Mystery Caller: Mobiles for the elderly

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It’s Mystery Caller’s grandad’s 75th birthday, and he needs a mobile that’s easy to use, read and understand. The budget’s pretty flexible too. What can the networks suggest?

6: Orange

“It’s got a big screen and big buttons so it’s easier to use. Do you remember
those old house phones that had big buttons? Well it’s like one of those”

Manner – 2/5
Understanding – 2/5
Knowledge – 2/5
Helpfulness – 2/5
Clarity – 2/5
Overall – 2/5
Total – 12/30

5: Three

“We don’t have the best selection of prepay handsets.” An honest reply, but perhaps not
the greatest thing to hear as a customer calling up for some retail advice

Manner – 3/5
Understanding – 2/5
Knowledge – 2/5
Helpfulness – 2/5
Clarity – 2/5
Overall – 2/5
Total – 13/30

4: O2

“I would look to get a Nokia if I was you.” What about the poor little LG being championed a moment ago?

Manner – 4/5
Understanding – 3/5
Knowledge – 2/5
Helpfulness – 2/5
Clarity – 2/5
Overall – 3/5
Total – 16/30

=1 Virgin Mobile

On this evidence, Chris was obviously tuned into how features translate to cost, and how cost fits into a successful sales pitch

Manner – 4/5
Understanding – 3/5
Knowledge – 2/5
Helpfulness – 3/5
Clarity – 3/5
Overall – 3/5
Total 18/30

=1: Vodafone

She even suggested the Nokia C3, which Sam described as “cracking little phone”, saying it looks like a BlackBerry with a full QWERTY keyboard

Manner – 3/5
Understanding –3/5
Knowledge – 2/5
Helpfulness – 4/5
Clarity – 3/5
Overall – 3/5
Total – 18/30

=1: T-Mobile

“My mum’s the same with phones, although she’s only 40. Doesn’t want anything complicated, just simple to use,” he said

Manner – 4/5
Understanding – 3/5
Knowledge – 2/5
Helpfulness – 3/5
Clarity – 3/5
Overall – 3/5
Total – 18/30

Summary

No network put in a standout performance. Virgin’s Chris, Vodafone’s Sam and T-Mobile’s Martin all gave pretty standard responses without drilling too deep.

Their scores were predominantly higher because they had a much better manner during the call, and were able to get to grips with the enquiry pretty quickly. Sam went out of her way to find examples, albeit in a haphazard way, while Chris put in a slick sales effort. What Three’s Gavin gave in honesty he lost out on with missing details, as with Nick at O2, who contradicted himself and undermined his own case. As for the unnamed CSA at Orange, she was frankly rude and missed an opportunity to push a handset that was tailor-made for what I was looking for.

Full review in Mobile News issue 471 August 30, 2010).

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