3 Year Contracts and Life Expectancy of Phones

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ArsonWelles
Resident

Hi.

 

Quick question.

 

How is it that you can justify locking people into three year contracts, on phones that are not expected to last that long?

 

For reference, I have a Samsung Galaxy Fascinate, and have just passed my second year. The phone barely functions now. It crashes programs, and the entire phone will crash on an average of three times a day. Like, hard reboot crash. The battery lasts about 5 hours, on standby. Programs will crash. Heck, the dialer crashes. I can't even use it, I have to put a number into a contact if I want to call it. I have factory reset three times, once just two months ago. There is no water damage, and no physical damage. I have called and talked to your reps, and when I have brought this information up, have gotten a typical response of "Well what do you expect, your phone is two years old".

 

I know what planned obsolescence is, but how can you justify it to your customers? 

 

I've been with you for 5 years, and if the only answer that you can give me is "A phone won't last three years, but we're happy to get you into a three year contract with penalties to leave", I will have to seriously rethink what company will get my business.

 

Thanks

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grondinm
Resident

As much as i understand where you are coming from you must also understand that like any other electronic device it is all but impossibble to guarantee a life span. Alot of things affect how long a device will last. From initial manufacturing defects that might cause processesor or memory to degrade faster then normal to heavy usage or operation in very hot condition causing degredation. The nice thing about telus is that you can actually upgrade your phone at any time by simply paying off the balance left owing on the phone(and at the point you are at it should be pretty small). I know this is not what you want to hear...The worst thing here is the response you got from telus agents. They should not say things like "well you have a 2 year old phone what do you expect." Becuase some 2 year old phones still work perfectly fine. My last phone i had for over 2 years and never had any issues. That being said all electronics(even exact same products) are not equal. Had a computer start failing on me within 1 year of purchase and faild 3 other times after that.(i had extended warranty so all was good...) All that being said i think telus should be willing to warrenty devices for the duration of the payment terms/contract.

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Community Manager
Community Manager

Don't forget that TELUS doesn't build these devices. The warranty comes from the device manufacturers (Samsung, LG, Motorola, Etc) and not from TELUS.  TELUS buys large batches of devices to make them more easy for people to get their hands on. They also subsidize the units for their customer. 

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ArsonWelles
Resident

So TELUS doesn't stand by the product that they sell? And isn't the subsidy that they offer made up with the device balance?

 

It's really tough to stick with a company that won't stand by their own practices.

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daniel21
Neighbour

the life span of any product is different. i have owned numerous phones over the years. some of which i have stored away and work perfectly fine; only replaced because i just grew tired of them. and others i used for a while and had issues. to many factors can affect a device, dust,drops on ground, moisture, loading third party apps etc etc. when i think about my previous devices and the amount of use they actually get its amazing they last as long as they do. the only thing in my house that is on longer than my phone is my fridge. my phone is never turned off. my tv, my truck  just sit there until i use them. and i have had more issues with other electronics that barely get use. my truck has a 5 year warranty but i will own it for probably 10years, i dont expect the manufacturer to cover the wear and tear that will happen over the years. i dont think a phone or an electronic device is any different. if i take care of it and treat it well i can expect a long life from my devices.   of course there are always lemons out there.

i dont think it is fair to blame telus for a product issue when the user is the one using it, telus is just there to help clients acquire their devices cheaply. i personally dont want to pay $700 for a phone when i can get it for 200.

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Jebus
Friendly Neighbour

TELUS and other providers are in the business of providing a service, not equipment. They do however offer discounted prices on devices if you agree to sign a 2 or 3 year term. No one is forcing anyone to sign a contract. This is all of our choices! You can purchase the device for its full retail value if you do not want to be in any contract.

 

You wouldnt call up your TV provider and complain to them yout television set is broken and for them to send you a new one for no additional cost....

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gibbonboy
Resident

Keep in mind as of December the CRTC has mandated that you can opt out of a 3 year contract at the 2 year point with no penalty.  So your query for a 3 year contract becomes moot as of December 2013.

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Orle
Connector

I really wish people would understand the real CRTC.
3 year contracts wont be out the door.
There just going to be getting rid of the 50$ cancellation fee.
The DB. is still gunna apply. because its still telus's phone till you fully pay it out.
Its like Financing a car. Just because you quit the contract before it ends doesnt mean you dont owe anything.
Your paying for the Device all the same.

The only thing the ctrc is actually gunna do is raise the price of phones upfront and rate plans.

-Orle
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misterdonut
Resident

I've been with Telus (well, back then, it was Clearnet) since 1997, and I've been on 5 three year contacts.  For at least three of those contracts, I've had a phone die on me after 2 years.  My current phone, an HTC Desire, was an awesome phone when it came out, but I'm coming up on 2 years, and it's really starting to crap out on me.  It often needs a hard reboot (yank the battery, start it up again). 

 

I would also like to point out that I do buy the extra warrantee (which I have never had to use, because the phone generally works fine in the first year) and for this particular one, I even bought an Otterbox (the heavy-duty one) to help prolong the life of the phone....no dice.

 

I'm always digging up an old unit to use temporarily until the contract is done, then I sign up for a new 3 year contract and get a new phone.  It would be nice if they had two year contracts, haha!

tsizzle
Ambassador

Telus don't make cellphones, they sell them to customers to enable their service, its your choice what phone you take - if you take a crappy phone and it doesn't last 3 years, don't blame Telus, they didn't force you to take it. For example, most iPhone customers would tell you that their phone doesn't break after 2 years and still works throughout a 3-year contract. They also didn't force you to sign a contract & get a subsidized device, you chose this option because you didn't want to pay full price for the device. 

 

Your complaint should be directed at Apple/Samsung/BlackBerry etc., its a valid one, you're just barking up the wrong tree.

 

Also a correction to the guy saying your contract automatically becomes a 2-year: this is not the case, the Wireless Code takes effect for NEW contracts starting December 2, 2013. Any existing contract must only be compliant by June 2015. Do your research.