Here is a letter i received after filing a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. My complaint was about them not providing accurate usage reports to consumers This letter was from Verizon Wireless to the Better Business Bureau of New Jersey.
Dear Ms. *insert name here*
Thank you for contacting Verizon Wireless (VZW). This letter is response to the above referenced complaint for Mr. *insert name here*. Mr. **k expressed concern regarding the 5GB allowance associated with his Mobile Broadband account and the tools to track usage. Please accept this letter as confirmation of VZW’s resolution to his concerns. Mr. ***k subscribes to a $59.95 Mobile Broadband plan that includes an allowance of 5GB. I sincerely regret his dissatisfaction with his allowance and the tools available to track usage. I forwarded this feedback to appropriate parties and it will be taken into consideration for future enhancements.
In light of Mr. ***k concern, she he wish to change his plan, I can offer him an alternative Mobile Broadband plan for $199.99 for a 10GB allowance. Should he wish to pursue this option, he should contact me directly within 30 days of receipt of this letter. Otherwise the plan may not be available. Should Mr *** k have any questions i can be reached at *insert phone* numbers here.
*insert name here*
Executive Relations Coordinator
So they are willing to give me an extra 5GB a month allowance for $140.00 a month. That comes out to be around 28 dollars per gigabyte after 5GB which is cheaper then the overage charge of 50 dollars per gigabyte. None the less something is horribly wrong when a mobile broadband bill for such limited use can cost me about 60% of my home mortage payment for so little use *10GB per month*. They never really answered as to why we the customer cant get up to date usage reports now did they? I don’t think they can accurately track usage real time in relation to users. Thats why we don’t get an update for several days sometimes.
Keep an eye on all wireless companies not just Verizon. They are raking us over the coals right now . VZW has no reason to be competitive. They own the market pretty much right now. I do have excellant performance from VZW thats not a complaint.
Verizon Access Manager is designed to monitor usage. I shouldn't have to download additional software since it's already provided. This site isn't even up to data on usage. My data was supposed to be reset yesterday yet the data usage screen shows old data . It's VZW responsibility when setting limits to provide accurate usage readings whenever we so desire to check them.
I agree, you shouldn't have to download another software. However, it you want a solution to your problem, that's it. Otherwise, you can continue to run the risk of exceeding your 5 GB allocation while you sit here complaining. Verizon is well aware of the problem, but it still exist.
Actually you can go through 50-75MB of data in a surfing session 2-3 hours and that's just one person using the connection. Flash adds like this website uses are pretty heavy. Regardless of what Verizon wireless thinks, Mobile/Wireless broadband is the future of most all connectivity to the internet. Why do they even have a MIFI that I use that 5 users can connect simultaneously to the VZW wireless network for. How about mobile collaboration, etc, etc,.
Yesterday my usage jumped from 17MB to 578 MB just over night. In fact it actually in the past 3 reading went from 47MB rolled back to 17 then jumped forward to 578, That's only 144MB over 4 days so its not as outrageous as it may seem. On 5GB you can use 166MB per day again which really isn't much. Its just me and the spouse. Imagine if we had 4 kids in school. The majority who benefit from this service aren't travelers or city folk but us urban dwellers who live in the outskirts with no high speed broadband available. Ever try to surf on an iphone? Its about worthless. Same on a Blackberry. ala Netbook now that's where its at.
Though the price for 5GB is outlandish its for me to do whatever I want to use it for. My main use is for surfing and playing a MMO. Checking email. I've never went over but I've been close. Users are not allowed simply by the cap to enjoy the internet for all it has to offer. Wireless companies are like oil companies trying to squeeze the market for all they can get.. Last quarter VZW added 1.3 million NEW wireless customers excluding acquisitions compared to roughly 300k wired subscribers so tell me where the market is. Yeah wireless internet! Do some research mobile broadband is really the cash cow for wireless providers.
Oh btw Jim. If a customer goes over without knowledge that's a potential lawsuit for VZW. It's not an acceptable problem for the consumer to have to deal with. Not even this website is up to date on data use but its sure up to date in taking our money on auto pay isn't it? I've never had my bill rolled back or paid late. I suggest people that want to do away with caps and are for net neutrality to stay on their elected leaders rear ends. Wireless companies need to pass the buck on to where it belongs. The providers of things such as Netflix or Itunes and not the consumers who pay for their services. People need do drop the assumption that mobile broadband is used primarily by phones, berrys etc, etc.. It's not.
I agree Verizon should provide accurate, up-to-date usage data. However, they don't. As a customer, you can run the risk or going over your 5 GB, or you can be proactive and download NetMeter or some other software and solve the problem. Not to do so seems silly to me, but that's your decision.
Personally, I would never use Verizon wireless broadband as my primary ISP. To me, 5 GB is not enough capacity. I use it for travel and as a failback for when my Charter cable internet goes out. If you're trying to use it as your only source, I think you're not going to be happy with it. If you live where Verizon is your only option, that's your decision, but Verizon is under no obligation to tailor their business model to fit your needs. That's a business decision for them to make.
You miss the point. For MANY of us who live in rural areas, wireless is the only viable alternative. Verizon provides the POTS lines around here and the service has been getting worse and worse over the past two years. Our phone lines were getting so noisy and unusable for dial-up that I had to call their service department 9 times in six months. Still, the service degraded to the point where my BEST dial-up connection was 9.8 kb/S. That's right, 9800. But you say, get DSL instead... NOT available as they won't locate a substation close enough for DSL to function. All of our neighbors have the same issue. Some have switched to satellite (unreliable and expensive), some have switched to wireless (when it rains, might as well have dial up).. and some of us have switched to 3G through Verizon.
Granted, the VZW service is pretty good, but as has been pointed out, the 5G cap is ridiculous in today's environment. And yes, I have netmeter... but VZW still has the responsibility for providing accurate and timely usage information to its customers.
Verizon is also the only choice for me as well. Unless I want to pay Comcast $25,000 -- $30,000 (US) to lay a cable to my house. The point isn't the price. The point isn't the specific data limit. The point is that Verizon does and will not provide an accurate reckoning of data used so far. I too have a desk utility to track my actual usage. When Verizon arbitrarily bumps up my "usage" to over 5GB I suspect they will not find the output of my independent utility showing otherwise compelling. This month has been so crazy (negative usage charges, big jumps, etc.) I have assurances from a customer rep that I will not have any overage charges. We'll see. But calling every few days to complain about this is a waste of everyone's time. Verizon tech know their data usage reporting is **bleep**. They cannot do anything about this under their own initiative. Or so I'm told. One tech told me that somewhere on this site is something called "Voice of the customer" and I should use that to complain about the data reporting. I cannot find this.
If anyone knows where "Voice of the customer" is, please lead me to it. And we should all complain loudly and often there about this. Here we're just talking to each other.
jimfitgerald: "No, I understand your point. The Verizon product does not meet your needs so you are complaining to the BBB. It is up to Verizon to decide what product they want to offer and at what price. It is up to you to decide to buy it or not buy it. It's a simple concept actually"
If this were a simple case of "This shirt costs $50, take it or leave it," you would be correct. It's your decision and there's no grounds for complaining that the shirt is too expensive. You made the decision. You have only yourself to blame if you feel you buy it and feel you paid too much, or it was unsatisfactory in some other way you could have determined before buying it.
But the situation here is "This shirt is about $50, but we won't tell you how much it costs exactly until after you have agreed to buy it. The actual price depends on a lot of things over which we say we have no control, and we decide the actual price based on total sales estimates, delayed supply data from our manufacturers and any number of other things. We provide information in several formats for you to anticipate what the price we will ultimately charge you for the shirt will be, but they are all inaccurate, often wildly so. And we know you have no other place to buy shirts."
It isn't a matter of making a bad decision while knowing the complete terms of the agreement and regretting the consequences later. If it were, this would indeed be a "simple concept." I was sold a service and told there would be tools to track my usage so I could stay within my "budget." This was a false representation, since the tools provide are defective, as Verizon itself admits.
I have SurplusMeter (Macintosh) which I assume is similar. But if my locally-gathered usage data differs from Verizon's, do you think Verizon will accept my version of what my usage really is? From their point of view, why should they? The thing they sold did not include a provision for self-reporting data usage. They sold a thing where they determine data usage, and the false promise that they had tools to track this accurately.
Yes, if I think they are way out of line I will of course report what SurplusMeter says, but I see no incentive for Verizon to honor that information.
I graph my daily usage as reported by Verizon and it is quite hilarious, especially when it goes negative. But I won't be laughing if they claim I have gone over my budget and I know I haven't.
J Shook, I called Verizon Monday to get my account credited for the overages. After 7 months of using Verizon suddenly my usage amounts doubled. Since then I have been keeping notes, making screen shots of their usage amounts, etc. I questioned them about the negative usage they told me that I must have written it down wrong. I told them I had screen shots of it. Then he said I'll credit your account now. They claimed I had used 5389MB according to my calculations I used 2715. My amount is more in line with what I was using before they started doubling it.
When the amount first double after many calls to Verizon I was told it was a tower problem. Mulitple lighting strikes I was told. They now tell me the tower has been repaired. Last night my brother and I was coming home in a thunder storm, at the same time we said tower strike. I can see the tower from my window. One night I was standing in the kitchen saw it hit the tower and it shook my house.
My advice to any one using Verizon is to keep good notes and call every month.
Unless I pay Comcast several thousand to run the cable down my driveway, I'm stuck with VZAccess as my primary internet. I just received my bill with a $120 in overage charges. Even though I checked my usage everyday and stopped using the connection, except to check usage, when it suddenly jumped to show 5034 "as of 11-22". Usage checks on the 23rd, 24th & 25th all showed usage of 5034. My service resets on the 24th. So 1st answer, yes they can and will charge you for overage even when Usage was not showing any overage.
A call to Verizon Wireless was very frustrating. They kept repeating that the usage is only an estimate and that I needed to look at the "as of" date". Having recorded my usage daily since February I'm very familiar with the "as of date". And my estimate was off by over 10%, how can they even call that an estimate.
After I got off the phone, I did some research on the web and noticed in an article by Consumer Affairs, that we have a log button next to the Usage button. Exporting that log into Excel as a .csv file and summing up the usage for the billing period shows the usage they are billing me for. How can the information in the log and the information from the usage button be so different? And why during my 1 hour and 27 minute conversation with Verizon Wireless was this log not mentioned? So my 2nd answer, track your usage by adding up the info from the log, that seems to match what they are billing me for.
Just FYI, I received email notices that my account was at 75% and 90% on the 22nd, By that time, according to the log, I was already over my limit at 5575MB. And I had been over my limit since the 19th. I never received an over limit email.
Now my question, the difference between the Usage button and the Log seems to be connections made by National Access - Broadband Access as opposed to the majority of the connections that were made by VZAccess. While the VZAccess connections list an IP address, the National Access connections do not. The National Access connections do list a phone number, #777, while the VZAccess connections do not list a phone number. And interestingly, several, maybe the majority, of the National Access connections were made at the same time as the VZAccess connections. These National Access connections summed up to over 500Megs. What are they? How do they differ from my VZAccess connections? And how can I be charged twice for using the connection at exactly the same time?
I can't answer your question about National Access vs VZAcess. When I was spending so much time on the phone with Verizon they kept telling me to check my usage. Then they would contradict themselves by saying that it wasn't accurate. When I ask about the Usage Log button I was told it was not accurate.
I've found the Usage Log button to be pretty useless. I've seen overlapping usage and usage off the charts. One showed 2.1GB yes GB for about an hour of usage. I don't download music or movie or such.
I haven't changed the way I use the internet since I got this thing. I'm still seeing usage amounts that are not right. I have told them that I will not pay more than my normal bill. This past month they credited my account again for usage and a text message. Watch your bill I was charged for a text message I don't use text messages except to read the ones that come from Verizon.
I concede to Doodle - the Log is useless too. My Oct -Nov log seems to be what I am being billed for. But I was not billed for being over in Sept-Oct and I just analyzed that log. The usage was absolutely ridiculous including over 2G one weekday morning. I never stream video,etc and the kids were at school.
Also noticed that the status code for the NationalAccess connections is 1026. Any idea where to find out what the status code mean?
ive got unlimited down load, grandfathered in i guess, and in response to that, i get download speeds of double digit kps. currently 14.4 kps. im in a g3 area, got good signal no reason to slow me down except to get me to leave. which i will when i get a computer that isnt a mac. it is unfortunate that apple wont get another provider for wireless internet, i would pay more for good reliable service, but i dont think i will get it from verizon. it is obvious that verizon is a money grubbing corporate juggernaught, the question is how long before it implodes. an interesting statistic is the average download speed in japan is 60 mps, and in america its less than 2mps. its because of short-sighted business decisions by companies like verizon who know the customer has to take it or leave it. they know there are enough people out there who have to take it.