Sunday, June 25, 2017

AT&T Their Trek 2HD and Their Online Reps


It's been a rough couple of days trying to get my phone ordered. The highs and lows have been ridiculous. Before I do this device review, let me just do a quick rundown of the valley-and-peak situation that led to me getting to try it out. (Oh, and I am talking about the AT&T Trek 2HD tablet, btw.)
My Note, which has been acting like a pre-pubescent child for weeks, finally hit puberty and went completely nuts on me. Basically, the dang thing bricked out. When I checked, I heard that the Note 8 is probably not coming out until September. That just won't do. I love the Note, but I need a phone now.
  1. I went online to upgrade to the Galaxy S8 Plus, which I've heard nothing about but the best things.
  2. That went well at first, but there were some glitches so I signed into the Help/Chat function to expedite things. (I was having a sarc-rage morning.)
  3. First chat rep ("Steve") is ever so happy to help me. He tells me that there is a promotion going on where I can not only get my much-needed phone, but I can also get the Galaxy Tab E and - yes, and - the Gear S2 watch. Wonderful. (I think the word I used in the chat was "Wowza".)
  4. "Steve" gives me the news that I cannot add the bonus items using my old grandfathered unlimited plan. I have to change to the Unlimited 3GB plan. Fine. I was going to eventually have to make a change. I do mention a concern about my budget and ask for a moment to do some math. Being helpful (or so I thought), "Steve" gives me a very precise amount of what my new monthly charges will be with all 3 devices on this new plan. And I mean he was specific down to a penny. I do some budget math and decide I can afford that amount. So "Steve" puts things in motion and we then move on to the devices I want.
  5. I should have known something was off when "Steve" processed the order for the tablet before doing anything about the phone. But he seems a nice enough guy and, like I said, I was having a bad day of the brain.
  6. Tablet is ordered and confirmed. At this point (another oddity), "Steve" says that he needs to pass me on to another rep to complete the rest of the order. Ohhhh-kay...
  7. Now I am dealing with "James" and he needs a moment to look at the what "Steve" has done to this point. We eventually discuss how excited I am to be getting my 2 freebies, how glad I am to be getting a new phone, etcetera.
  8. It's not until "James" mentions that the tablet and watch will not be part of my order that I realize that something is seriously wrong.
  9. (Let me stop here to mention that, because of my poor brain function, I tend to take meticulous notes about business transactions if I don't have a trusted witness. In this case, I was constantly printing the Chat record to a PDF file. Just in case.)
  10. I begin to remind "James" of portions of "Steve's" offers. Actually, what I did was to copy/paste those portions of the chat back in so that "James" could see them.
  11. "James" got so frustrated that I wasn't okay with not getting what "Steve" promised (he kept trying to convince me that I was misunderstanding something) that he turned me over to Chat with a 'supervisor'. So, now I am chatting with "Leo". Great. I'm on my third rep and I've been in this chat for at least an hour and a half.
  12. "Leo" also tries to convince me that I am misunderstanding what I can get with the promotion. I remind him of "Steve's" offers and of how specific he was even about what my new monthly cost would be. 
  13. Finally, I tell "Leo" that I would rather go into a store and deal with reps face-to-face because he and the other reps have me so confused I can't tell what's going on. They have changed my plan, begin shipment of a tablet to me here in Iowa, and I still have no phone.The phone upgrade is what I came for - so why do I have a tablet and no phone?! I tell "Leo" that I not only will go into a store for service on the matter, but I will be taking a copy of the Chat record. At that point, he pretty much starts "taking the5th". I don't blame him at all.
  14. Hilariously, before we end the Chat, "Leo" goes back on script and wants to tell me what a pleasure it's been to serve me. And he finishes by wanting to know if there is anything else he can do for me today. My response (after I finished LOL'ing myself into a stomach ache): "Seriously???"
  15. I went to the nearest AT&T store (which happens not to be a corporate store, by the way) and the young woman there fixed my problem inside of 15 minutes. She's personally going into a store in the next town to pick up my phone and watch, then call me to pick it up. That would be quicker than waiting for mail delivery. Oh, and I left with a tablet in hand.
Okay. Now, this is where I can begin the review of the Trek. I got the Trek instead of the Galaxy because of the personal opinion/recommendation of the young woman who so beautifully fixed the mess that those other folks caused. 

About this Trek, where do I start? Maybe with the Pros first:
  • It's very sturdy and well-built. I think it's a tough little device that would last a long time.
  • The display is pretty - though I will have more to say about that in a moment.
  • It's easy to set up and use.
  • Battery life is great.
The Cons? Unfortunately, there are more of these than of the Pros:
  • It's not a Samsung, for one thing. I love the Samsung brand and very rarely step away from it. That makes any other device hard for me to get used to. So, this one is totally on me.
  • It's not as user-friendly as Samsung devices. Again, that might be because of what I'm used to. (And ,my brain doesn't adapt well to new things.)
  • The display is nowhere near as crisp and red apple-delicious as a Samsung - any Samsung.
  • The built-in functions are not familiar or comfortable for me.
  • The USB is not compatible for anything else I own.
Basically, I realize that I am a Samsung loyalist. It's the brand I have used for my devices for years and it feels familiar to me. I don't like change.

I'm rushing back to the store tomorrow to give this thing back and get the Samsung. With that device, I will feel like I know what I'm doing. I have never had the watch, but it's also a Samsung.

That will make me happy.