Cell Phone Troubleshooting - How to Get Help!

Do you have cell phone complaints and are looking for cell phone troubleshooting help?  Similar to hardware problems, the first step is to contact your prepaid wireless or postpaid wireless provider, and keep in mind the following advice:
  • Have your facts and information handy and clear.  If it's a billing issue, you'll want to be very specific about what you paid for, and what you were charged, and be prepared to email or fax it to them if requested.  The more clearly things are laid out, the easier it will be for everyone.
  • Be prepared to explain what happened at least two or three times before you start getting frustrated.
  • If you don't have physical bills, or are on prepaid wireless, print out your account activity online.
  • As noted in the hardware issues section on the previous page, although you're frustrated and potentially severely pissed off (!), try not to get nasty; people want to help people who are nice.  Get nasty and you're not likely to make progress even if you're 100% in the right.
  • Escalate to a manager/supervisor to see if you can make some headway with your cell phone troubleshooting issue.  Don't be afraid to ask for the manager after their first objection, as chances are that you'll need to talk to someone higher up anyway.  i.e. Escalate before you get frustrated and lose your calm.
  • If you're a postpaid customer who owes money, make sure that it doesn't go to collections.  Unless it's a bill for thousands of dollars that you can't afford, even a few hundred dollars will be worth paying while you dispute the issue.  Once they send it to collections, it will impact your credit score for 7-10 years!  Rest assured that if that happens, you'll end up paying a lot more for a car loan, home loan, or even insurance due to higher interest rates, and you'll look back and wish that you had swallowed your pride and paid the initial bill.  Doing this takes a LOT of discipline and emotional intelligence to accomplish, however, believe you me, it will benefit you in the long run!
Can't resolve your issue - You have some more extreme options:
If you've made a genuine effort to try cell phone troubleshooting with your wireless provider, and you haven't had any response at all, or if you didn't get a satisfactory resolution, you have some other options.  You can pursue a third party to get involved:

1.    Contact the Better Business Bureau (BBB)
  • On their Website you can actually research your wireless company and see if there have been similar complaints.  This will not only give you peace of mind that you're not the only oneBetter Busienss Bureau experiencing a problem, but also provide additional support when making your case.
  • You can file a complaint online, and most good companies will respond.  It's somewhat sad that they didn't help you out in the first place, however, when you show that you're serious by submitting a complaint with the BBB, it helps.  No company wants to have complaints logged on this site for others to see, and when they do, it helps when the log shows that they ultimately worked with customers to resolve their complaints.  I submitted one myself in the past.  Although it wasn't for a wireless related issue, the company called me back very quickly after previously ignoring my calls for over a month; i.e. it works!

2.    Wireless Complaints FCCContact the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
  • The FCC homepage actually has a specific section for wireless phones.  Once you go through their initial problem description (multiple choice), you'll be provided with options regarding how you can proceed with filing your complaint.  Depending on your issue, you'll have access to an online form, phone, mail, fax, or email.
Although I note in the title of this last cell phone troubleshooting section that these are more extreme options, the reality is that you shouldn't hesitate to use these tools if you have made an honest attempt at resolving your cell phone problems directly with your wireless provider.

I suggest trying one option at a time, and keep in mind that these processes can take some time, so don't expect overnight results.  I believe that at the end of the day, none of us really mind the odd issue.  We enjoy our cell phones, and understand that there's a lot of technology involved, and that many providers go bankrupt because it really is an expensive and super competitive business.  However, we all have our limits to what we can tolerate.  If you feel slighted, or simply put - ripped off, make the effort to file your cell phone complaint as part of your cell phone troubleshooting process, and use these tools to help you resolve your issues!


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Cell Phone Troubleshooting

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