IMPDA’s cashback cock-up

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His post highlighted the request made by the IMPDA on behalf of its members to all networks regarding the cashback situation and calling for an all out ban on cashback offers before Ofcom get involved.

Well this request certainly stirred things up. A few dealers were annoyed such a blanket request was made when they had not been consulted or even knew anything about it. It transpires that an email sent out to IMPDA members advising them of its intentions never made it passed the email servers, so no-one actually received any such notification. Yet, despite no responses, the request was made anyway.

A few dealers even commented on the fact they had no objections to Ofcom getting involved in the whole dodgy cashback scenario; indeed, they more than welcomed such an investigation, saying it would be good for all involved. But the general consensus was against the letter/request being sent at all on behalf of dealers.

Polls have cropped up on all sorts of websites asking if dealers want a total ban on cashback, including my own, the IMPDA’s and Mobile News’ site. The results are a mixed bag to say the least, but the one sure-fire conclusion is that a blanket ‘yes’ vote is out of the question. In addition, the whole debate seems to be creating some bad blood; hardly the desired effect.

The networks themselves are working hard to try and address the problems behind cashback by either culling their dealer base or setting stringent guidelines on what can and can’t be offered. But it does seem strange that, with all the negative reactions and publicity regarding cash backs, the likes of E2Save (to name but one) are still offering absolutely unbelievable deals online.

The magic modem

Last week I decided to connect a 3 USB data modem for myself, as I had a customer enquiring about 3’s new data tariffs and wanted to be able to demonstrate fully such things as ease of use.

Inside the box were a couple of cables, a software disc for Mac, the modem, the SIM and a very brief instruction booklet. Not one to read the instructions, I was a little confused as to why there was no software disc for Windows. I thought, “If I just connect this to my laptop now, Windows will install the drivers for the unit, but what about the software?”

Being sure there should be a Windows disc, I asked my supplier and they confirmed there was only one software disc supplied. There was nothing else for it – I had to read the instruction manual.

The manual simply said plug the unit into the laptop to install the software, so I did. Sure enough, Windows installed drivers for the USB modem, but then continued to install software too – the modem installed its own software.

This is how it should always be; the process was refreshingly simple for a change. If I’d trusted (or even read) the manual in the first place, I would have been up and running in no time at all.

Couple the ease of installation with the great value data package and 3 are surely onto a winner with this product. A little more profit in the deal would be nice though!

Love your number?

Until recently dealers have been unable to connect Orange customers via Enable that wanted to keep their old Orange prepay numbers. Instead, it was done via an team off-line and was known internally as the NT3 process.

But a while back we noticed a new input field on Enable entitled ‘love your number’ – the idea being you can enter a customer’s Orange prepay number into Enable to complete the process. We used this for the first time the other day and sent the customer on their merry way.

But the following day the customer came back in, as the prepay number hadn’t transferred. We called Orange customer services as the customer, and were rather rudely told that, as the customer had not bought the phone direct, the number couldn’t be transferred.

So we came onto the phone as the dealer, and their attitude changed. They now stated that as we (the dealer) had not informed them the customer wished to bring their number over, it was now too late to do so. We informed the operator that we did tell Orange, as the prepay number was put into Enable under ‘love your number’. The operator then simply shirked saying, “Call Enable.”

Another example of good customer support and Orange representatives blaming the dealer for anything that goes wrong. As a side note, the prepay number actually transferred later that day, without the assistance of customer services.

 

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