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asquared0601's profile

Voyager

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3 Messages

Wednesday, March 11th, 2015 1:03 AM

NEXT is a huge risk, and AT&T & Best Buy will not help.

AT&T's NEXT feature seems like a godsend for those people who are planning on sticking with the service for a while, but I have recently learned that there are great risks associated with this program. I have been a loyal customer with AT&T and pay them a great deal of money monthly between my mobile service and uVerse, but the interactions I've had with the company in the past 2 weeks are quickly turning me off to my long-term relationship with them.

 

In mid-November 2014, I went to my local Best Buy store and was surprised to find iPhone 6 Plus units in stock --- unobtanium at that time. I decided to lock the phone down via NEXT upgrade, trading in my iPhone 5S in the process. I received my iPhone 6 Plus after handing my iPhone 5s to the representative at my local Best Buy, who inspected the phone, played with it for a while, checked the SIM and inspected it for damage/water exposure.

 

Everything was fine, we finalized the upgrade, and Best Buy provided me a box in a gray bag with instructions on how to wipe my data off the phone and how to ship it. A prepaid label was provided with this package. I wiped my data off the phone and sent it off a few days later -- I handed it to my local USPS mailwoman who frequently picks up my outgoing packages.

I never heard anything about my old phone again and my account proceeded as normal, when all of a sudden a charge appeared on my bill for the amount of the phone ($259.99). After calling to inquire about the charge, I was told that AT&T had never received the phone and added the charge nearly 4 months after I performed my upgrade. I got the usual run-around that they would "investigate" the issue and get back to me. The rep said AT&T would call my local Best Buy store for more information on the returned phone. Today I learned that they never called Best Buy, and I was told by the rep that I should just do it by myself -- makes sense because AT&Ts reps have no intention of being accountable for this issue.

 

I called Best Buy's corporate office and spoke to a representative that says they have no way of tracking the phone. The prepaid label they provided me and explicity told me to use does not include tracking. Once again, I received the run around and was told to contact AT&T and tell them that Best Buy could not help me since the phone was supposed to be sent back to AT&T. I was also told to contact my post office, but that went nowhere quick since I don't have a tracking number or any other information to reference.

 

I called AT&T after trying the post office and my local Best Buy, and once again got the run around. Simply put, AT&T and Best Buy do not feel as though it is necessary to get involved or investigate, and that I am liable for the charges for the phone that was correctly shipped but basically untrackable. I asked the representative to check the wireless activity for my old phone's IMEI/serial numbers and they confirmed that it has not been used since I performed the exchange. This leads me to believe that the package is either A. sitting in AT&T's receiving warehouse, B. in one of any post offices in the 50 United States or C. completely vaporized.

 

Either way, short of me lying down in the middle of my nearest AT&T store in peaceful protest, it looks as though this is my problem, even though it's obvious I do not have possession of the phone. Looking through similar forum posts, this is not a new issue with the NEXT program.

 

If this post does not end up in front of someone who will actually take accountability for the issue I am having with AT&T and Best Buy, I would at least like to think that any loyal AT&T customers would use this and similar stores as a warning if they decide to roll the dice with their old phone.

 

Any advice on next steps or any solutions other members have discovered would be helpful as well. 

 

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Summary

 

  • Performed AT&T NEXT upgrade at my local Best Buy
  • Shipped old phone back to AT&T using box and prepaid label provided by Best Buy
  • 4 months later, $259.99 charge appears on my bill for unreturned equipment
  • AT&T says they will investigate with Best Buy, this is never done
  • Best Buy says prepaid label was addressed to AT&T and they do not have tracking
  • AT&T confirmed IMEI for phone has not been used since I traded it in
  • According to two separate AT&T customer service reps, I am still liable for the charges

Contributor

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2 Messages

6 years ago

I again called Best Buy. They have nothing since it is an AT&T promotion. So who is supplying packaging? You tell me!! I haven't a clue at this point. I'm tired of the he said/she said game!!! What a joke this is. Such a scam by AT&T!!!

Tutor

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4 Messages

6 years ago

I am dealing with a similar issue. I recently upgraded to the iPhone 7 through the next program. My old phone was shipped back and promptly lost. After many calls, with abysmal customer service, the phone was finally found. Now AT&T is claiming the phone is broken, and is charging me the remaining balance. The device was in perfect working order when I shipped it. I used the box supplied by AT&T, along with a nice thick layer of bubble wrap. I have been getting the run around for the last 2 weeks. I never get the promised call back from any of the multiple reps I have spoken to. After 10 years of being a loyal customer, this will be the last device I have with this company. This is inexcusable.

Tutor

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4 Messages

6 years ago

Same problem as above. They received the phone and they are saying it's damaged and trying to charge me the remaining balance. I used a whole roll of bubble paper and sent the phone back in a case that I purchased. Now they can't find any information that phone is even being sent back to me. I'm not going to pay a remaining balance on a phone that was perfect and then not even receive my paid off phone back. What a scam. I've been an AT&T customer since 2008...and this last month has been horrible with them. I'm done!

ACE - Sage

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104K Messages

6 years ago

And the USPS has nothing to do with it?

I expect I'm playing Russian roulette every time I ship something.  

 

 

Tutor

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4 Messages

6 years ago

With the amount of protection I had in that box you would have to stab a knife thru the middle or shoot it to damage that phone. Not to mention I got a text from att that they never received the phone. I called the number and, Oh wait...here it is!

Tutor

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4 Messages

6 years ago

They told me that my phone has "physical damage", but cannot tell me, or more importantly, show me what the actual damage is. This is starting to seem more like a scam all the time.

ACE - Sage

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104K Messages

6 years ago

@Jholley. LOL.  I bought a phone off eBay.  Seller assured me It could be thrown off a cliff it was packed so well.

 

@benny260.  I think they are supposed to email pictures.  Contact ATT through the forum by private message. @ATTMobilityCare

 

 

Tutor

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4 Messages

6 years ago

@lizdance40 I contacted them last night through chat. They say they will show me the pics and have this resolved by Friday.

Tutor

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4 Messages

6 years ago

Pictures of my undamaged phone would be great, but they told me that since it was "damaged" they sent it back. But they can't seem to find any of the shipping info. Strange. Only way that thing is damaged would be them taking it out of the box and throwing it on the ground so they can charge me $300 and keep my phone and resell. No doubt in my mind on that one!!! I'll try going thru your link tho, thank you!

Tutor

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4 Messages

6 years ago

I would prefer mine sent back. I could at least re sell it. Instead, they gave me a trade in of 31.50 and a bill for 227.49.
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