Class Trip to the VZW Store

5:59 PM -- My two year cellphone contract with Verizon Wireless is almost up which means it's time for me to finally get a new phone. This is a wonderful thing since the last two years of my life were nearly ruined by a device known as the Motorola RAZR. I hate everything about this phone. I hate the slow menus, I hate the 20 minute battery life, and I hate that it drops more calls than my older phone did. Furthermore, I am convinced that it hates me back. When I (drunkenly) leave my cellphone unattended somewhere, I pray to God that someone steals it.

So in observance of my impending freedom, Light Reading Events Assistant Christine Cascio, Red Panda, and I took a little day trip to the Verizon Wireless store during lunch today to examine some new devices.

Our first stop was a complete failure. Red Panda had led the way to what actually was an authorized Verizon Wireless re-seller. In other words, the store was likely a front for some shady operation going on in the basement. (Granted, selling cellphones is a shady operation itself.)

"Fear not," said Cascio. "I know where the real store is." Red Panda and I would quickly learn that Cascio was lying. She had no idea where the store was. We wandered up Broadway for nearly 20 minutes listening to Cascio proclaim that the store was on the next block. It was not.

Eventually, we reached the light at the end of the tunnel (or was it an oncoming train?) and were inside an actual bona fide Verizon Wireless store. There I quickly became angered when I discovered that the old "New Every Two" plan that for years had entitled me to a $100 credit toward the purchase of a new phone had actually turned into a $50 credit. "This cannot be," I said. "I've been doing this for years. I've been a customer since the Bell Atlantic days." But the salesman wouldn't budge. The terms of the deal had changed, and Verizon can change the agreement you signed years ago whenever they please.

I tried arguing with him further while Red Panda gnawed on his ankles, but he simply wouldn't give. Furthermore, the selection of available phones was depressing. The new Samsung Juke seemed pretty cool, but alas, I'm not 16 anymore. I'm tempted to get the Motorola Sliver, but since it looks like the evil fraternal twin of the RAZR, I'm terrified of it.

What to do...

— Raymond McConville, Reporter, Light Reading

allmenequal 12/5/2012 | 3:29:30 PM
re: Class Trip to the VZW Store Hello All! Just a bit of realistic reading, for all of those that know absolutely nothing about the difference between an Authorized Retailer and a Verizon Wireless corporate store.

An Authorized Retailer is an independently owned Verizon Wireless store. The plans are set by VZW, the handsets are mandated by VZW, and there are usually more options for accessories. Authorized Retailers are REAL, they are legitimate, and they work very very very hard to make and retain their customer base.

Authorized Retailers are put throught a rigorous set of requirements and qualifications to pass, and then choosen by Verizon Wireless to own and operate at the specific location. They are required to follow the rules of VZW and their franchisor, even though these rules are not the same as a corporate store. The store buys all their own merchandise from the pens you write with to that $500 phone that you want for free! What consumers don't realize is that the authorized retailers pay the retail price for the phone, and only make any money if you as a customer sign that 2 year contract agreement!

Pricing may be slightly different, but if so the only reason is to make back the cost of the phone. Unfortunately, VZW cell phones can only be purchased through designated vendors, and they ARE NOT CHEAP!!!! But instead of leaving and calling them not real, give them a chance! Tell them what price you were told, and they may be able to match it, or do something with a deal for accessories.

Authorized Retailers are not given the credit they deserve!

The business is legit, its hard, and it take 3 times as much effort to get a customer and keep them comming back. Not only do the corporate stores talk crap about the authorized retailers, they blatantly tell it to a customer, BUT DOES THE CUSTOMER KNOW WHY????

it so that that rep can TAKE AND STEAL the commission on that sale!!!!

So, the next time you buy a phone, consider what it would be like if you owned your own business! Every customer counts, and you would want that customer to give your store a chance.

The customer service is usually 100% better.
I WILL ONLY BUY MY PHONES AT AN AUTHORIZED RETAILER!!!!! Knowing where I can go no matter what, is what counts, because they will always take care of me!!!
PetPanda 12/5/2012 | 2:59:46 PM
re: Class Trip to the VZW Store Those were some delectable ankles.
Raymond McConville 12/5/2012 | 2:59:42 PM
re: Class Trip to the VZW Store this is why we can't take you anywhere
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