I saw AT&T was offering a deal when you buy the Nexus 6 you get $50 off the Moto 360 smart watch. Cool. So I decided to pull the trigger.
Around noon on Friday I logged in to my AT&T account, put the items in my cart with the appropriate check boxes and options and … no discount. No promotion code. No joy.
Clicked the “chat now” and got “Christopher B.” who walked me through the same steps. Same results. He tried it with a phantom order and it worked for him, so after trying to clear caches and use different browsers, he transferred the chat to a supervisor named Nashaat. We did the same drill with the same failed outcome. Here’s were it gets fun (like root canal). He told me he couldn’t help so I had to call customer support. You know … press 1 for this, 3 for that 7 for the other thing and wait on hold for 20 minutes while the recording assures you that your call is important to them.
Call #1. Pretty much a spoken version of my chat session. After 15 minutes, I get a number for premier customer support.
Call #2. Press 1,3,7,wait, etc. Explain the problem for the 4th time. The rep tried logging into my account for me and kept saying “that’s weird”. After the 5th “weird” she give me a number for web ordering as she doesn’t have access to the web orders, and this is a web only deal.
Call #3. Pound 1,3 … yeah, you get it.
Me: 5th explanation, still won’t work.
Rep: I see you’re in Reading … I’m in Bethlehem. (two towns in PA about 50 miles apart)
Rep: Did you get snow last night? I was so shocked when I left work and saw it coming down.
Me: yeah, we got some snow, too.
Rep: It’s too early for snow … it’s not even Thanksgiving yet. Here’s a number for tech support since it’s a technical issue with the web.
Call #4. Take Prozac while pressing 1,3, SEVENGOSHDARNIT! … get “Jeffry” who sounded more like Rajesh Kuthrapali from The Big Bang Theory. I explain this time not only the problem with the order but the problem with everyone passing the buck.
Jeffry: I’m sorry for your poorly experience with AT&T. I will help you with the problem you are having. Please explain your problem.
Me: Sure, as soon as I clean up the blood that’s dripping from my ears. (Okay, not really, but i should have).
Jeffry: I’m sorry, May I place you on hold while I look into that for you?
Me: Sure. (what else am I going to say?) *Tap my fingers and listen to the muzak*
Jeffry: I’m sorry, I do not see that promotion listed under deals. Where did you see it?
Me: Go to order phones. Click on Nexus 6 pre-order and scroll down below the recommended accessories (the first one being the Moto 360) and look for the big blue ball that says “Special Offer”.
Jeffry: Yes, I see it now …I’m sorry but may I place you on hold while ….
Me: Sure … *surf over to WebMD to research the symptoms of a stroke.*
Jeffry: I’m sorry this is taking so long. I will call you back. I Promise … oh and I’m sorry.
Jeffry calls back in 15 minutes.
Jeffry: I see the confusion. This deal is for the Moto X, not the Nexus 6.
Me: But, I saw the deal on the Nexus six page. (reading right from the website) “Save $50 on the Moto 360 when you purchase the Nexus 6.”
Jeffry: Yes I see it. I’m sorry. May I call you back? I’m sorry.
It is now 4:30 in the afternoon. Jeffry calls back 10 minutes later.
Jeffry: I’m sorry. We have escalated this to our development team and someone will call you back in 24 to 48 hours. I’m sorry.
Me: And when you say 24 to 48 hours, you guys don’t work weekends so we are looking at …Tuesday?
Jeffry: Yes, you will be called back by the end of the day on Tuesday. I Promise. I’m sorry.
And that ended 5 wasted hours of 2 chat sessions and 4 phone calls … and still no joy.
But wait, that’s not the end!
So my 40 minute commute turns into two hours due to an accident in a construction zone and the DOWJONES industrial average shoots up 100 points from a sudden surge in the pharmaceuticals markets. High demand for Prozac, you see.
In an attempt to vent just a small bit of frustration before the lid completely comes off, I go to the AT&T contact page. Hmmm, no email, only chat, Twitter and FaceBook. Fine, I tweet to @ATTCares (ironically) “I cannot begin to express my frustration when trying to place an online order. It shouldn’t take 5 hours and 6 reps.”
A few seconds later I get a reply. “Hi, I’m sorry for your wait and frustration. Can I help with your order? Follow/DM me the details.” So, I send a message that I doubt they can help, but I’ll give it another shot. I send them my phone number.
So, after briefly explaining the problem yet again, a fine young rep says “That’s our problem, not yours. How about you place the order without the discount showing and I’ll credit the $50 back to your account?”
Which is exactly what I did. And within 20 minutes, the credit shows up in my account.