Stupid (Nokia|Wal-Mart|Virgin Mobile)!
Posted by tim in Pissed on October 23, 2005

Well, today was the day I bought a replacement cell phone. I've had my Kyocera for just about 2 years now, and I've been pretty satisfied with it. Sometime in the last month, though, the power socket for the charger broke (inside the phone), and would give me a lot of hassle whenever I wanted to charge the battery. Considering the life of the phone, I decided to go ahead and replace it.

After doing some research, I went to Wal-Mart and bought a new phone: The Nokia "Shorty", made for Virgin Mobile. This phone is comparable to my old Kyocera "K7 Rave".

After I got the new phone home, the first step was to transfer my account from my old cell phone to the new one. This is done using the Electronic Serial Number (ESN), printed on the inside of the battery comparment, through Virgin Mobile's web site. That part was painless and easy.

Next, I plugged the new phone in and let the battery charge. After it charged, I turned it on and attempted to explore the features. About 20 seconds later it turned itself off. I couldn't figure out what had happened, so I tried again. This time, the phone turned off within 5 seconds. I repeated this process for about 10 minutes, which is when I gave up. I tried to search the internet for a bug with the phone, and all I could find were 2 people who posted the same thing at several sites, saying that they had the same problem, tried removing and re-inserting the battery, and ended up having to exchange their phone 3+ times.

Frustrated, I sent the Virgin Mobile team an e-mail:

I just got the Nokia Shorty phone to replace my K7 Rave. The power connector on the Rave broke a few weeks ago, and I can no longer charge the phone. I'm not too upset about that part, considering how long I've had the phone, but I've got what looks to be a common problem with the Shorty. The first thing I did when I got the phone home was I used your form on the site here to transfer my account to the new phone. I then plugged the phone in and turned it on. Within a matter of seconds, though, the phone shut itself right back off. I figured it was the battery, so I let it sit for a while on the charger before I tried again: Same problem. Now the battery is about 75% charged, and the phone STILL will not stay turned on for more than 30 seconds, no matter if I try to use it, or let it sit on my desk. I use my phone quite frequently, so this is going to be kinda hard for me to get by without it. Is there anything you guys can and will do to help me with this problem? Thanks a bunch! -Tim Garrison

Their response was that I should return the phone to where I got it, and if that didn't solve the problem, I could get in touch with their support staff.

I called Wal-Mart, explained the problem, and they told me to bring it in to exchange it. I did. When I got home, I tried the same process over again.

At the point where I submitted the ESN of the new phone, I got an error saying something like, "Something has gone terribly wrong. Contact our staff at ..."

Now, when I got the phone, the cashier had a bit of trouble activating it, so I figured that could have been part of the cause of this problem. I went ahead and plugged the phone in and let it charge, then I tried again about an hour later on the Virgin Mobile website: Same error.

I called Virgin Mobile at the number they gave me, muddled through the voice activated menu, and finally talked to some overly-excited technical support representative who informed me that I could only make one ESN transfer in a 24 hour period, and that I would have to wait and try again tomorrow.

The good news is that this phone is staying powered on. Check out the pictures:

Old Phone/New Phone Old Phone/New Phone

The phone on the left is my old Kyocera, and the one on the right is the new Nokia.


yeah, that sucks, but its not the worst thing that could happen

  • Posted by macguy (Guest) on October 23, 2005 at 08:36:14PM
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