And at last, after 5 days of not being available (!) the registration part of the Tesco Internet Phone Service (I’m going to call them “TIPS” for short) finally came back from the dead and started working again. So I dutifully registered myself, picked a phone number in the local area, and selected their “All day UK” inclusive package for £2.89 a month.
They then sent me an email with confirmation details, and an activation URL, which then triggered the credit-card authentication processing, and as if by magic, I am the proud owner of a new phone line.
Well, sort of.
Despite selecting the “All day UK” package, and them taking all my credit-card details, it turns out that they’ve provisioned me on a “Pay as you go” account.
So I called up the helpline (somewhere in India) and talked to a nice chap, who tells me that to turn my “Pay as you go” account into the requested “All day UK” account, I just need to enter the code from the upgrade voucher that was included in the box with my Tesco phone.
I point out that I don’t have a Tesco phone, and that in fact, I’d already told them I was planning to use their service with non-Tesco hardware when they asked me that as part of the registration process. Can the chap in India just flip the bit in their database to enable my account? No, but he tells me I can buy a £10 “Pay as you go” top-up in-store, which will also have an upgrade voucher in it.
I’m starting to get a bit tetchy at this point, and make clear to them that I don’t want to pay £10 to enable the account that I thought I’d already registered for. So the nice man offers to send me an upgrade voucher through the mail. It will take about a week to get to me, if that’s OK?
I ask if he can’t just read me the damned code so I can enter it into the website while I have him on the phone? No. All he can do is have one sent to me.
Words fail me. Do they want my business or not for &deities. sake? Anyway, since I have some time on my hands, I’ve just added a letter to Terry Leahy to my todo list… I can’t believe an aggressive, modern retailer would stand for a farce like this.
In other respects, the service looks like it could be quite good, if I can ever get them to properly provision it for me. The inbound number works well, the call quality seems perfectly fine, and there is built in voicemail too. You just have to get past the bizarre sign-up process.