Data bundle bombshell

Data bundle bombshell

Lots of people don’t know the difference between bites and bytes – but one tough customer refused to be bitten.

Data  bundles,  bandwidth, gigabytes, megabytes – whatever they call them, certain internet service providers clearly hope that most consumers are either too busy to be bothered to know exactly what they are buying, or simply pretend to understand the techie jargon. Altech Autopage Cellular, for example, was confident their new customer was an IT illiterate when they sold Christine Kinsman of Benoni their new data bundle “special” in April.

That month the company distributed fliers promoting a mobile data bundle of 40 gigabytes at an industry low of just R189 a month. On April 15, Kinsman signed a subscriber agreement for the special offer. According to the contract she signed, each month for the following twelve months she would receive 20 gigs for peak time, plus another 20 gigs of night access. This was by far the best deal available in the country at the time.

The following day, she received a text message advising her that 7.5GB midnight data and 2.5GB peak data had been uploaded on to her account. This didn’t seem right, as a pro-rata amount from mid-month should have been 10GB each. She immediately called Ariel, the Autopage Cellular agent who had signed her up. Ariel didn’t seem to know what had happened, but promised to investigate.

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Submitted by : Elaine Edwards on 2013-12-01 15:52:12
I wish you could do the same for me with a Liberty Life Policy
I have aged 30yrs since trying to get joy from them

Editor's Note
We would happily look into it. Feel free to contact our News Desk.
Submitted by : Niki Moore of Durban on 2013-11-24 05:42:51
I would suggest you study cell-phone charges in general. When you sign a contract, it is for a certain amount of airtime/data/what-have-you. If you go over your allotted time, you get charged punitive rates. They do not give you a running total of how much you have used, they do not warn you when you are nearing your limit, they do not put a cap on your time, and they do not inform you when you are over your limit and paying premium rates. When I told MTN that this was in contravention of the Consumer Act (where a service provider cannot charge you for a service you don't want), I got a 'do-I-look-worried?' response. MTN (and I think all service providers) make it so difficult for you to take this anywhere (automated call centres, stonewalling 'service consultants', promises for investigation that never materialise), that most people give up. And they say to themselves "Oh, it was just a hundred rand or so." But as you say in your article, a few rand over millions of customers adds up to some rather nice unethical profit....
Submitted by : R YOUNG of RONDEBOSCH on 2013-11-23 08:36:19
But she wanted the data, not the money.

Editor's Note
Exactly that's why passed data were being given back to her, but they had to put some value (could be for auditing/accounting purposes)... She got more data (60GB) per month...
Submitted by : Sven Stocklose of Port Elizabeth on 2013-11-22 19:42:24
This is standard operating procedure for all the communications companies! I have had numerous problems with them, and will be having another 2 court cases added to the one I already have against them!! They constantly ignore your requests, do not escalate queries, and each time you have to start over. They lie to you constantly, and try and cover it up!! And then we havent even started with the incompetence of ICASA yet who do nothing to regulate the industry! They have even threatened me when I tried to lodge a complaint against a company...


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