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After being with my current phone supplier for many years now on pay as you go, I thought I would have a phone on contract and checked out three.co.uk to look at their offers. I seen a great samsung galaxy ace with a deal to suit me and a good price, so I applied online...wish I hadnt had bothered!
Firstly, the website wouldn't move me onto the next screen and then errors kept appearing once I had entered my details. Eventually, I managed to get to the final screen and submit my direct debit instructions and my details to them and then had the message saying I would receive an email about my order. Didnt seem any problems so far and expected my phone to arrive 2 days later. Email came not long after I ordered, and it said that they had accepted my order and would contact me if they needed to speak to me about delivery of phone.
Following day, I had another email asking me to phone them up to give them a few more details before my phone could be sent out. When I rang, I gave my reference number to the guy on the phone, who was very rude as soon as he answered the phone, and told him about the email I had received. He couldnt understand why I had that email and then asked me if I still wanted the phone, to which I said I did. He then said I had to pay £100 towards the phone as a deposit. I told him there was nothing about this on the website and why wasnt I told sooner instead of thinking I was accepted for the phone contract. He couldnt give me a straight answer and said maybe I have bad credit, which is quite funny since I am not in debt and dont owe anyone anything. I told him I would not be paying £100, though he did tell me it was returnable after a few months. I politely told him "no thanks!" and that I would be taking my custom elsewhere.
I had always heard bad things about three so now I have found out for myself.
Not a good company to deal with!
I used to be a customer with 3 mobile following a visit to their website and seeing one of their great online offers. The website itself was simple to use and well designed and I found my entire purchase to be easy but after this was when I began to have the issues.
I had my 3 mobile phone on a contract but unfortunately my phone developed a problem which led to me needing to send off my phone for repairs which I contacted 3 mobile to sort but following a slow response I took the phone into a local store (an hour from where I was living) and asked for the phone to be sent off which they did for me but not before telling me it was an online purchase and so nothing to do with 3 stores. I requested the phone be returned to my house and then had issues where the store would not send the phone and it ended up taking me over 2 weeks to get my phone back. I then had to fight with 3 for the fact I had actually not had any phone and so would not pay for the service (eventually winning this being taken off my bill).
Following on from all of these problems I thought it could not get much worse with the phone contract and was looking forward to my 18 months being up but all of a sudden I began to get constant marketing calls from 3 mobile and another company acting on behalf of 3 and no matter how many times I informed them I did not want marketing calls they continued until I took the matter to the police who managed to stop the problem.
The final straw for me with my dealings with 3 mobile was when they did an "upgrade" leading to my phone no longer automatically selecting the network and anytime I was travelling anywhere I would need to keep re-searching for my network in order to get any available service...when I reported the matter to 3 mobile they told me to keep doing this and in time this would be fixed but offered no apology for the inconvenience leading to me going to the directors office and requesting my contract be torn up due to the service provider not being able to provide the basic service being paid for which was agreed upon immediately by 3. I then only had to chase them for 3 weeks to get the money they owed me back as the person who dealt with the complaint was suddenly never available or returning calls.
All in all I have never experienced worse service from any company and would have to say to avoid 3 at all costs as there website makes a lot of promises that you will find they just don't keep. Poor customer service, abysmal after sales care, ridiculous hoops for you to jump through to have a phone that works and you pay for the priveledge. I would not normally be so scathing as I know that sometimes it all goes wrong for some people but I know others who had the same kind of issues.
I have been using the mf622 for about three months now, and it generally performs well.
I took up threes offer of a modem with 3GB a month allowance, for half price as I already had a phone with them. It costs me £7.50 a month, and I pay £3 insurance. The insurance can be cancelled without affecting the deal apparently.
I was also interested as I had moved into a new house, and BT wanted £130 to connect me up, there was no connection charge with Three.
The modem was easy to install, as the drivers for windows XP are stored in onboard memory. The device sets itself up as a disk, installs the drivers then switches to a modem.
I use the modem in a fixed location on a windowsill near my PC. I know it sounds daft, but it seems to get a better signal there. I have full reception, i.e. 5 bars with the window slightly open, this drops down to four bars, or sometimes even three. On a good day I get just over 1MB/s this is fast enough to watch the BBC iPlayer, YouTube and the like without interruptions. Sometimes, the connection speed drops, apparently when there are several other users all connected to the same mobile mast. This does not happen too often though.
I have read about one fella who used an old Satellite dish and replaced the receiver module with his wireless dongle, this gives better reception and better directional signal strength, so you can stay locked on to one mast. The big problem here would be keeping the MF622 dry. There is also a small antenna socket, but this is supposed to only be for 3G signal, not the high speed HSDPA network that you will most probably want to be on.
Signal will also depend on local coverage, for Three UK this can be checked at http://www.three.co.uk/personal/coverage_/broadbandCoverageChecker.do
I have yet to use it truly mobile, as my laptop has stopped working, boo hiss!
There can be issues with some peer to peer services, but these can generally be worked around. The problem stems from the fact that Three sometimes shares one I.P. Address between more than one customer. I have not had this problem.
The biggest disadvantage is the connection software. The interface is a bit unwieldy, although it gives real time connection speed, so you can see if your data is streaming quickly enough. I have my PC set to hibernate when I press the power button, but it will not do this with the connection software running, even if the modem is disconnected.
Overall I am happy with the performance, and the price. The only improvement would be if the service was guaranteed at 1MB/s and above. I'm sure Three are working to improve the sharing problem as I have been with them for three and a half years now, and the service is constantly improving.