i hope this info is very helpful. i have been a customer with genie (now called o2 online) for around 3 years now. I recieved an email yesterday and basically they have an offer on for a limited period where you can get the 300 free texts and 300 wap mins a month PAY AS YOU GO sim card for FREE. I payed £20 pound for mine and they usually sell for around £12- 15 on their website, so nows the time to change if you are thinking about it. heres the deal.... It is a pay as you go sim, but u must top up £10 per month to guarantee connection (they dont disconnect you if you dont top up, but you cant use your credit!) Online Pay As You Go Talkalot Monthly subscription £10 min top up Included every month Free call minutes none Free messages 300 text Free WAP minutes 300 Call charges Fixed line & O2 Mobiles, Weekends:0-3mins/>3mins 25p/2p Fixed line & O2 Mobiles, Mon-Fri:0-3mins/>3mins 25p/5p Other mobiles 40p Text per msg / WAP per min 10p Media Messages 35p Telephone customer services 50p/minute Online Services (eCare) Free Its an excellent deal so i would advise it to anyone who texts 24/7 like me
I ordered a mobile phone from www.o2.co.uk on the 13.08.02 for a Nokia 3210, the day after i got an email telling me the order had been declined as id exceeded my mobile phone allowance? what ever that means. On the 14.08.02 we rang up there sales line and asked why we the order had been declined, apparently there had been a problem with the website and all orders that day had been cancelled. So whilst we were on the phone, we re ordered the same phone again for the same price. On the 15.08.02 the phone arrived, it was a Nokia 3330, obviously not what id ordered plus there was also 2 things missing from the box, a label set and a worldcup text voucher. As we didnt order that phone we had to contact o2. There was a letter that came with the phone with only 1 contact number on. The number given was to be used in the avent where you were unhappy with the phone. Obviously i was unhappy so i rang it up. Having been in a queue for 20 minutes i finally got through to a woman. I told her the story and she said this is the wrong number, youll have to ring customer care up which a premium rate number @ 50p a minute. I told the woman i wasnt ringing that number and that this was the number i was given. She kept telling me there was nothing she could do, i asked to speak to her manager, she told me 'no'. After arguing with the woman for about 5 minutes, she said she would transfer me to the dept that could help me. So once again i was stuck in a queue, when the phone was finally answered it turned out the woman had transfered me to the same department she was in, which obviously wasnt the right one. This woman i spoke to told me to ring up the customer care number (the premium rate number) and they would be able to help me. She gave me the same number that the woman previous had given me. obviously i wasnt getting anywhere and so in the end i had to ring up customer care. I got through to a man, i told him the story and guess what he said '
;this is the wrong number' to make things worse he said you need to call 0870 etc etc, the funny thing is this is the number that came with the phone, which was obviously wrong. I gave up and emailed o2 instead and waited for a reply. On the 17.08.02 i went to do my weekly shopping. I got to the till handed over my credit card and guess what, the card was declined. This was extremely embarressing, and i coudlnt understand it. I had to leave the store as i had no money. I returned home and checked my credit card balance online. It showed up as id been charged 99.99 for the Nokia 3330. Plus an additional 99.99 had been reseverd, plus an additional 79.99 for the original order i made that o2 had cancelled. Which if you add it up makes it 279.97 for the wrong phone. This is obviously why my weekly shopping had been declined. o2 had completely maxed out my credit card, with purchases and purchase resevations. Ive still not got this issue sorted as no one has replyed to my emails, i dont know how much ive spent on phone calls to them but im extremely enoyed. I'll never deal with this company again in whole life. Ive not got no shopping, no credit on my credit card left and the wrong phone. This is is absolutely digusting that a company can make so many messtakes like this and obviously not care when you ring them up. I wouldnt recommend them to my worst enemy. Extremely poor service, probably the worst company on the planet ! !!!UPDATE!!! Just to give you an update on the above. Today i finally got a result. I had obtained a list of internal phone numbers (not normally given to the public) to ring and complain without incurring high call charges. I finally got through to someone who was in complaints, he listened to what i had to say and offered me 5 pounds call credit to the phone for the inconvienience. This i declined as i felt id already spent that on phone calls to them and it wa
snt good enough. After arguing with the man for about another 10 minutes he increased this to 10 pounds. I still didnt think this was good enough, so i asked to speak to a manager, she was on a conference call, the man told me to ring back at dinner time. I rang back at dinner time and the woman was still wasnt available, he took me details and said she would call me back. At 4pm some 7 hours after the first call, i called the same number again to ask why the woman hadnt called me back, i was told "she's not in the office she's gone home and she wont be in tomorrow either" i told the man "customer service isnt a priority to your company is it". He said tell me whats wrong and maybe i can help you. I told him the original story in brief and he said "hang on let me see if shes on her mobile phone, she may still be in the office" after a few minutes on hold he came back and said "Shes just got back at her desk" obviously he completely lied about her not being there and her being at home. This was way below the belt, she was there all the time but obviously couldnt be bothered to answer my call. I feel that situations like mine need to be delt with fast to make the customer as happy as possible, not to be fobbed off. The escilation of the problems i encountered i do think are rare, but still they didnt handle it as well as they could of done. In the end I got the compensation increased to 20 pounds, which wasnt easy believe me. This brings the price of the phone they sent me in error back down to 79.99 which is the price of the phone i originally ordered. My opinion still hasnt changed of o2, its even worse now i feel. They simply dont care, they dont like problems and when they do occur they dont know how to handle them. They are truely the WORST company ive ever delt with. My last thoughts on this are, if a company is in the wrong, and they have well and truely screwed up.
If you dont get what you want, take the problem higher. Dont be afraid and stick to your guns. Youll normally get what you want in the end :)
At first I thought this was a great idea - free phone £20 per month 600 free messages - sounds great doesn't it? That is until things started to go wrong...... First it was my phone, it started buzzing and then turning off I phoned them to tell them about this and they bluntly informed me that it was nothing to do with them and I would have to take it up with seimens as they did not provide me with a guarantee even though it states very clearly on the site that they do provide everybody with a 12 month guarantee. After I approached the next person I talked to about the sites guarantee claim they kept me on hold for over 10 minutes (it costs 65p per minute to call their customer service line) and then just hung up on me!!!!!!!! Needless to say this matter was never resolved and I still have the same phone! Countless times I have had complaints about them and tried to phone but nobody ever answers the phone, so I tried to use ha ha ha ha ha - genie ecare - ha ha ha ha. Let me tell you a little about genie ecare (ha ha ha ) as the customer service line is 65p per minute they try and persuade you to email them your problems. Not only do they take approximately one week to get back to you they use automated responses so you never get the answer to the question you asked then you have to send another email to get a personal response. utter madness. Now to top it all off it has changed to O2 and everyone's passwords and user names have changed, I can no longer see my Bill every month (the bills do not get sent to your home you can only see them online) and I have to phone the 65p per minute line to find how much my bill is because they have not, 2 months later, sent me a new username and password. Late last month I tried to use my phone and my phone instructed me that it was putting me through, automatically, to O2 customer services. The lady that answered informed me that my phone had been cut off because I hadn't paid my bill. I proce
eded to scream at this woman down the phone when I looked on my Natwest online banking to see that she was right and my bill hadn't gone out. After some interrogating she admitted (reluctantly) that it was their fault and they would turn my phone back on as soon as I had paid my bill by card. As you can imagine I was very angry but certainly not as angry as I was this month when they did it again!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am very tempted to just pay of my line rental for the next six months and cut my contract because the thought of being stuck to Genie for another half a year is nothing short of hell!!!!!
Boasting 300 free wap minutes and 300 free sms, Genie (now 02) seemed the obvious choice for me. They offered these deals on a pre-pay tariff and offered me a good price on an up to date phone and delivered within a week....so I suppose your wondering is this a good review about Genie? Let me assure you Genie are not my favourite people. With my phone I ordered insurance, on a £200 phone its pretty much a must. I was told to activate the insurance as soon as I was told the phone was being passed on to the delivery men, with the code supplied in an e-mail. An e-mail I never recieved. So after recieving the phone (and being very happy it wasn't lost in the post) I tried to get in contact with the people at genie to see where my insurance is. E-mailing recieved no reply and phoning up their team cost me about 50p a minute and that is when you did recieve an answer. I was really unimpressed with Genie's handling of this issue, I was told I would recieve this e-mail giving me the details for activating my insurance everytime I phoned up and it seemed no one could activate the insurance without it. After being passed round from person to person trying to talk to someone from Genie that would do something about this we tried a different approach. 2 or 3 months on without any word from Genie, admittedly no money was taken out the bank but disapointly I gave up after spending countless minutes at an expensive rate on the phone to them. Placing it on the house insurance were now reasonably satisfied, but I doubt we'll ever buy a phone through genie again. My advice Genie, take better care of your customers. Respond to their needs, give them a free or local rate helpline and attually answer it.
I have been a satisfied genie pay and go customer for about a year. That is until the recent transformation into O2. Genie was fantastic. Why did they feel the need to change it? As the saying goes: “If it isn’t broke why fix it!” When I first heard about Genie and their tempting offer of 300 free messages a month I have to say I was sceptical. It really did sound too good to be true. However as a complete self-confessed text addict it was not long before curiosity got the better of me and I gave in to their tempting offer. It really was the best thing I could have done. I was like a child with a new toy. My Textlife improved no end. I could now send as many messages as I liked without worrying about credit. This was fantastic. I never experienced any problems with their service and some of their extras were very useful. For example I set up text alerts that let me know when I receive an email. I knew it was all too good to last. One day I received an alert from O2. I had never heard of them. When I read on it became apparent that genie along with Cellnet was to merge with a number of other companies creating a ‘better service.’ My tariff changed without warning. The principal use for my phone is to send texts so this change did not make much difference to me. My free messages did not seem to be effected. I was promised that the creation of O2 would make it easy to use my mobile abroad. (Two trips abroad later and there really is absolutely no difference!). To be fair to them I didn’t have too much of a problem with the merge. The main reason prompting me to write this opinion is a recent problem that arose. From the 1st of July my phone stopped allowing me to send any messages free or otherwise. This caused me a great deal of distress. At the first opportunity I went to the O2 official website thinking I would receive help. The help section was a complete waste of time
. All the information was completely irrelevant. What I really wanted was a phone number to call. However to my dismay it was a peak rate number meaning that it potentially could cost 15 pounds just to speak to someone. There were no guarantees that the problem would be sorted. This is no way to treat customers. I understand that their purpose is to make a profit but this is no way to do it. Nobody rings a customer care line for they’re own personal pleasure. I need their help but simply can’t access it. I was forced to opt for the free of charge email option. However this is obviously a long drawn out process involving exchanging a number of emails. I am sure my problem could be sorted with one call but why should I pay 50p a minute for help? As for the question of will my problem be fixed: Who knows, your guess is as good as mine. This really is story to be continued. I truly hope I can follow this opinion up with a more positive view of the company.
With a fee of £20 a month O2 offers a 3310, 500 free off peak minutes, 50 minutes to any network, 500 text messages and 500 WAP minutes. This is on BT CELLNET this network does not have great signal all over the country but has signal in most places. They offer Voicemail 901, this allows callers to leave messages when your mobile is switched off. It offers myWAP which is the mobile web and WAP community, where you can create your own wap site easily and for free. It offers findme 1500 no matter where you are, even if you dont know, findme 1500 can help. Trafficline 1200 can help when you get snarled up in traffic you can use this to avoid the traffic jams and accidents and find the best routes to take. Ifound that all these things make it a very attractive network to join, with its cheap offers which you can purchase online.
I joined Genie just before the whole O2 thing started, got myself the 600 free txts and 50 off peak minutes a day deal. This offer is not available anymore on the new O2 website. They are only offering contracts which can call ANY NETWORK, mine is not this type. When I tried to move my phone number over from Vodafone to Genie (O2) I faced a number of problems, mainly the fact the Genie had no type of customer care system. The website tells you to use the 'online form', so I did. I used the form over the period of 3 weeks and had no response. I then decided to write a letter, never had a reply now and that was over a month ago. In the end, and you will ask why I didnt before, I telephoned Genie to sort out the problem. This was of course after a polite lady from Vodafone told me that it was going to cost me a further months line rental if I did not sort this out. The reason I had not rung Genie before this is that they charge, and I joke not, 50p per minute for the pleasure of speaking to their very s l o w h e l p d e s k. The phonecall cost me 3.80 just to tell them that they really needed to hurry up, they admited it was their fault- case closed. Oh no, I looked at my online bill and saw this 3.80 charge. So I used the 'online form' to inform Genie, now O2, that I am not prepared to pay to inform them of their faults. I am still waiting for any kind of reply. This is not to metion that fact that some people are unable to txt my number as it says 'Number not in use'. I really do wish I never got involved with this company and their service, if that is what you can call it! My advice, STEER WELL CLEAR!!!
I have been with 121 (T-Mobile) for about 4 years now and since Christmas I have been quite upset with how they have started to run there company. I used 121 mainly because it was cheap to use e.g. free voicemail, good coverage (in my area), 5p txts to 121 phones and my bill was really low. Then since T-Mobile took over my bill has gone from £15 (I paid my contract upfront for a year) all the way upto £30. Why? I haven't done anything different..I txt and call the same so why the big change? Anyway I had enough and noticed that genie were still doing there deals of pay either £15 or £20 and you get blah blah free. I did think it was to good to be true but the day came when I wanted out of 121. I signed up with genie 2 months ago as they promise 600 free txts a month (they claim that if your 'silly' with this deal they will start charging you) and unlimited wap use. I paid for the £20 contract deal which gave me a free Nokia 5510 mobile phone. Got it within a week as its sent by parcel force (no extra charge). Connected it upto the network and bingo your on. But remember...genie is part of BT Cellnet (mm02) so you have a BT sim card and the logo on your phone says 'BT Cellnet' NOT 'Genie'. Anyway where I live in the Hampshire/Surrey border...the signal isn't great...that is a downside to it and I can get a signal in one part of the house but not the other and it keeps going in and out all the time. I gave the txting a go...worked fine..sent and received quickly like any other network and tried the wap...quick to get into, there wap service is good. Decided to check my bill in the genie website as I wanted to makesure I wasn't being charged...sure enough...I wasn't :) I never needed the helpline (costs abit as its an 0845). After a month they sent an email telling me my bill is ready. They put it on the web so you don't get it through your door. They had charged me £40 (remember I am on £
20 a month contract). There reason for this is that take out your first month and a month in advance....so be warned. They do this with a direct debit so makesure you have enough money in your bank account. So am almost 3 months in now and so far I have paid out just £20 and its covered all my txts and wap calls. When you work it out you need to send over 22 txts a day, everyday before you start getting charged...thats alot so the chances are that you won't have to pay for txts again. WAP is handy when your waiting outside a clothes shop for your G/F to come out :) Checking your yahoo, freeserve and talk21 emails is very handy! The txts don't roll over to the next month. If you don't use them then thats it, there gone. Make the most of it :) All the call costs are available on there website so I won't bore you with that but if your a txting person more than a phoning person then genie is the one to go for. But the prices are more or less the same as other networks, 30p a min to another mobile etc etc. I don't know a better deal anywhere in the shops or on the net. I have not needed to contact them with any problems. There network is always working. But remember this 'network' is internet based more or less, you can't walk into a shop with a problem. You either dial an expensive number or email them.
Genie Mobile is the web-based division of mm02, or, to you and me, BT Cellnet. The company, Genie, begun with a range of internet services, such as being the first site to offer free texts from the internet. It also offered free text alerts of email, cheap lcal rate home internet access and mobile 'Alerts' (offering news, horoscopes, charts etc. via text message for free). Its aim from the start was to combine the technology of the mobile and the internet. Indeed, many of their adverts used to feature the idea that their technology could change your life forever and make everything wonderful. Maybe not. Anyhow, it still offers the services listed, however, for over a year now it's also offered a virtual mobile network (Virgin is a virtual network on T-Mobile, for example). WHAT'S IT OFFER ME THEN? Genie Mobile are different to other mobile providers. Their mobiles can only be bought through their website, and there are only a limited range available. Technical support is through the internet, or very expensive premium rate numbers and there are only three tariffs available, which will be mentioned later. However, by cutting costs they are able to offer excellent deals- almost unlimited free text messages and WAP, and, if on contract, very low call charges. However, the question in my mind before joining Genie was whether it was worth the hassle of forfeiting my 0870 technical support, and range of tariffs with Vodafone to swap to Genie? WHAT IT COSTS I text a lot, and I've gradually seen my Vodafone contract bill rise. I also use WAP regularly to check email, and at 10p/min with most operators, it also gets pretty expensive. Therefore, the offer of 600 free texts a month (contract - or 300 if you connect to pay-as-you-go Genie) and free WAP looked good. I believe the actual price plans for new customers have recently changed slightly- and therefore, it seems a good idea to check
the Genie website- or 02 as it's all labelled up now! Bah! Things were different in my day... I found the new range of price plans more difficult to get my head around than the old ones, but maybe that's just me- be sure to read the small print carefully however! GETTING YOUR NEW MOBILE You can connect to Genie by buying a new PAYG mobile from their website, much in the way you do with other networks, by buying a PAYG sim-card (or, for the non-technical, the little piece of plastic that lets you connect to a network :-) ), by buying a contract sim-card, or by getting a free phone on contract. I connected by buying a PAYG sim-card, so this is really the only way I can comment on. Firstly, remember that you can only use Genie sim-cards in phones that; 1)Will work on Vodafone or mm02/Cellnet. These are either phones purchased on these two networks, or phones which are dual or tri-band. This is because T-Mobile and Orange operate on different frequencies to Cellnet, which is used by Genie. 2)Are not locked to Vodafone, T-Mobile or Orange; Basically, you should be able to use any *ex-BT Cellnet mobile (contract or PAYG) *ex-Vodafone contract mobile *mobile bought sim-free (ie not connected to a network) With any other type of phone a small fee is likely to be payable, to 'unlock' the phone. There's loads of detail on this on the Genie site, although they refer to it as 'unlatching'. The PAYG sim-cards have been up and down in price like a yo-yo. This is my first complaint, as the service they provide has not changed. It always annoys me to think that something I've bought for £15 may be given away next week. Anyway, to buy the sim-card you go through their website, which is easy to use, and within 2 or 3 minutes your sim-card will be ordered. I was also impressed with the fact I was emailled several times saying that they were p
rocessing the order. The sim turned up in less than a week, with a handy user-guide. I popped it into my phone, and topped it up, following the instructions, and I was off. Everything was very simple. However, small problem, I was still being charged for WAP... This was simple enough however, I was still connecting through Vodafone, and I needed to change my WAP number to the Genie one. Basically, my phone was dialling the wrong number. It did tell me how to do this on the Genie website however, so I was fine. COVERAGE Increasingly this isn't an issue anywhere in the UK, although T-Mobile is a bit dodgy round here in Lincolnshire at times. Overall, I was used to never being unable to make a call with Vodafone, and this is still the case. No problems. SUPPORT This is where I have my little moan... I have tried emailing to ask simple questions, however, it has usually taken at least a week for a reply- and this is usually an auto-reply, that ignores your question. For example, I asked if I can port my number to them after starting with a new number, ie, can I buy a sim-card, with the number 07732 5*4***, but 2 months down the line, port my old Vodafone number to it, and change my number back to 07900 5*86**. Complex question, I know, :-) Anyway, the reply, basically said it was free for me to port my number- which isn't at all what I asked! The help on the website is good, but with £1/minute phone support and useless email support, service is an issue. Apparently, emails get forwarded to real people if you put the word 'complaint' in the subject, but I've not tested this tip. Anyway, if you want anything like number porting, or phone upgrades (the ability to get a new phone for free after being on contract for 12 months, through keeping the same provider), I wouldn't recommend Genie. Trying to get sense out of them can be a bi
t like raising the dead... EXTRAS Briefly, it's worth also mentioning, all Genie users get text messages informing them of new email, online web mail also accessible by WAP, text alerts of horoscopes, news etc. and international roaming (the ability to use your phone abroad- although they won't tell me the prices... :-\ ). All services I've used with other operators, and found very useful. Being told by text message when I've got new email is really useful! OVERALL I can't fault Genie's prices, coverage, the number of services on offer and their basic aims. However, their customer support really lets them down, as I always feel that it's invaluable to be able to share your problems with another human being. If you want to save money, you use your mobile a lot, send a lot of texts , and are willing to put up with trying to solve problems yourself, Genie is for you. My bills were £30 or so a month, now all I spend is around £10 on credit every month. Therefore, I'll have saved £240 in a year. Worth having really... That's 150 pints of beer (or probably about 4 in London)... However, if you're not short of cash, and are a medium to low user, a contract with a company such as Orange might prove a less stressful experience.
I have only recently joined Genie using their pre-pay 600 free SMS and 100 free minutes tariff, but so far I am well pleased. The per-minute tariff is 10p peak and 2p off-peak which compares well with the 35p peak, 2p weekends (I think evenings are 10p) I had to pay Cellnet. (I will look for a place to put up information on how to access OneTel's amazing international rates from the mobile.) I cannot imagine sending 600 SMS a month, I send about 5 a day so that would use up 150 which on my previous system (BT Cellnet pay-as-you-go) would have cost £15.00 so even without the free minutes, I am breaking even. You can also send 600 SMS messages a month from their web site and you don't even have to be a subscriber. They allow you a few more characters than DooYoo and don't send ads. I wonder how long that will apply? The web-based SMS service has been off-line a few times recently but you don't find that out until you've tried to send a message which is a bit frustrating, but using a QWERTY keyboard is SO much easier! Like DooYoo, you can't send to non-UK numbers but I have been known to forward such messages through my handset so retaining the QWERTY advantage. One thing was very impressive. I signed up on-line at about 23:00 on a Thursday and the SIM was in my hands on the Saturday (I was keeping my old handset). There is also an 0870 service line. ADDED 9.5.02 Although I have no complaints about the service, what is all this rubbish about "O2". Yet another company squandering resources on "rebranding" - or something. I am thoroughly confused about it all! Addes 29 7 02 O2 is a classic case of "If it ain't broken, don't fix it". I do admit that I cannot fault the service, as a mobile phone provider, O2 works but their infrastructure is abysmally bad. For instance, I was told when I joined that I could have the roaming bar lif
ted after three months. The three months were up on 18th July - would they remove the bar, err, no, not until you have paid the bill. That is by D/D on about 2 Aug - can I have it lifted then? Err, no, not until the payment has cleared - so three months has become the best part of 4 and when the time finally expires, I'll be guess where? On the Continent! But the new O2 web site, that is something else. For the past three weeks or more, I have been totally unable to access my on line account despite this being part of the contract. It keeps rejecting my user name and last night came the last straw, it failed to recognise one of its own numbers! "You do not appear to be an O2 user!" - watch this space, baby. On both topics, I have endlessly emailed them and got an equal number - well, no about 60% - of conflicting answers most of which treat me like a child almost along the lines of move the little pointy thing to My Bill and make a clicky sound with your mouse - well not quite! The upshot is that I shall use my pay-as-you-go SIM card (also O2) on the Continent where it does everything except let me send SMS and I have to pay an invoice I have not seen!! Advice to those about to join O2, DON'T. One area for research is what benefit is there in buying a local p-y-g card in the country you are visiting? I shall try this in Italy and may start a new thread on the topic to collect other views. ADDED 14 October, 2002 My opinion of O2 has been on the slide since it appeared out of nowhere - isn't a Genie supposed to do that, not disappear? Firstly the web site. It is the slowest most unreliable site I know. Part of the deal is on line access ro one's account. For at least two months during the summer I couldn't access mu invoices and had to pay 2 by direct debit without having seen them! I haven't been able to access my usgae reprot for months
which is really infuriating as it means I can't keep tabs on how many of my free minutes I have used at any one time. (Sorry, this is a bit Repetitive, but it really does annoy me) Then a few weeks ago I suddenly found I could no longer send SMS messages. After several phone calls include one to an 09 number (mercifully short) I was told they had changed the number to which SMS messages had to be sent. Nothing on the web site about this, no SMS warnings! How did the rest of the user base get on, I wonder? By the way, I did find that my pay-as-you-go SIM does now allow SMS from the Continent - but they cost 49p each! When you eventually get a reply to email complaints, they just say sorry for ANY inconvenience. If ever I get on Room 101, that is one of my rejects, people who apologise for ANY inconvenience when they shoud be apologising for THE inconvenience!
I don't even know why I'm writing an opinion on Genie, I haven't used the service much. Why? Because I can't! Plain and simple. Here's why. Lured by the siren call of their banner on dooyoo promising 600 free texts a month, cheap calls, free WAP and a free phone, I went in eyes wide open. I ordered a shiny new Sony J-70 because I really have this thing with Nokias and that ridiculous default text alert sound which always seems to be set at about 120db and is only telling the world that you've received yet another visual knob-joke. Anyway, I'd been spending loads too much because the mobile was becoming a bit of a way of life and at least this way I could save a few quid while still using a decent service. It helped that my last phone was on its last legs and both chargers had almost given up the ghost too. Definitely time for a change then. Just over two weeks ago my package arrived, about three days after I ordered following a credit check and a confirmatory email. They aim to deliver between 5pm and 9pm because that's when they say everyone's in. Ah. Mistake. I mainly work late shift and don't get home until 10.30 or even later if I get detained on the way back. First whinge. Give us the option of a timed delivery. I'm fed up with being beholden to courier companies, we're paying for a service - let us say when we can collect or receive. Filled with anticipatory glee, I opened the box up and there's my new phone. All gleaming and lovely. Plus a nice green booklet with pictures of a loving couple on the front sitting on a VW Devon and other people enjoying their Genie enabled lives. How on earth could they have done without it for so long? Nice. Desperately wanting to be part of this new generation of mobile communicants, it was out with the sim card. Yes. Er...this is where I own up to the big mistake. (Stage whisper) "I think I broke it accidentally!" I heard it crack as I g
ently tried to remove it from its holder. I inserted it into the phone, switched it on and lo and behold, the legend "Insert SIM" appeared. "Hmmm. Must be faulty" I mused to myself, "better phone Genie and tell them." 24 hour customer service team on hand to deal with any problems promised much. I called them. No answer. Called them again. Still no answer. Then an answer machine saying that, "due to circumstances beyond our control...late morning next day etc". Went to the website. A message said that due to the adverse weather conditions, no-one was in. So I sent a mail. Which was duly acknowledged. Next day I managed to call someone and report my "faulty sim". No worries, we'll get one in the post. 3 days. That meant Thursday 31st. My old number was due to port on the Thursday so that meant I wouldn't need to contact anyone with the new number. OK. I could live with that - no inconvenience! As luck would have it, I made a trip up country on the Thursday and I was uncontactable and nobody knew where I was. I didn't receive the sim as promised but I gave them the benefit of the doubt - the weather had after all, been appalling. Maybe it would arrive the next day? No chance. It's now almost two weeks since my phone arrived and I still haven't used it. The second time I called them I was told that I ought to have been told 7-10 days instead of 3 days. The third time I called my order was traced. Still not actioned. I remained calm. The fourth time, this morning, I spoke to the same chap as before and he once again checked the status of my order. I couldn't believe that it still had not been sent out. I don't really know how I remained calm, I'm meant to have a cool head in a crisis but when it's difficult to understand the reasons for any kind of difficulty, frustration nearly always claims one's temper. I'm now expecting it on Tuesday, 12th February, full
y three weeks after I first reported it as er...faulty. I have received an email saying that my case would be reviewed by a senior person and I would get an explanation. Doesn't make anything better, I wanted the phone. If there were two weeks in my life when I really needed a mobile it was the last two and I felt very badly let down. It doesn't stop there though. Anyone used Genie to send the odd free text messsage? Up until recently they very generously allowed Genie members (just sign up, no fee) full use of the free message service and a host of other features on the website. This is over. You're now subject to an allowance and the texts carry adverts, so I'm told. I wouldn't know - I haven't received one recently, have I? What's more, some of the adverts are for premium rate services or chatlines and this I find a huge cheek especially as some of the heavier users will be kids. I know the free service has to be funded somehow and I don't object to the odd advert from time to time but this is really beyond the pale. Additionally, once you become a Genie 'phone account holder, the free web site texts come off your monthly mobile allowance of 600 - a real cheek when you consider that the web texts are limited to 115 characters as opposed to 160. Genie are part of BT. I know they've had their problems of late but this doesn't do them any favours. If the major telecomms player in the country can't get it right it leaves the door open for every two-bit opportunist to plough in and hoover up the spoils. When you go with a major company you expect above all else, reliability and continuity of service. You'll probably pay a bit extra for the privilege but maybe you'd expect that. I feel pretty badly treated as well as suckered and I won't let it rest. I'll let you know the outcome in an update. Genies are meant to be magical. They have the ability to change your life should
you want them to do so but like other magical things they can disappoint drastically if you put too much faith in them. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ OK. Here's an update. It's Thursday, 14th February. My card still hasn't arrived. Promised 12th, wasn't it. I called them on Tuesday only to be told that the number I had been using, which I thought got me through to their customer care ("e-care") centre was the wrong one and I ought to be 'phoning a different one. I did. The answer was "You are now being charged 50p per minute" to which my reply wasn't too pretty. I emailed them instead. Another problem. I wanted to send a nice long email explaining why I wasn't too happy but they limit your mails to 1205 characters or some ridiculous number. They don't even have a general email address you can send to. I got an almost instant reply though and a personalised one too mentioning the problem which would indicate that someone had actually read it. They said that my complaint was to be passed on to one their senior ecare advisors. I haven't heard from them yet. Or had a reply from an earlier mail. I called them again today on that old number; no problem but help me, I swore. Not like me at all. I've been promised a full and frank investigation now but goodness knows when that will be. And it transpires that three cards have been ordered so far. Four if you count the original. So where the */!@! is mine? I'll let you know. Oh yes, I still had 574 free texts left for this month and today being whatever, someone was going to cop for a major portion of those. Thanks, genie. Thanks a bunch for really spoiling my day. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Second update. I got the card! Arrived on the 15th. The phone works now and normal service has been resumed. However, I had what amounted to a pretty unsatisfactory reply to one of the emails and I will be followin
g my complaint up. Sorry chaps, "sorry " just isn't good enough. Just to compound things, their sms service gave up the ghost 36 hours ago. Pity if you had sent an important text say. I could receive but not send although the problem did seem to be with the One-to One service. Pretty bad introduction to a service which promised to revolutionise my life.They are going to have to really impress to regain my faith in them. If and when they do, I will attempt to use the service to its full capabilities and change the op accordingly.
I've always been a fan of BT Cellnet, so when I found out that this was the company behind Genie, I thought very seriously about opting for there service. I finaly put my money where my mouth was this christmas, and ordered there £20 contract off peak scheme, this gave me 50 minutes of off peak calls to Genie, BT cellnet and land lines (Ideal for calling my friend at university!) 600 free texts, and unlimited WAP. The phone took 2 days to come, which was very fast, and was well packaged. (the phone I ordered was the Nokia 3330) the litrature that came with the order was pretty comprehensive, and included everything I needed to know. I set up the phone pretty fast using the 'Get to know your phone' booklet which came with the phone, and was soon making calls and texts. I was very aprehensive at first with the call costs, but at 2p a minute off peak to land lines and BT Cellnet phones, you can't really go wrong. I got my phone bill in at the begining of this month, and the calls came to the grand total of £2.43, so I was very happy, expecualy considering it felt I used the phone for absoloutly ages! The only bad points I've had so far is the customer service, one of my emails to the Genie service centre has gone unanswered (although I do note from the site that the email system is experiencing problems) and the only phone contact you have with them is by premium rate numbers. If you use the mobile alot, and spend alot of time calling other BT Cellnet mobiles, then the £20 tarrif is ideal, expecialy considering the phone is free! On the website it says 'reasonable personal use' fo the WAP, but after alot of research, you can use WAP as much as you desire, without fear of getting booted. The only problem is text messages, because these actualy cost Genie money. I'm very satisfied with my Genie mobile, and wouldn't be without it now! If your thinking a
bout it.. go for it!
I was sick of BT Cellnet, the 10p a time i wanted to text, and god knows how many stupidly short calls i used to make! now i heard of genie through a friend, seeing as though i was already on BT cellnet, a requirement of genie, i was eligable! now i have the freedom to text who i want as often as i want for free! and i have a tenner a month to spend on calls! the only drawback is having to find a tenner a month, but to be honestk thats not bad at all really, If you can, take advantage of this amazing offer, you can't lose!
After having my last mobile phone stolen, i was reluctant to pay the initial outlay required for a new pay as you go phone. A friend recommended Genie to me and I visited their website which I found to be very informative. On making the decision to enter into a contract with Genie (they do offer a pay as you go option, but this was not for me). I made my choice of a wide range of phones (my Nokia 3330 was free of charge) and placed my order. Within 24 hours i had received an e-mail stating that I had passed the credit check and that my phone was in the process of being prepared for dispatch. The day after that I received a further e-mail stating my new phone number. I received the phone itself within a week. Genie's contract offer a good deal as it includes free minutes (a choice of 50 minutes off-peak each day or 100 minutes anytime per month), 600 free text messages each month and free WAP use all for £20. I have found WAP quite fascinating as I had never used WAP before. Genie also bill you online which measn you cannot lose your bill (which i often do). Genie operate on the BT Cellnet network and therefore the coverage is excellent. On the whole I have found Genie to provide an excellent service at a low cost. I would encourage anyone out there who is thinking of chaging their phone to give them a try.