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Jetpack overages when all connecting devices are off
kterra
Member

I have been having recurrent issues with my 4G jetpack using data when all devices that are able to connect to it are shut off.  Today spent over 2 hours trying to get my issue resolved through tech support and costumer service.  I have been trouble with this device ongoing and feel the only resolution is to remove this device from my service and have the early termination fee waived. 

Background - I have had the device for a little over a year.  I live on 12 acres with no other houses in range for the jetpack.  I have a family of 4 and there are up to 6 devices that could connect to the jetpack.  My daughters are aware that I watch the data like a hawk and must ask before streaming anything - music, youtube etc. as this can be forbidden when data gets low at the end of the month.

There have been at least 3 occasions where the data accrued could not have occurred in a way that makes sense that I can pinpoint with certainty.  The first event was 10GB of data accruing on the jetpack in July of 2013 when all the devices were with us on a trip 8 hours from our home.  Bill Cassel (the other user on my plan) called and spent several hours on the phone - he ultimately talked with a tech investigated the incident - he stated that had seen similar things happen and reported that data accrual could be inaccurate at times and the overage was reversed.

There have been many other occasions where data jumped out of proportion to apparent usage and unfortunately when my girls are home they get blamed - and I suspect now this was in error…as in another instance we didn't use our sleeping devices but watched that data was still being charged to the account.

This last occurrence is the straw that has broken my back - again we visited my sister for the 4th of july weekend 8 hours away and left our home at 8 am on July 3 with all the devices left at home asleep - the jetpack was there.  All people with a device were with us an well out of distance of the jetpack…8 hours away.  I have researched that in sleep mode our computers shouldn't pull data.  Our house is far enough from any other people that someone hacking in seems extremely remote (feel free to google map the address - it is quite remote).  During our time away the jetpack, alone and unused, racked up over a GB of use each day of our absence July 3-July7…this is more use that the device averages when all devices are in the house and on.

Over the last 13 months, Bill and I have spent approximately 6 hours on the phone trying to address the issue with customer service.  We have had the device replaced, changed the password and paid several small overages that didn't seem worth the hours dealing with customer service to have rectified.  On the 17th of July I spoke with a total of 12 representatives, was transferred to 6 supervisors (and dropped form 4 of these supervisor connections with only one callback).  I am currently waiting for a supervisors supervisor to call me back within 48 hours…we shall see what happens…  I have been told by tech support today that what I describe should not be happening, I have also been told by non-tech support that it is normal to have data use if the jetpack is on even if all devices that use it are off??? and that no matter what there is no way the termination fee can be waived.  I am horrified by the lack of attention to this problem that appears to amount to stealing...not to mention the horrific customer service.

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Re: Jetpack overages when all connecting devices are off
John_Getzke
Leader
Leader

If your Jetpack is powered on then you are going to be liable for any data usage that occurs.  It doesn't matter if the usage was intentional or not.  The best practice while investigating a data usage/overage situation is to power down your Jetpack when you are done using it.  That is the only way you can be sure that your sleeping devices are not actually communicating and pulling updates.  Situations like this are often why I do not suggest Jetpacks as a primary internet connection from home.  Jetpacks are designed to be temporary and mobile internet connections best suited for a traveling business man or someone frequently on the move.

It sounds like you have done everything that VZW can normally do in an overage situation.  You had your first overage wiped, had the device swapped out and changed passwords (although that shouldn't matter from your description).  The only loose end you haven't tended to is leaving the Jetpack powered on when not in use.  That or switching to a different Jetpack model or 4G LTE device (ex. USB modem+router or 4G LTE router) to see if they behave any better.

My suggestion would be to terminate considering the amount of time and money you have already invested in this situation.  Give another service provider a chance and see if the performance is any better.  If you spend more time troubleshooting it should be on how to handle the termination fee (which is pro-rated). VZW will still be here if you decide to return down the road, perhaps things will be better.

Re: Jetpack overages when all connecting devices are off
Montanaann
Novice

This appears to be a nationwide overbilling issue.  The more I research it, the clearer it becomes that consumers need a provider who can verify that we get what we pay for. Right now, VZW has free rein to charge us what suits their current revenue needs.

Re: Jetpack overages when all connecting devices are off
Montanaann
Novice

The tech told me that, even if the unit is powered off, it must also be unplugged or there may be data flowing.  Ridiculous!

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Re: Jetpack overages when all connecting devices are off
John_Getzke
Leader
Leader

No, that is incorrect.  AJetpack cannot operate or consume data while powered off.  There is no need to unplug anything to stop the data flow, just power it down.

Perhaps he was being overcautious and assuming that some folks get confused about when the jetpack is in sleep mode vs. being powered off?

The only other explanation for overages when a Jetpack is turned off is delayed billing.  This should only apply to those who are in an extended service area.  Since the data from an extended service area is on a delay it will always lag behind when the actual data usage occurred.  In some cases it only lags an hour while in others it can be several hours behind.  All VZW can do is process the billing as it is handed to them from the tower owners in that area.  When you are in normal VZW full service areas this should not be an issue.