can still sue 1 more early upgrade. You have to call Verizon first before upgrading so they can change your upgrade date to the new one "1 last time". I did and was pretty easy just told customer service rep for Verizon on the phone (has to be a phone rep by dailing *611) and she changed my date to 2 weeks ago so I could take advantage of Best Buy offer for the HTC Thunderbolt for free. Yes free. So I upgraded from HTC Incredible to the free promo for the Thunderbolt. also keep in mind that if you already have the old unlimited mobile web and email package offered before for $30.00 you don't have to change to for new tier level data packages. Their way to screw you more and steal your hard earned money. Plus the old data package above does not degrade your data sped wither like T-mobile and Sprint due. Always 4g LTE if your phone has that technology or 3g for other smartphones. Just a lurks bit of my personal experience and knowledge from previous experiences from the dreadful and un-understanding Wireless Phone and Data Companies trying to rob and rape its customers that make it possible for them and their companies to operate and stay in business.

"Plus the old data package above does not degrade your data sped wither like T-mobile and Sprint due"

You are incorrect on this. Sprint does NOT do that. AT&T and T-Mobile do.

That's because we will find out we are on the lower tier 4G.

You have ...

1. "constantly intermittent"
2. "intermittent"
3. "3G with 4G back up"
4. "After hours 4G"
5. "weekend 4G (excluding Saturday and Sunday nights after 9pm ET)
6. and 4G that work 2 out of 4 times you try it.

The G in 4G is now for gamble...

other carriers need to step up their game so that walking away to better options is on the table for customers.

Other carriers do have better options. Sprint has unlimited data and is releasing LTE in October 2012. AT&T has HSPA+ and LTE although their customer service is terrible, they don't allow sideloading (we can get around that of course), and their phone lineup pales in comparison to that of other carriers, T-mobile has 42 mbps HSPA+ which doesn't have the battery drain issues of LTE and WiMax, and meanwhile Verizon is charging you to pay them? That is the most backwards logic ever. Want to pay us online? It's faster and more convenient for us and we don't have to employ people to do anything with the check you send in the mail because the entire system can be automated, so please pay us online! Also, we are charging YOU a $2 fee for OUR convenience. Talk about passing along the savings to the consumer...thank God the T-mo AT&T merger was blocked.

The big thing that these other carriers - including AT&T - don't have is the wide service area that VZN has. When their network is up, they're the only network that offers reliable service at my home, so I don't have much of a choice.

Hey, your data is a little old. AT&T enabled sideloading a looong time ago. Also, their customer service has never sucked for me. Sorry you had a bad experience though. :(

Isn't this how the policy is now? I seem to remember the exact same anouncement one year ago. They took away NE2 discount and also took away annual upgrades for the primary family line. So what exactly changed this time?

Edit: nm. Rcpa schooled me.

He's reminiscing about changes last January and wondering about the changes that will come this January.

I too found it confusing and had to re-read it a couple of times before I understood what he was saying.

Not sure why it's so hard to comprehend. What he wrote was in plain English. "...and exactly 366 days before..."

It's because we skim the article looking for important information. The headline and the first sentence set us up to think the article was about changes coming in January. Then we skip ahead to what we thought was the meat of the article, which was a bullet list of changes. Then we scratch our heads thinking "Doesn't Phil know this is the way it's been for months?". Finally we have to go back and re-read the first paragraph to discover that the bullet list has nothing to do with the changes coming in January.

AS long as people keep flocking to them they will keep pushing the limit of what is acceptable.

This. 100% this. As consumers, we need to vote with our wallets.

Forgive the crude analogy but I'm not bending over and taking it just because you're good looking or you're the popular guy and the fact that you deem me stupid enough to, is an insult, Verizon.

But cattle will do what they do best and continue to moo in Verizon's direction, giving them all the incentive they need to continue to give us a lot less and take a lot more.

They're giving more coverage and faster rollouts than every other carrier. I would -love- for someone to compete with them but nobody's stepping up.

So when AT&T and sprint have full LTE coverage, what is everyone going to say then?? LTE is really all verizon has right now. But that will change within a year from now.

The problem is to vote with our wallets we need to have options. The problem is the American system is set up to give as few options as possible. Two different 3G systems, three different 4G (and I'm not sure but I have a strong feeling even the LTE networks run on different frequencies). The CDMA networks don't support CSIM/UICC cards preventing you from buying a phone from one company and moving it to another. And on top of all the pessimist in me sees the companies competing to see who can give the minimum amount of service/perks at the highest price. When Verizon announced they where getting ride of yearly phone upgrades Sprint didn't say "Oh, but we still do if you qualify for out Gold Premeir account", they said "We're pushing upgrades to every 22 months".

None of the changes mentioned in this post are as major as the end of unlimited data that came mid-year.

I wish the other companies (AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobil etc..) would step up their game to compete better with Verizon. This kind of stuff Verizon has been pulling over the past couple of years, increasing rates and more charges for things they never charged for before and customers getting less for it equates to a company which has a Monopoly in its sector. Although Verizon doesn't actually have a Monopoly, it sure is acting like it does. It seems they are willing to grab more and more money from their customers while giving them less without worrying about losing them to their rivals.
So what changes can we expect from Verizon in 2012? Paying more for less in everything from Cell Phone service to Internet to FIOS.

Maybe by 2015 they'll be offering complementary rape every time you sign up for a new contract or renew an old one?

We all know unlimited data is going to go away eventually.
Could be the next thing we loose. Those of us lucky enough to still have it.

ditto here. if I lose my unlimited data, they need to UP the freakin tiers. 2GB a month for 30 bucks is a joke. I use 2GB a week on netflix during lunch times. here's a thought: Sprint is rumored to be losing their unlimited data as well, so maybe things will change for everybody as far as the tiers go. MAYBE.

There are three of us in my family with unlimited data - one of them a teenager. The only way I would consider keeping a data package for any of us, especially the teenager, is if they implement a way of cutting off your data when you hit your limit to prevent accidental overage charges. I know they have the widget to monitor yourself, and that is handy, but accidents could still happen. They do need to change to tiers as well. They are ridiculous. If we are all forced to go to a plan and no one is on unlimited anymore, then there won't be those few that use a ridiculous amount of data that punish those of us that use 3GB or 4GB at most every few months.

The only acceptable way of creating tiers is to keep the current pricing to make it cheaper for those who don't use as much. They charge $20-25 a month right now for unlimited data (or 5gb, they're kind of vague on what they offer). As such they can create tiers where $25/month gets you unlimited, and $5/month gets you 1 gb and such.

Don't say that! I need to continue to abuse my unlimited data privileges! That's the whole reason I have Sprint!

Don't say that! I need to continue to abuse my unlimited data privileges! That's the whole reason I have Sprint!

The change in their upgrade policy and shortening of the return period was probably because of the iPhone I'm guessing... Sprint did the same thing about a month before their launch of the iPhone by axing the premier customer program (which allowed you to upgrade every 12 months) and shortened the return period from 30 days to 14.

I used to work for Verizon and now am with sprint. It is 100% correct that the changes were due to the iPhone and Apples terms.

I went on thier facebook page early this morning voicing my frustration with the $2 charge. The a$$holes keep deleting my posts. As it stands now im on day 2 with no 4G service.

Is AT&T actually any less expensive than Verizon? It seems a lot of people here condemn Verizon and make stupid statements about people being cattle. Before calling people names, you have to understand why people are with Verizon, and it is certainly not because they like the color red or are cattle, they like service offered by Verizon vs the competition.

For me, it is due to the simple fact they are the ONLY provider where I live that can offer me service and they are the only provider than can offer service in most pleaces throughout the western states (outside large city areas).

In addition, they are reliable and their customer service is great when compared to AT&T or Sprint (been there done that).

Would I like competition? Hell yes! Bur at this time, there is NO competition.

As a matter of fact, yes, AT&T does offer more.
They offer rollover minutes, and now they reflect Sprint's "Any Mobile, Any Time" free cell phone to cell phone calling, and their 2GB data is $25. per month as opposed to Verizon's $30. per month.

So in review, you pay the $5. less on AT&T than with Verizon for basically the same plan, & you get the rollover of unused minutes, free calls to any cell phone on any network, all for $5. less.

As for AT&T's customer service, they seem to be improving a bit. I have called them 5 times over the past 2 months (when I switched from Sprint), and only once did I receive a rep that sounded like she was chewing her face on a bad hair day. They seemed friendly & helpful to me. Now Sprint on the other hand, they have been rude to me almost 50% of the time that I was with them (6 months).

Verizon is good, but their network isn't looking to much like "America's most reliable network" these days. My Xoom is down more than it's up it seems.

Ok...let me know when AT&T extends their network to offer service at my home, and give me an unlimited data plan like I have with VZN, and I'll be there. Because paying $5 less for no service at all would be a little silly.

In my experience, the biggest reason people go with VZN is because they offer better coverage in most areas. For my money, that's worth an extra five bucks.

Depends on how you look at "being more expensive." The voice plans from what I remember when I left AT&T for VZW are priced exactly the same. The difference comes in in other areas. Like when I was with AT&T I had unlimited txt and unlimited mobile to ANY mobile calling. I only had a 700min plan then and never went over. Not to mention the roll over there if you needed them. Being VZW didn't have that option, I had to go with the 1400min plan. Their unlimited txt plans are priced the same. Data was a bit different but not much more expensive. I do however pay more for two lines with data than I paid for 4 total lines with AT&T. Two of those had data and two did not. So being more or less expensive is relative to what you doing.

Yep I just love it when people bring up how much cheaper they think AT&T is:

Minutes they are almost exactly the same. Only difference is the highest tier below unlimited has 100 more minutes than Verizon. AT&T offers rollover which is more of a gimmick than anything (an attempt to placate those who would be tempted to go to prepaid) as they expire after 12 months and the average cel phone customer only uses about $200 billable minutes a month anyway.

Both offer unlimited messaging for $20 on individual plans (with AT&T it is an add on; with VZW it is just a different plan that includes minutes and messaging but the cost difference is the same). AT&T wants $30 to give unlimited texting to all the lines on a family plan but the difference between talk and talk and text on Verizon is still only $20. With AT&T you have two choices for texting. Pay per message and unlimited no middle ground. Verizon has a bundle at $10 which includes unlimited Verizon to Verizon plus I believe 250 other messages.

If you have unlimited texting (or unlimited family messaging) you also get unlimited any mobile calling. Verizon has Friends and Family (5 numbers -- 10 on a family plan -- landlines or cel phone that do not count toward your monthly allotment). AT&T ditched A-List (the same thing) this fall.

The major difference between the two comes with data. Verizon offers 75MB for feature phones for $10 and for the same price AT&T offers unlimited (no tethering). Verizon offers smartphone data tiers starting at $30 for 2GB. Tethering is $20 extra and data overage are $10/GB. AT&T has smartphone data plans starting at $15 for 200M MB but that is a joke sine the only smartphones that use that little data are Blackberries and even then there is a good chance of going over. The only people who can really use this plan is the people who are buying smartphones just to be cool and dont use them hardly at all (or are always in range of WiFi). They have 2GB for $25 which is a savings of $5 over Verizon, and 4GB plan for $45 which includes tethering. They have the same $10/gb overage.

In the end of the day a smartphone with the 450 minutes, unlimited texting and 2GB of data is going to cost you $85 + fees and taxes on AT&T and $90 + fees and taxes on Verizon, so AT&T saves you a whopping $50.

That's another reason I could never live outside the city... I'll stick with Sprint... No surprises and excellent where I live.

I'm guessing that they announce officially that data is only available 25-27 days per month They've been testing us out and we haven't made too big a stink, so why not?

glad that i left them after 8 year of being a loyal customer ,im really enjoying my exhibit ii 4g unlimited data first 5 gb is 4g, plus wifi calling and 100 minute unlimited text, just for $30 a month well its about $31.60 after taxes. keep it up t-mobile im lovin it.

Charging someone to pay you is just not okay. I am still waiting to hear anyone come up with a convincing argument to the contrary.

Is there any question about Verizon's backing of the AT&T/T-Mobile merger. With less competition, they will be allowed to do this kind of crap whenever they want with no consequences. I am frustrated that a company that people sign a 2 year contract with are allowed to change policies at will. I understand that doing away with the unlimited package did not hurt those that already had it but this extra charge does. I pay my bill online and it is in no way cheap. I feel that Verizon should be able to eat the credit card charge on my $200 bill payment.
It is not like they are giving us anything exceptional. I have to purchase a network extender to get service in my in-laws house because they don't guarantee service in buildings. Where is it that most people spend their days? In a building!! We buy 4G phones because they are better and faster but in the past 2 weeks since I bought my GN LTE has been down twice! We are becoming complacent with sub-par service and looked past their BS because they are the biggest/best. I told customer service the other day that I would recommend them as the lesser of all evils. I hate that feeling but love my GN.

Your state may have rules prohibiting this type of surcharge, if everyone fires off an email to their state attorney general we can probably stop it.

Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 140D, Section 28A...
(2) No seller in any sales transaction may impose a surcharge on a cardholder who elects to use a credit card in lieu of payment by cash, check or similar means.

My read is that in Massachusetts they can offer a discount for paying cash, bot not a surcharge for not doing it.

Right, but it is not a surcharge for paying with a credit card.
It is a surcharge for not using auto-pay.

..unless I read it incorrectly

Still holding my claim that new contracts after march whether you are existing or a new customer will be tiered data.

BTW I miss free Holiday minutes.