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Verizon values smartphone customers more than basic phone customers
fairfaxguy
Newbie

So, I have been a customer of Verizon Wireless for around 10 years.   I started off with a basic flip phone, and then upgraded to a blackberry smartphone a few years ago.   Since my job would not pay for it anymore I downgraded back to a basic flip phone again.   I am in the market to upgrade to an iPhone (not under contract), but I don't like what I am hearing about the new tiered data plans. 

Since I currently have the basic flip phone, and did not have a smartphone unlimited data plan in July 2011, Verizon will force me to sign up for one of their tiered data plans.  This brings me three questions.

1)  Is Verizon Wireless treating me the same as a new customer? 

2)  Does Verizon Wireless value their existing smartphone customers (pre-July 2011) more than me as a long time basic customer that has had a smartphone in the past?

3)  What does Verizon Wireless want to offer me to convince me to stay?  Do they care?

I am seriously considering jumping ship and going to AT&T if this is the way Verizon is going to treat me.  Knowing there are other customers being treated differently that may not have been as loyal as I have to Verizon is very frustrating.  The AT&T iphone will let me talk and surf at the same time, maybe that is a good idea. Am I wrong or in my scenario would you do the same thing? 

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Verizon values smartphone customers more than basic phone customers
rcschnoor
Super User
Super User

1 - yes, but they are also treating you like any 10 yr customer that has never had a smartphone, or ANY customer who is switching from a basic phone to a smartphone.

2 - Actually, they probably value you more, since you have the possibility to generate more revenue for them. It is just common for carriers to not change the price of a feature that customers have active on their account when they increase/change their pricing structure.

3 - A better network and service than the other providers can give you.

Actually it is always a good idea to compare value/service that the other providers can give you. If you can get a better service for the same price, it would be silly to stay.

Re: Verizon values smartphone customers more than basic phone customers
Wildman
Super User
Super User

Had to slap all three answers with a positive because in combination every angle of the question has been answered in my opinion..

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Re: Verizon values smartphone customers more than basic phone customers
kaebfly
Champion

I won't repeat the obvious because it has been said so well already, but I will point out a few things. If you switch to AT&T you still won't receive unlimited data (they also have tiered plans and did before Verizon made the switch).If that unlimited data is the deal breaker for you then you won't be thrilled with AT&T either on that note. You can still get unlimited data with Sprint for the iPhone 4s so that's an option to consider...for some people Sprint provides them with great service in the areas they need it...for others Sprint isn't that great. But the same can be said with any carrier. At any rate, you have the right to look for what works best for you. Just don't take it as a personal assault by VZW just because unfortunately you decided to upgrade to (or return to) a smartphone after the data plans changed. Those of us with grandfathered unlimited plans only have them because we already had them before the change took place. If at any point someone with an unlimited plan decided to downgrade to a non-smartphone then we would lose that plan and would not be able to get it back if we later decided to go back to a smartphone. Unfortunately, the tiered data plan seems to be the direction that all of the providers are headed towards if they haven't already.

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Re: Verizon values smartphone customers more than basic phone customers
fairfaxguy
Newbie

Thanks for the feedback everyone.   I can respect the fact that Verizon is running a business, and will do what they feel is best.   I downgraded to the basic phone before July 2011, so it's not like I decided to downgrade after the data plans went into effect.    Verizon may be treating all basic phone customers prior to July 2011 the same, but that doesn't change the fact that they are are treating us differently, just like a new customer.  I am more interested in hearing from someone in my exact situation, and I bet most if not all of the replies on this thread come from people who have a grandfathered unlimited data plan.  I think it makes sense to get out there and compare options with the other carriers since Verizon is offering no incentive to stay.

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Re: Verizon values smartphone customers more than basic phone customers
21stNow
Master

So, let's say that I owned a GM car in the past, with OnStar service at $100 a year, with all features included. I kept my GM car, but dropped my OnStar service two years ago. Now, I want to restart my service, but it is $100 a year for basic features only. All other features require additional payment. Is OnStar being unfair?

I say there is nothing unfair in either situation.

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Re: Verizon values smartphone customers more than basic phone customers
dwdowty
Enthusiast

When you consider the fact that it has been recently announced that smartphone users make up 44% of all users on Verizon, and the cost/profit of one smartphone being much greater than one basic phone or other service, it simply good business sense to value smartphone customers over basic phone users in some way.

One thing to consider about the grandfathered unlimited data, is that why it may not feel fair for those that do not get it or can no longer get it, it also acts as a hook to keep that grandfathered person with verizon, because no carrier offers actual unlimited anymore (no matter what the adverts say, they throttle your speeds after a certain amount) so they would move from verizon, and end up paying more for similar or worse service.

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