AT&T rage - any options left?

decksnap

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Apr 11, 2003
3,068
70
I just wanted to sign up for AT&T and get a couple iPhones on Next.

Apparently, if you are transferring numbers from AT&T Go to AT&T, it requires going into the store to do the transfer. I was told via their site I could buy two iPhones through the site (with temporary numbers), and then bring them into the store to activate them and transfer the numbers. I questioned this because the store told me if I am porting numbers in-store, I have to buy them in-store, but the lady on the site assured me it isn't a problem (actually 2 different reps said the same thing).

Well, I got the phones delivered, and now the store(s) are telling me they won't do the number transfers, the website chat people keep assuring me it's no problem, and the phone people tell me I need to return the phones and order new ones with the correct numbers I want to port. (Which I can't enter when ordering online or I would have done so)

I've so far spoken to two different stores, 5 chat reps, and 5 different phone reps of varying titles, all to get nowhere. It can't be this hard. Am I missing something here or am I just destined for Verizon?
 

Chatter

macrumors 6502a
Jun 10, 2013
724
478
Uphill from Downtown
I just wanted to sign up for AT&T and get a couple iPhones on Next.

Apparently, if you are transferring numbers from AT&T Go to AT&T, it requires going into the store to do the transfer. I was told via their site I could buy two iPhones through the site (with temporary numbers), and then bring them into the store to activate them and transfer the numbers. I questioned this because the store told me if I am porting numbers in-store, I have to buy them in-store, but the lady on the site assured me it isn't a problem (actually 2 different reps said the same thing).

Well, I got the phones delivered, and now the store(s) are telling me they won't do the number transfers, the website chat people keep assuring me it's no problem, and the phone people tell me I need to return the phones and order new ones with the correct numbers I want to port. (Which I can't enter when ordering online or I would have done so)

I've so far spoken to two different stores, 5 chat reps, and 5 different phone reps of varying titles, all to get nowhere. It can't be this hard. Am I missing something here or am I just destined for Verizon?

Tmobile!
But in all seriousness, I think you need to find a corporate ATT store and have them call their own helpline. Its possible that the franchise stores want sales commission for iphone sales and are screwing with you.

Edit: If Ghostbuster (below) is correct, then I dont think my suggestion is helpful. Sorry!
 
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Ghostbuster386

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2014
123
12
Orlando, FL
Actually the store is correct. If you were actually doing a port in then this would be no problem but the problem lies with the fact that your numbers are already AT&T. There is no way to process what you want with all the numbers being AT&T numbers.

So what needs to happen is the phones that you purchased need to be returned so you cancel out the extra numbers and then you need to process the prepaid to postpaid move and get new phones. That's the only way it can be done.
 
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monkey28rb

macrumors 6502
Jun 19, 2010
298
17
You cannot create a temp number and "port" go phone over it. Return the phones, Call CARE and they can move your numbers to a postpaid account. At that point you can upgrade the lines.
 
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decksnap

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Apr 11, 2003
3,068
70
You cannot create a temp number and "port" go phone over it. Return the phones, Call CARE and they can move your numbers to a postpaid account. At that point you can upgrade the lines.
Only one of the phones is a go phone, not mine, so I don't have an account with AT&T. What I do have is $1500 worth of paperweights and a few chat logs where they swore up and down I could bring them in to the store to set up the numbers. The go phone is my father whom I would have been paying for.

Thanks for the replies, I guess this all too complicated for me. I don't know how to 'process the prepaid to post paid move' as you say.
 
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Ghostbuster386

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2014
123
12
Orlando, FL
Only one of the phones is a go phone, not mine, so I don't have an account with AT&T. What I do have is $1500 worth of paperweights and a few chat logs where they swore up and down I could bring them in to the store to set up the numbers. The go phone is my father whom I would have been paying for.

Thanks for the replies, I guess this all too complicated for me. I don't know how to 'process the prepaid to post paid move' as you say.

The prepaid to postpaid has to be done in a Corporate store and cannot be done over the phone. If your number is coming from a different carrier then you can do a telaconversion and replace the temp number with yours but that can only be done if coming from a different carrier.
 
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decksnap

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Apr 11, 2003
3,068
70
The prepaid to postpaid has to be done in a Corporate store and cannot be done over the phone. If your number is coming from a different carrier then you can do a telaconversion and replace the temp number with yours but that can only be done if coming from a different carrier.
Thank you - you seem to know a lot about this stuff. Let me ask you this - it's looks like i will need to return at least the 1 phone to get a new one in-store without a number attached. Is there a way to get them to waive the restocking fee since this was clearly their fault? I have the transcripts where they told me the wrong thing to induce me to order online, but I feel like they'll just say 'too bad we don't care if it was our fault'. And of course the web and phone AT&T acts like they are a different company from their own store. Optimally I would return the phone in-store with no fee and purchase a new one.
 
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businezguy

macrumors 6502
Jun 23, 2003
389
455
Thank you - you seem to know a lot about this stuff. Let me ask you this - it's looks like i will need to return at least the 1 phone to get a new one in-store without a number attached. Is there a way to get them to waive the restocking fee since this was clearly their fault? I have the transcripts where they told me the wrong thing to induce me to order online, but I feel like they'll just say 'too bad we don't care if it was our fault'. And of course the web and phone AT&T acts like they are a different company from their own store. Optimally I would return the phone in-store with no fee and purchase a new one.
If you bring in the transcripts with the information, I don't see how AT&T could charge you a restocking fee. I doubt very much that they will.
 
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Ghostbuster386

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2014
123
12
Orlando, FL
Thank you - you seem to know a lot about this stuff. Let me ask you this - it's looks like i will need to return at least the 1 phone to get a new one in-store without a number attached. Is there a way to get them to waive the restocking fee since this was clearly their fault? I have the transcripts where they told me the wrong thing to induce me to order online, but I feel like they'll just say 'too bad we don't care if it was our fault'. And of course the web and phone AT&T acts like they are a different company from their own store. Optimally I would return the phone in-store with no fee and purchase a new one.

Yeah I would talk to a manager. I know store can be difficult on that end but this was not your fault and does happen way to much. The other option would be to mail it back but that would take a long time to get your refund.

I suggest just talking to a manager and don't let them charge you a restocking fee for it. You do have the transcripts to prove that it wasn't your fault.
 
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nathan.kindle

macrumors member
Nov 2, 2014
32
0
If the charge you a restocking fee call att and tell them your issue they can credit your account. Also you can call retention. That's what I had to do when I had a return issue.
 
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0007776

Suspended
Jul 11, 2006
6,474
8,164
Somewhere
Umm... If you're on AT&T both your phones have a sim card, why not just pop the sim card out of the post paid one and move it into the new prepaid one, and then your number is moved over?
 
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decksnap

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Apr 11, 2003
3,068
70
Well this was finally solved in store. It literally took 3 employees 3 hours to complete the process. ive never seen a company with this level of ineptitude in their service structure. Just amazingly, comically dysfunctional.
 
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Ghostbuster386

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2014
123
12
Orlando, FL
Well this was finally solved in store. It literally took 3 employees 3 hours to complete the process. ive never seen a company with this level of ineptitude in their service structure. Just amazingly, comically dysfunctional.

Glad to hear you got it done. I am sorry it took all that effort in your part cause it should not of been that difficult. Misinformation can screw things up pretty badly and if you don't get the right person that knows how to fix it you will have a lot of work ahead.
 
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JulesJam

Suspended
Sep 20, 2014
2,537
308
Well this was finally solved in store. It literally took 3 employees 3 hours to complete the process. ive never seen a company with this level of ineptitude in their service structure. Just amazingly, comically dysfunctional.
FYI - Verizon reps are just as bad but they are nicer to you. They should be given they are the most expensive option.

----------

Umm... If you're on AT&T both your phones have a sim card, why not just pop the sim card out of the post paid one and move it into the new prepaid one, and then your number is moved over?
That's not how it works.
 
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lordofthereef

macrumors G5
Nov 29, 2011
12,902
3,475
Boston, MA
Happy you had a resolution...

I find that online reps OFTEN have the wrong information.

I wanted to return a NEXT device in store (meaning NOT mail it back) and was told this would be fine. So I picked up the replacement at Best Buy and wanted to just drop the previous phone off. NO CAN DO. Tried three different stores. Finally called and even THEY said it could be done... when I told them the three stores said "no" it was an, "oh, yeah, my mistake, we can email you a shipping address".

I questioned how I could possibly prove that I am sending them a working phone. I was told my account would be notated... I asked how to pack it. Rep just said "really well".

In general I have had great experiences with everyone at AT&T. This situation, not so much. I ended up shipping it back and everything turned out well. But realistically they could have claimed anything on the receiving end and I would have just had to accept that.

Beofre this all started I wasn't able to even process a Next upgrade. I was being told that Next upgrades are not available on my line. After a couple dozen hours (yes, really) of my own research I finally figured out it was a cross market account that was causing the issue. When I literally went into the store and told them how to do their job they were able to get it done in about 15 minutes.
 
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JulesJam

Suspended
Sep 20, 2014
2,537
308
Happy you had a resolution...

I find that online reps OFTEN have the wrong information.

I wanted to return a NEXT device in store (meaning NOT mail it back) and was told this would be fine. So I picked up the replacement at Best Buy and wanted to just drop the previous phone off. NO CAN DO. Tried three different stores. Finally called and even THEY said it could be done... when I told them the three stores said "no" it was an, "oh, yeah, my mistake, we can email you a shipping address".

I questioned how I could possibly prove that I am sending them a working phone. I was told my account would be notated... I asked how to pack it. Rep just said "really well".

In general I have had great experiences with everyone at AT&T. This situation, not so much. I ended up shipping it back and everything turned out well. But realistically they could have claimed anything on the receiving end and I would have just had to accept that.

Beofre this all started I wasn't able to even process a Next upgrade. I was being told that Next upgrades are not available on my line. After a couple dozen hours (yes, really) of my own research I finally figured out it was a cross market account that was causing the issue. When I literally went into the store and told them how to do their job they were able to get it done in about 15 minutes.
FYI - it's no better at Verizon.
 
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technosix

macrumors 6502a
Jan 13, 2015
929
11
West Coast USA
I've been able to do porting of numbers between different phones or the same phone, or any combination thereof without a problem, both over the phone without going into the store, or in the store if I prefer. This over a period of years since I'm always buying lots of phones. These problems I'm reading about are likely due to untrained associates. Get a decision maker and they'll be sure you're taken care of.
 
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Rajani Isa

macrumors 65816
Jun 8, 2010
1,147
56
Rogue Valley, Oregon
Well this was finally solved in store. It literally took 3 employees 3 hours to complete the process. ive never seen a company with this level of ineptitude in their service structure. Just amazingly, comically dysfunctional.
Hey, Comcast requires a news broadcast to get things done unless you don't mind bending over, from what I've seen.

This is nothing compared to that.
 
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technosix

macrumors 6502a
Jan 13, 2015
929
11
West Coast USA
How do you get through to a decision maker?
Be very courteous yet matter of fact. Remind them of your lifetime value as a happy customer. To achieve that you require a conversation with a decision maker. Asking for a manager can be easily dodged as anyone can come on the line as one.

Be courteous and persistent. Tell them you'll gladly wait on hold and they'll get the message you're not caving in.
 
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JulesJam

Suspended
Sep 20, 2014
2,537
308
Be very courteous yet matter of fact. Remind them of your lifetime value as a happy customer. To achieve that you require a conversation with a decision maker. Asking for a manager can be easily dodged as anyone can come on the line as one.

Be courteous and persistent. Tell them you'll gladly wait on hold and they'll get the message you're not caving in.
So you specifically say, I would like to speak with a decision maker?
 
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mattopotamus

macrumors G5
Jun 12, 2012
13,582
3,964
equally as frustrating is tmobile corporate stores. You cannot even return an online order to a tmobile corporate store.
 
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Wicked1

macrumors 68040
Apr 13, 2009
3,283
14
New Jersey
Tmobile!
But in all seriousness, I think you need to find a corporate ATT store and have them call their own helpline. Its possible that the franchise stores want sales commission for iphone sales and are screwing with you.

Edit: If Ghostbuster (below) is correct, then I dont think my suggestion is helpful. Sorry!
+1 I found AT&T support is good when trying to do many odd things, but you need a Corporate Store, or if I have to make changes I call their toll free number, sometimes I have trouble making changes or doing virtually anything online.
 
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