[Editorial] VZW's New Usage Controls; Another Exploitive Way to Make a Quick Buck?

Discussion in 'Android News' started by dgstorm, Feb 9, 2012.

  1. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief Staff Member Premium Member

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    Is it just me, or does it seem like Verizon is sometimes the equivalent of a digital "snake oil salesman"? It seems as if they will try to find any way they can to score a quick buck or two from their customers. Here's a new case in point: the above video showcases a new "service" called Usage Controls from the Big Red. These usage controls help you manage and control how much data, text, downloads and minutes that is used on your account. You can actually monitor the usage and set limits on each of these individually, thus potentially saving yourself money by avoiding overages or to help monitor and protect your kids.

    It's actually a brilliant idea, but what seems ridiculous to me is that Verizon wants to charge the customer $4.99 per line to use this concept. It seems to me that almost any other company would consider simply implementing this as a feature to support their customers. In fact, speaking of support, that adds another dimension to this that is easily overlooked. This new service actually helps reduce the number of support calls that Verizon may get regarding billing. It allows the customer to basically see and control nearly everything that is going on with their account. So, not only will Verizon save money by implementing this for their customers, but now they want to gouge the customer for an additional 5 bucks per line. It seems to push the envelope on greediness just a bit.

    Don't get me wrong, Verizon is the top dog of the mobile universe food chain for a reason. They have good customer service, great coverage and awesome phones, and it's fantastic that they keep coming up with interesting innovations in their services to make things better for their customers. But, really... come on Verizon! Do you have to charge for every little thing?

    I know that almost none of you guys will be surprised that they are doing this, but share what you think. Is this more profiteering or simply smart economics?
     
  2. skidmarx

    skidmarx New Member

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    I'd call it smart economics. If users use this service correctly, then Verizon misses out on all those overage charges. Charging for this service guarantees that they will at least even out some of those loses. I would never pay for it, but I don't have a problem with it. Now, if they started bloating their phones with an app for this service, then eff that.
     
  3. Chizzele

    Chizzele Team Sourcery Developer

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    Can't blame them for trying..
     
  4. kptphalkon

    kptphalkon Active Member

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    And a new rumor has been birthed
     
  5. pc747

    pc747 DF Administrator Staff Member Rescue Squad

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    Amazing how things change over time. When I was a child my parents never felt the need for such a service. If I bust my limit once that phone was gone and I got to work to pay that off. And my parents never needed "services" to monitor what calls i made. They just simply took the phone or said "boy hand me your phone". Eh but I guess you cant do that anymore for fear of going to jail. So now you have to pay an extra $5 a month to have a company do it for you. :blink:
     
  6. tjk629

    tjk629 Silver Member

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    I'm fairly positive verizon has always had family usage controls. I think they've been advanced a bit though, but they've always been $4.99/line/month.

    Ultimately, I don't think $4.99/line/month is that bad. Considering you're only adding it to like 1-2 lines on the family plan, and what you're getting is fairly nice. I guess it depends on your kids though.
     
  7. LostRacer

    LostRacer Member

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    I've had it fora couple years now to keep my daughters phone in check. However if you have trust in your kids decicion making and they want to keep their phone its really not needed.
     
  8. Signum

    Signum Member

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    usage controls arent new, its been around for a good 2 years or so if not more.
     
  9. nikecar

    nikecar Active Member

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    But aren't the usage controls, juzst a txt that got sent warning, previously.

    I like this, but since its just me, I have no use for it. I agree with a PP that said to take the phone away. get a cheap prepaid with refillable minutes in case the phone gets taken away for your kids to have in an emergency. Its be basic with no txt or anything so they can call in an emergency. nothing else.


    ps, the actors stunk. The one hispanic dude was terrible, the black lady kept rotating around her body, the other blonde lady scared me.

    The "customer" in the hat was pimping, but if the kids are online all the time, that's bad parenting. Take the phone away.
     
  10. jmwood

    jmwood New Member

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    I have my own usage controls for FREE, just take the dam phones when there over used....:r_c:
     
  11. LostRacer

    LostRacer Member

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    The only drawback I've had with it is that my kids have unlimited picture messaging and texts. WIth the usage controls I was able to block data usage. However if my daughter received a message that had any web afiliation to it(picture, signature) I would get charged for the data used to receive it. The only way to block that would be to cancel usage controls. :blink: Thats what the reps in Verizon told me. I don't know what happene but afer 2 months of data charges something changed becasue it didn't happen again.
     
  12. Vulcan1600

    Vulcan1600 DF Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    I worked for VZW from 2006-2009 and the Usage Controls were available during those years. I can also tell you as a parent, I did use usage controls for a period of time on my son's phone when he was younger. It was well worth the $4.99 per month. I will not diss this service as a parent. If you don't want the service, then you don't have to subscribe to it. If you have a use for it, and if it's worth the cost to you, then use it. Simple as that.
     
  13. Vulcan1600

    Vulcan1600 DF Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    Usage Controls don't work if you are using the Network Extender.
     
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