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A great O2 offer based on lapsed deal terms

Our correspondent writes ...

On 17th January 2008, O2 rang and offered me a great deal:

  1. a Motorola Razr V8 handset
  2. 2000 O2 to O2 minutes
  3. 600 cross-network minutes
  4. 50 texts a month

All this for 25 - plus I would get the first 2 months free.

So I agreed. The phone duly arrived and I excitedly opened the package, spent time transferring all my details from my existing mobile and put lots of music on it. This took a while but I was also contacting O2 to find out when I would get a signal. I was getting "unregistered Sim" whenever I turned the phone on.

They reckoned they had my phone mixed up with someone else's and were going to transfer his/her account and number to my phone on 28th January. I pointed out that I was not transferring my number, and that the number they gave me was not mine. I phoned it and left a message on the Vodafone answering service to tell them to sort O2 out, as they were mixing their number up with mine.

Today, I got a call to tell me my new number. I asked, "do I get the 2600 free minutes in the first 2 free months?" That's when they told me the deal I was supposedly set up for was completely different to the one they had offered. It was nowhere near as good, and was not one I would have agreed to in any circumstances. Apparently, the one I had been offered was "an old deal that wasn't offered any more".

So I regretfully had to inform them I would be returning the phone and contacting Trading Standards, as the contract I had agreed to was not being fulfilled.

They gave me the telephone number of their accounts department and the account number relating to the contract they were trying to fob me off with.

What makes this much worse is that if I had not asked the question, I would not have found out I had been ripped off until I was past the fourteen day limit for rescinding the contract. I wonder how many other people have been conned into signing up for a contract based on a pack of lies?

After I had rung Trading Standards and informed them of the situation, I rang O2 on the accounts number and notified them that I would be returning the phone.

I have now spent half an hour removing all the stuff I put on the phone, packing it up and so on. I was very pleased with the phone, and the deal, but I am not going to be fobbed off with a deal which offers a tenth of what was agreed just because the phone is beautiful.

Editorial Comment:

Although we get so many complaints about Vodafone that we can no longer publish them all, this is the first for O2. But it's clear that they have similarly devious sales tactics and we wonder if there is any honesty among mobile phone service providers.

With the government's help, they blot the landscape with their unsightly masts, not caring if the suspected dangers might affect our children, and they go to great lengths to suppress any evidence that using mobile phones puts us all at risk.

But the false sales promises, and total lack of satisfactory after-sales services, seem to be common to all the service providers and yet they do nothing to mend their ways.

We should perhaps resist the temptations of all-singing, all-dancing new features and use mobiles only for basic necessary communications. I use mine so rarely I actually wonder why I bother at all. Unfortunately, I see many other people who apparently can't survive unless they are constantly speaking on their mobiles. I suspect they are lost causes and that surgical amputation will be the only way to separate them from their phones.

Visitors' Comments

TF, Bedfordshire writes:

Carphone Warehouse had me on a 18 month contract with O2. It ran out today. The trouble is the number of sales calls you get as your near the end of the contract. Different companies ring and they have all your detail which are supposed to be confidential. All the companies who called me said Carphone Warehouse and O2 had supplied the details. O2 denied this but Carphone Warehouse admitted it, blatantly saying, "We cannot protect customers detail 100% and if the details are passed, it's for the customer's benefit to aid their purchase of a new phone / tariff."
My question was then: "How do you know I need a new phone? I may not want one."

"Many men stumble across the truth ... but most manage to pick themselves up and continue as if nothing had happened."

Winston S Churchill

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