Amazon Reactivated

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As if my hassles buying a phone through Amazon.com were not enough, now I have a new wrinkle. I received the phone by FedEx last Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving. It wasn’t activated like it was supposed to be and I spent much of the day working with AT&T to get things straightened out and the phone turned on. On Friday I received an email from Amazon stating that my order was delayed and would be shipped the day before Thanksgiving. I chalked the email up to delays caused by the Thanksgiving holiday.

This morning I received another email from Amazon.com. My order has been shipped, the phone is activated, and here’s my new phone number. There’s even a FedEx tracking number that shows my shipping status—for the original delivery last Wednesday.

Calling AT&T, I discovered that I now have two accounts. One for the original activation and one for the new number that Amazon has just sent. Of course I cancelled the new number, but AT&T is unable to tell me if I’ll see any activation charges on my next bill. They don’t know if any additional charges will show up, but if they do, I’m to call them back and have those charges reversed.

It appears that Amazon’s systems aren’t well synced between the physical delivery of phones and the creation of wireless accounts. Although my phone was available and shipped immediately, it took a week for them to create my wireless account. During that week, Amazon’s systems thought my order hadn’t shipped yet because a portion of hte order (the activation) was still pending.

It’s great that Amazon shipped the phone as soon as it was ready, but I’m curious as to why it took a week to get a phone number. Any idiot can do that in half an hour over the phone. I thought automation was supposed to speed things up.It also would have been nice had Amazon included a note with the phone shipment explaining that the activation was still pending and that I’d get an email when it was complete.

Christine
December 6, 2003 11:40 AM

My boss went through some very similar issues when he ordered his phone directly from AT&T. Makes me have my doubts about ordering online - I think when I finally move my cell phone number to a new phone, I'll do it at a store in person to avoid the headaches.

Andrew
December 6, 2003 3:00 PM

My experience with automation is that customer service and competancy in general get tossed out the window. It would be nice to find an online shop where key processes are monitored by personnel who know what they're doing and are able to recognize and fix (maybe even prevent) problems before something like your case happens, where time and money are tied up for no good reason.

Erik
November 20, 2004 8:05 AM

I am running into this same problem right now. I ordered on Tuesday and have found that the email system at Amazon does not send messages that are timely. I spoke with the Cell Phone Dept. every day this week and when I got home in the evenings I received emails that contradicted what I had been told during the day. I was later told that the mails were delayed in their system and unfortunately made it look like the issues hadn't been solved...so I've spent many hours on the phone with their entirely unhelpful customer service. Now I've received the phone and it won't activate. I spoke with AT&T last night for two hours while they looked for the IMEI and SIM IDs in their system to no avail. I called Amazon and was told to call their Cell Dept. today (Sat.) and when I did I was told by their Rep. in India that the Dept. is closed weekends. Very frustrating! Now I'm leaving for a trip overseas and will not have a cell phone...unless of course I just call AT&T and get them to activate with a new number. I am curious Adam...can you update or send an email to let me know if you ever received any additional charges for the second line? I want to go the route you did but want to be sure there are no more hidden costs...like Amazon charging full price for the phone, etc.

NAG
December 21, 2004 11:22 AM

I had also ordered phone thru amazon with tmobile plan on it, but just received only phone and not the plan . I had send several mails and also talked to the amazon cellphone dept, and still waiting for the phone to get activated . I am not sure, wheter , they intentionally test the patience of customers ?.

Gaurav
August 25, 2005 7:26 AM

Same problem with Amazon - Verizon phone. Ordered a verizon phone and received it 2 weeks late due to the phone being out of stock. The Rep told me that they will upgrade my shipping to overnight for free. Which they did but now that I have the phone it wont activate and verizon does not know what to do. Cant get to seem get a number to call the cell phone dept, in Amazon .. This is FRUSTRATING !!!!!

enrique
November 24, 2006 11:23 AM

Welp ... I had other problems with amazon. I just bought the www.amazonsuck.com domain and placed all the comunication between me and amazon in there for display. GRRRR...

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