A Moment in My Life – Monday, July 25, 2022
Jeannie Yee Davis
During the past few months, I took a hiatus from writing to deal with life. As a solo act, it won’t get done if I don’t do something. This realization keeps me on my toes and juggling tasks by priority. If you’re not broke, take a number and get into the long line. I won’t deal with you until your number is up. One of the tasks that became a high priority was my dire need to replace my modem. At five years of age, which was ancient by technology standards, I knew I needed to replace it one day but dreaded it. I remember the headache it was the last time we replaced it. We previously bought a modem and Mark, who knew what he was doing, installed it for us but not without problems. With Mark gone, I wasn’t so confident that I could do it myself.
Long story short, after a friend and an Apple phone tech, said they rented the modem from their internet provider, I decided to follow their lead. After all, if a tech guy thought it was a good idea, who am I to argue?
While placing the modem phone order with Xfinity, I locked down a promotional deal for their highest internet speed at $17 less than what I was paying for their lowest speed. I did a happy dance with that savings. The rep also introduced their mobile service, reducing my internet total bill by another $30 if I bundled my mobile service with them. The timing was impeccable as I needed to upgrade my antiquated iPhone 6 since it had already stopped getting system updates a year ago. I put off upgrading my phone to avoid having to dish out the porky price that comes with the purchase. Being a red-headed stepchild with AT&T’s go phone division, I had no clout, but I had excellent phone reception that I could always count on. Nevertheless, except for needing a new phone, I had no complaints with my go phone plan. It served my needs.
Since Xfinity was so customer-focused on pleasing me, I decided to give AT&T a call and see what they could (or would) offer to get me to stay with them. Maybe I shouldn’t have had high hopes before making the call because my excitement shriveled with every word from the AT&T rep, who was disinterested in whether I stayed or left.
My options for staying with AT&T were slim. If I want a new iPhone, I can have one for the total price upfront. If I preferred an installment plan, I needed to switch to their post pay service side; however, they would replace my current cell phone number with a new one in the switch. I refused to surrender my cell phone number six years ago, so why would I do that now? So much for that option. Knowing that AT&T’s strong reception is the only thing they had going for them, I asked what would happen if I left AT&T for another provider and later decided to come back to the AT&T go phone plan, and she said I could return but would get a new phone number. What is it with the new number thing? I don’t get it. Years back, I heard that they were running out of phone numbers. Well, here’s the solution—stop switching numbers. Maybe that would help. Alas, AT&T convinced me to leave that day.
Customer service-wise, Xfinity, has everything going for them, but reception-wise, AT&T they are not. Yes, I got my beautiful purple iPhone 12, just like I ordered it with my existing number, and I’ll own it in two years. I couldn’t be happier. Well, I could be more pleased if Xfinity’s reception matched AT&T’s. Xfinity is on the Verizon network, and now most of the people I talk on the phone with are on the same network; however, for those not, it is a challenge to get good audio reception on the call. Then there’s the Bluetooth reception between my phone and the car sound system that frustrates me. I always listen to music from Amazon Music or YouTube, which was never a problem. I’m still waiting for the reception to acclimate, or maybe it’s wishful thinking. In the meantime, it is annoying that every time and I mean every single time, I turn on the engine, the music pulsates or gurgles through a song before it smoothens out. I’m unsure if it would eventually smoothen out on its own since I impatiently help it along by turning the music off and on and off and on until the song smoothens out. I tell you, this challenge is an annoying pain in the butt. AT&T, I miss you because you never gave me any problems before, but you left me no choice since I needed a new phone but refused to pay for it upfront, and you weren’t accommodating.
Sadly, I am locked in with Xfinity for two years until I pay for my phone and fulfill the promotional deal. For now, it is what it is, and this is home. In any event, AT&T won’t ever be home again unless they change their rules and allow me to retain my phone number when I return. Otherwise, like The Shangri-Las’ song, “I can never go home anymore. And that’s called sad.”