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Cell perplexion

May 29, 2010

Well, I finally bit the bullet (not totally sure what that actually means) and changed my cell phone’s minute plan. (And it’s obvious that all of my English classes teaching us to start with a “hook” statement have completely gone to waste. Seriously, Jessica? Cell phone plans?).

It took a long time because I had a predicament that I’m sure phone companies like AT&T create on purpose: they jump the minute plans from 450 to 900 when most people probably talk somewhere between the two amounts. And not only that, but if you downgrade to a smaller plan, your rollover minutes are cut down to the equivalent of one month’s worth on the new plan. On the 900 minute plan that was once a necessity, I now rack up rollover minutes like mad, making it seem even riskier to give them up. What if my phone usage suddenly takes a turn? What if something happens in the family that requires my phoning them regularly during the day? Suddenly the 4,000+ rollover minutes I had saved would be very helpful to have around. Yes, I’m serious–I had that many. It was ridiculous.

But what is more ridiculous? The customer service rep who helped me make the switch asked if I was calling to increase or decrease the minutes on my plan. I know he just has to ask and not assume, and he was an excellent rep, but I still thought it was a funny question.

So, beginning next month, my monthly minutes will be down to 450, and so will my supply of rollovers. Given that lately I use between 150-250 “anytime”* minutes per month, I should be perfectly fine. I just need to allow myself to grieve the loss of thousands of rollover minutes and then move on with my life, stronger for it.

One day I predict all phones will have unlimited minutes for a relatively small fee. Remember when the long distance from a landline (what’s that?) was by the minute and dependent on where in the US you were calling? Now I’m pretty sure you pay a flat fee, though I’ve been landlineless for about five years. My knowledge is based on commercials and ads I get in the mail.

*I’m not sure why they are called “anytime” since they are technically only minutes used during the designated daytime** hours. I suppose they have to say that since there’s that cruel trick where if you make a call at 8:59pm, your entire call is docked from “anytime” minutes even though the bulk of it will happen during the “night.” Life is unfair.


**Am I allowed to add a footnote to a footnote? Just wanted to mention that I certainly don’t consider hours up to 9pm to be daytime. In fact, I don’t consider anything after 5pm to be daytime, really, but they didn’t consult me on this matter, for some reason.

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From → everyday life

6 Comments
  1. Anonymous permalink

    You are very brave. We are still on some ancient cell plan that has some crazy small number of minutes that they don't even offer anymore. We don't use them up because most of the people we call are in the same company and so it doesn't use minutes. We don't have unlimited texting though, so we know at some point that may need to change because we've gone over twice now. But to change that means we have to change our minutes … and we're just not sure we're ready for that kind of commitment. πŸ™‚ Anyway, interesting to hear other people's thoughts on the matter. -R

  2. I don't have unlimited texting either (I have 1500/month) — how many are you using? I didn't know you were big into texting!

  3. πŸ˜› Thanks, Google.

    So you do look at my blog. πŸ™‚

  4. Anonymous permalink

    I'm not a bit texter, but we went over once when we traveled and I was sending daily updates to family. And then this past month when I wasn't the only one texting from my cell we went over. That was one clue for us something was up. -R

  5. Dania permalink

    So, all of those rollover minutes that you've been saving for months just get removed because you lower your plan? That seems kind of unfair. I think they should leave the saved ones on the books and then future months you'll have less to roll over.

    I can totally see the unlimited number of minutes thing happening. I remember when I used to pay by the minute to use the internet when I was on AOL. I was constantly in trouble for spending too much.

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