novalis: (Default)
novalis ([personal profile] novalis) wrote2007-03-27 05:21 pm

Fuck cingular

[plea for help at the end --- feel free to skip whining]

I have an account with Cingular. I am stuck with it (a) because I have a contract and (b) because it is the only cell phone provider which gets service in my apt.

The number started out as a Verizon landline in Cambridge, MA, was ported to T-mobile, and was ported to Cingular. I now live in Brooklyn, NY, but I wish to keep my Cambridge number because all my friends, family, and business associates have it. I recently asked Cingular to add another line to the same account, and to ship me a phone to go with the line. The new line will be used for [ profile] regyt's law business; it needs to have a Brooklyn (718) number so that her clients know that she practices in New York City. All of these numbers have been and will be billed to my Brooklyn address. Cingular told me that they would not be able to initially assign a Brooklyn number, but that if I called after I activated the phone, they would be able to. So, I ordered the phone on 3/13 or so.

I dutifully waited until the phone arrived (3/20), and activated it. Then I called Cingular. They told me that they could not in fact change my second line to a Brooklyn number while maintaining my original, Cambridge number. The reason I was given was that the two billing systems (Cambridge and New York) were not integrated.

I offered several solutions; all were rejected. Solution 1: Cingular could bill me for an individual account for my second number, and credit me for the difference in price. Solution 2: Cingular could create a new individual account with a Brooklyn number, and forward that number to the phone. Solution 3: I obtained a new Brooklyn number through a service called Grand Central. I asked Cingular to port this number in to the new line. Cingular refused, claiming that my Cambridge number and the new Brooklyn number had to be billed separately.

What I want to happen: I want Cingular to accept the port (or issue a new Brooklyn number attached to the same line).

The difference in cost is about $700 over the life of the contract.

What I have done so far: I've contacted the FCC to inform them that Cingular is refusing to accept the port. I'm considering suing.

None of this is actually going to work, because Grand Central sucks too much to use it temporarily while we wait for the FCC or courts to take action. We need a way to have a number temporarily forward to another that is free or cheap, and I just can't find one. Can anyone help?

[identity profile] 2007-04-04 02:45 pm (UTC)(link)
Junction charges for number porting. Also, it looks like Junction charges 2.9 c/minute in and out, so for forwarding, 5.8 c/minute. My minutes aren't that low.

[identity profile] 2007-04-05 01:22 am (UTC)(link)
You can use Junction in and Voicepulse back out, which helps. I do that a lot. But, it isn't trivially cheap, regardless of course.