The UX of Trying to Upgrade my Wife’s Phone

We have Verizon and love the service in general.  Great reception compared to AT&T, which we had previously.  We have had very simple LG phones for a long time.  Since we have been in the contract for 2 years, we have the option of upgrading.

Katie desires to check her Google Calendar from wherever she is.  I tried several phones in the Verizon store, including the blackberry storm.  They all sucked.  They were slow and pathetic.  However, I saw a phone online and watched some demonstrations on youtube.  It is the HTC Touch Phone.  It uses Opera and is much much faster.  I tried a phone with the Opera browser in the store and it was very fast indeed.  It worked like the iPhone pretty much.  The HTC has a stylus and a slideout keyboard.  Katie would love it.

Here is the catch.  First, the phone is $350 after rebate and 2yr contract.  Also, it is required that you pay an extra $30 a month per phone for internet access. I’m sorry, this is just too much.  That is as much as I spend for internet access for the whole house.  We agreed that it’s just too much per phone.

We almost bought the phone, because it uses WiFi and we could get internet access in enough places.  But Verizon says, “Nope, you HAVE to pay $30 more, no matter what”.  What the hell is that?  They don’t want our money for the phone?  What difference does it make to them if we use the service or not?

In general, this is bad UX.  When people want to give you money, you should take the money.  Don’t make it hard to do business.  Don’t put up roadblocks that don’t have to be there.  Now, I don’t like Verizon.  I like HTC, who makes the very nice device.  But I hate Verizon for making it too expensive to get it.

One reply on “The UX of Trying to Upgrade my Wife’s Phone”

Aye, it’s stuff like this that is making me look into getting a G1 from T-Mobile — it’s about the only place I could find that would let me buy a smartphone without also requiring me to get a data package (that I won’t even use — I just like the combination of PDA and phone.  I don’t need to browse the net while driving down a road).

Whatya think?