I Really wanted this entry to be my “Why I divorced Apple” story, but this will suffice until I get around to that one. I also could have titled this “Customer Service Call” but read on and you’ll understand the title.
I recently changed phones. Not carriers just phones. When Google decided to make a phone, and teamed up with HTC™ to make the Nexus One, I jumped in feet first. For close to two years I absolutely loved my Nexus, until one day my 21 year old walks in with his Sidekick 4G. Primarily unimpressed, I played around with his phone, comparing functions side by side with the Nexus, and after a wireless tether I was sold.
The Sidekick 4G is a solid unit. My son and I agree that if this unit ran an OS greater than it’s Froyo stock OS, it would would be a steep Android offering. After having various problems: screen freezes, force quits, etc., I called T-Mobile customer service and go some Insider Info:
Having experienced a hard reboot on this unit previously, I informed Operator #1 that I was aware my APN settings had to be redone. However, I communicated, I wanted to ask a few questions. Did she have any idea when the Sidekick 4G would get at least a Gingerbread update? Because, I cited, with an up to date OS, this phone would really be a contender. She began by saying “Android just makes me hungry, all this Gingerbread and Ice Cream Sandwich, just makes me hungry!” HUH?
She proceeded to say that she could see in her records that Samsung and T-Mobile came to some sort of an agreement to TALK about updates on 11/2. She also explained that the issues (problems) I had with my unit were “known issues.” I asked if these “known issues” were listed anywhere in Cyberspace? Her answer was no. I asked if I could be emailed a statement stating the “known issues”, my close friends are developers, and who knows? Maybe they could possibly find a work-around. Her answer was no. I say “well is there a supervisor I may be able to talk to that might give me a go-ahead on an email stating the “known issues”? Her answer was no, this is Insider Info.
She’d now have to switch me over to another department to to restore the APN settings on my phone. Her final advice was that if I basically Stayed Stock (NOT gonna work for a hacker with a rooted phone, hint-hint), and use my task manager, Blah…Blah…Blah…that’s the best i could do. Wow. She offered me a “free trial” of voicemail to text, (which I made sure I can cancel on day 29 of my 30 day trial) which Google Voice already gives me free of charge.
So I presume, because this department would be handling the actual tech work, they’d be at least a smidgen more informed about an OS update. So, of course I inquired. Operator #2 let me know I WOULD be receiving an update (although she didn’t know when), but by no means a new OS. She pouted “we (t-mobile) only provide you phone service, the update business is Google’s responsibility.” From where she stood, Google refuses to issue an entirely new OS before fixing an old faulty one. I guess I should be……..happy? She “understood my my plight” and “knew how frustrating it was”, all of which I pondered was tied to her “I see you are quite a phone connoisseur, which unit are we talking about?” comment as she sifted through my records to show my evolution from Blackberry-to-Nexus One-to-now a second Sidekick 4G.
I accepted the pun, and was actually impressed by an immediate call-back after the call dropped during our conversation. T-Mobile DOES have good customer service, just some Insider Info that they can’t repeat other than speaking to a paying customer on a secured line. (Here is where I insert using Google Voice to record calls is a godsend).
Throughout this journey, I’ve learned that companies need creative minds to make sense of it all. Operator #1’s Samsung-to-T-Mobile vs operator #2’s T-Mobile-to-Google, says a great deal about what needs to happen. Only through usage can any of these three deliver a superior product. Touchwiz™ technology withstanding, the hardware for the Sidekick 4G holds up, and, could be a superior device with a decent system update. That would increase sales of this unit, no-brainer. But the absence of a creative partner is evident, giving the Sidekick 4G a slim chance of being a major Android competitor. The Nexus Prime is on its way, EVO’s are getting the Ice Cream Sandwich OS, and the Motorola Atrix still rocks.
But NEWSFLASH to the three companies in this triangle……..you need to hire one of us.