The blog sphere has really beat up the Canadian cell carriers over the past few months and rightly so, but I and many others still gave in and bought into pricey long term iPhone plans with loads of hidden charges. At the end of the day it just seems like the Canadian carriers only goal is to confuse their customers into spending more money than they actually want too and further destroy their brand. One can only hope that the new national carrier Globalive will make a difference. Right now they run yakMobile which seems to have honest pricing. By honest pricing I don’t mean cheap (although they do have cheap pricing), I mean I want to pay what they say I will pay on the plan I have chosen. Why can’t all these useless fees just be part of the total fee, because that’s what they are. They aren’t special fees to the government or taxes, they are just carrier fees that are part of your plan but are not listed in the total price of your plan so it looks more attractive than it is. It’s dishonest advertising.
In the real world
Imagine if you went into a restaurant and ordered a 60 dollar meal. Then as you were walking out the door the waiter said excuse me, but there is a 6.95 restaurant entrance fee. This fee is to help us replace the light bulbs over each of the tables and many of the other expenses associated with running a great restaurant. There is also a 50 cent emergency fee. This is to help cover the costs of our first aid training in the Heimlich Maneuver in the case of choking while eating on our premises. It also appears that you used more than your limit of napkins so their is a 1.20 napkin fee on top of your total bill at a rate of 30 cents per napkin. In the event that you come here again and decide to eat our bbq chicken wings we do have a napkin value package that you could add to your meal for only 5 dollars. This would give you up to 30 napkins at no extra cost, a savings of over 44%. In the case you went over the 30 napkin limit each additional napkin would cost only 5 cents each. Sounds silly doesn’t it? but this is exactly the way our carriers work in Canada.
Anyway, today Fido called me and tried to sell me an addon plan and I also received my first Fido iPhone bill. There were actually directions on how to read my bill. What really got me though was while I was talking to the Fido representative I asked him if I could know how much data I have used so far. It was more out of curiosity than anything. He told me there was no way for them to tell me how much I had used and that I could check under my iPhone usage settings. I already knew this, but it would be nice to know my actual usage. So basically they seem to have a technical problem being able to let you know how much you are using, at least it sounded like that to me. Unfortunatly they don’t seem to have this same problem when billing you. In fact they have a huge breakdown of every single thing you have ever done with your phone.
On the up side so far I am extremely happy with my iPhone and I don’t even mind the price of my plan. Yes it’s a little pricey, but that goes with the territory of owning an iPhone. What does bother me is that I feel like the carriers are always trying to pull a fast one on us. If they aren’t trying to up sell you something, stop you from canceling a service with hard sell tactices, then they are trying to trick you with your bill. Carrier: “These aren’t the numbers you’re looking for”. We mumble back: “Those aren’t the numbers we’re looking for”. Carrier: “move along”. Us: “mmmm iPhone… shinny”.