Galaxy 4 wristwatch phone contract
peterjadams
Enthusiast - Level 2

An elderly, low income, disabled neighbor who lives alone switched to Verizon 18 months ago because he wanted to use a Samsung Galaxy wristwatch phone for emergencies (i.e., if he fell or suffered a serious illness that required assistance). He brought his cell phone and wristwatch phone to Verizon and asked to have Verizon cell service to replace his T-Mobile cell service. His Galaxy wristwatch phone was not working consistently and he hoped Verizon's "simultaneous ring" feature would result in reliable cell service with his wristwatch phone. The neighborhood Verizon franchise store offered to upgrade his two year old Galaxy 3 wristwatch phone to a new Galaxy 4 wristwatch phone to obtain greater reliability, and offered a $180 trade-in allowance for the Galaxy 3 toward a new Galaxy 4 that would cost $355.  My neighbor accepted this offer, although the contract he signed provides a complicated billing arrangement that makes the sales price of the Galaxy 4 phone $455 if my neighbor stops using this wristwatch phone in less than  36 months. The contract has many of the hallmarks of predatory lending, such as not disclosing the effective interest rate. Now, my neighbor must give up the Galaxy 4 wristwatch phone, and obtain a medical alert device, because his Galaxy 4 repeatedly but unpredictably ceases to function, such as during a trip to the ER when he could not make a call on the wristwatch phone. When he contacted Verizon to cancel the $10 per month cell service fee for the Galaxy 4 wristwatch phone he was advised that he would be charged $226.78 for the remaining monthly payments toward the $455 cost of the Galaxy 4 wristwatch phone. The Verizon representative offered to try to fix the problem, but the connectivity problem had been fixed many times in the last 18 months by the Verizon franchise and Verizon's online service. The Verizon contract may be enforceable, but has anyone heard of Verizon publicly defending this predatory business practice?

0 Likes
6 Replies
Anonymous
Not applicable

The federal trade commission handles these kind of complaints they’ve investigated Verizon once before and lost a 100 million dollar lawsuit.  Verizon had these customer service reps who know it’s  theft  and fraud they ignore you keep telling you the refund is coming to get you to stay quiet, but i promise you they won’t resolve your issues they stole massive amounts of money from me for devices i never used they were returned  im still paying all the fancy upgrade fees.  Ima be the one laughing when they go bankrupt when the feds come for them 

0 Likes
peterjadams
Enthusiast - Level 2

I filed a Americans with Disabilities Act complaint with the Pennsylvania Attorney General's office after obtaining the injured party's consent and after Verizon would not acknowledge it had inappropriately marketed Samsung Galaxy watch phones to elderly and disabled people as medical alert devices -- despite lots of evidence that Samsung publicly disclosed instability problems with Galaxy watch phones (e.g., numerous updates by Samsung explicitly to address stability issues) and that Verizon knew about these instability problems. Perhaps Samsung Galaxy watch phones are now suitable as medical alert devices, but they were not in 2022 and the first half of 2023. 

0 Likes
peterjadams
Enthusiast - Level 2

I posted on the Verizon Community about a problem a disabled, elderly, low income neighbor had trying to terminate his Verizon cellular service on the Samsung Galaxy 4 watch without being charged a huge fee by Verizon (i.e., making him pay Verizon substantially more than twice the cost of a new Samsung Galaxy 4 watch). A Verizon representative posted that Verizon would look into this situation but I have not heard further nor has my neighbor.

My neighbor purchased the Galaxy 4 watch from Verizon 18 months ago when he switched to Verizon for cellular service for his cell phone and for his cellular watch. He intended to use the cellular service on the watch phone if he fell or otherwise had an emergency and could not access his cell phone. However, the new Galaxy 4 watch phone repeatedly ceased synchronizing with his Android phone and repeatedly ceased working as a standalone device for making cellular calls during emergencies. The local Verizon store where he purchased the cellular watch and cell service plans repeatedly restored cellular service to his watch phone. However, within a few weeks after each "fix," the watch phone failed.

From scanning the "Samsung Community" webpage, it seems some cellular carriers configure Samsung watch phones to require updates over W-Fi, and my neighbor does not have WiFi in his home. Does anyone know if Verizon is one of the carriers that does not support updates to Samsung Galaxy 4 watch phones using the watch's cellular service? Alternatively, the Verizon store may simply have been following Verizon policy to configure watch phones to obtain updates over WiFi rather than using the cellular service of the watch.

If you have information about this please post it here as a reply. Also, please provide a reference because it appears I will need to go to court to stop Verizon from charging my neighbor an additional $228 charge for ceasing use of the watch phone after only 18 months of Verizon service , in addition to the $180 he paid for cellular service for this watch during the 18 months, plus $90 he paid Verizon for the Galaxy 4 and $180 from trading in his Samsung Galaxy 3 when he switched to Verizon.     

0 Likes
vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

We're sorry to hear that your neighbor is having problems cancelling his watch line. We'd be happy to take a look at the situation and help them find a solution. We're going to send you a Private Note so we can gather more information.

~Jesse

0 Likes
vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

I’m saddened your neighbor has been having trouble. We’ve sent a Private Note, so we can get a few more details.

-John

0 Likes
vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

Thank you for bringing this to our attention. Verizon Wireless works with transparency and provides clear disclosures at the time of the purchase. We are here to help and find the most suitable option for our valued customer. If you are an authorized user, give us the opportunity to review in detail. Please send us a Private Note, so we can get started. 

~Maria

0 Likes