Last year I blogged about my entry to the world of mobility, courtesy of a Nokia 6600 connected to Orange. Unfortunately my experience of Orange was not great (poor customer service, coupled with a network which unfortunately doesn’t work very well in my house, even though I live on a hill) and as I suspected, I never used many of the smartphone capabilities of the 6600.
I’ve been out of contract for a while, but have been deciding what to do – should I go for a Windows Mobile 5.0 device (difficult to find on my preferred network – Vodafone), or just accept that I don’t need anything special because I have another mobile for work (a Nokia 6021) and that my personal phone is just a way to a) keep my number and b) mean I can ignore the work phone in the evening and at weekends?
As my new company car arrived last week and I have a fully-fitted car kit for a Nokia 6021, I decided to get myself another 6021 so I have two identical handsets (one for work and one for personal use), both of which can be used legally in the car. Unfortunately, the excellent reseller I used last year (mobilesuk.net) doesn’t deal in pay-monthly Vodafone contracts and I didn’t want to use the Carphone Warehouse or Phones4U as they have their own billing companies (both of which I have used, and both of which offered lousy customer service), so I went direct to Vodafone Retail. Except that I didn’t – and nor should you!
Whilst having difficulty contacting my local Vodafone Retail store, I called Vodafone’s customer services department, who, after I pointed out that not being able to contact a store to enquire about stock before driving over to buy a phone is a pretty poor start to a customer-supplier relationship, eventually told me about Vodafone’s telephone sales team on +44 (0)800 015 8079.
Even though there was no mention of it on the Vodafone website, I managed to get a Nokia 6021 free of charge, connected to Vodafone’s Anytime 75 tariff (for Â£16/month instead of Â£20/month), including 75 minutes of cross-network calls, a data bundle (with 100 SMS messages which can also be used for GPRS/WAP/MMS and would normally cost me another Â£6/month), plus free insurance for 3 months (which I declined), as well as the current stop the clock promotion whereby if you commit to an 18 month contract off peak calls are capped at a 3-minute charge. I reckon that using that lot, my monthly bill should drop by about 40% and I’m back on a network that I can use in the house!
Unfortunately, although Vodafone shipped the handset with next-day delivery (for just Â£3.95), I can’t use the phone until my number is transferred from Orange next Monday…
So, the moral of that story is do not sign up to Vodafone in a Vodafone store or on the ‘net – call them on +44 (0)800 015 8079 instead.
Finally, the plethora of devices that I carry (2 mobile handsets, a PDA and an iPod Mini, plus a notebook PC when I’m working) means that my Pocket PC is not seeing much use either, so expect to see one used (but mint condition) Nokia 6600 for Orange (boxed) and a used HP iPAQ Pocket PC h2210 (boxed) for sale on eBay soon!