The Verizon Phone Crisis

What Happens When Your Phone Breaks

Not the first time this has happened.

Not the first time this has happened.

Phones have always been a bit of a problem for me.   I’ve cracked screens while drunk, cracked screens while sober, dropped them off my car,  ran them through the washer….you name it I’ve gone through it.  Considering Verizon only gives an “upgrade” every 2 years, I find myself in a bit of a pickle every so often.  I never pay for insurance either because the monthly payment combined with the $100 co-pay doesn’t seem like a good deal.  The process begins.

My very first problem is that I really like Verizon.  People complain all the time about these big companies but the service is excellent and my bill is under $60 a month for unlimited call and text and 1gb of data.  Previously I’d use the “I can go to another provider” in negotiations but the fact of the matter is I can’t get this deal elsewhere (I tried with AT&T and a similar plan was $100 per month).  I called Verizon at least 4 times trying to get them to sell me a phone at an upgrade price and had no luck.  I tried pretty hard too but I never got to yelling and screaming.  I should note I’ve been using Samsung Galaxy S4.


After Breaking Your Phone

verizonI broke my screen while trying to remove it from the charger, fumbled it, and it fell face down cracking the screen.  I went to a mall kiosk to get the screen replaced for $110, they used shittier glass and I broke that screen within 1 week by putting too much pressure against it without even realizing it.  I got a free replacement of that screen with the intention of turning it in to the Edge program with Verizon which isn’t the greatest deal but I was limited in options.  As luck has it, I broke that 2nd screen within another week or so the same way I broke the first one.

Not willing to pay full retail for the same phone I had, the Galaxy S4, or even more for the S5 ($599 retail) or S6 ($699 retail), I went to the black market.  Verizon was willing to sell me a refurbished S5 for $419+tax.  I did some searching online and came up with an S5 for $279 through a highly rated dealer through Ebay.  I was unsure of how the process of buying an “unlocked” phone was but I was assured it was just swapping the SIM card.  Out of options, I purchased the refurbished model.


The Galaxy S5

carousel-samsung-galaxy-s-5-charcoal-black-380x380-1I received the refurbished model yesterday.  There were hardly any scratches and it looks like new.  It shipped in a white, unmarked box and only contained a charger with it and no instructions.  I backed up all my contacts to the cloud on my S4 and removed the sim card.  I  installed the SIM card to the S5 and powered it up.  After some brief installations instructions, I had a brand new phone (to me) that appeared to be working in order.

In less than 10 minutes I had my phone configured to where I was previously.  I connected to the WI-FI, handled all the email settings, then started downloading apps.  Here are the list of applications I use:

  • Twitter, Facebook, Spotify, Instagram, Fantasy Baseball & Football, Paypal, Venmo, PNC Mobile, Comcast, HBOGo, Uber, Shazam and SiriusXM

I called Sam and sent him a test to make sure it was connecting and there were no issues.  Overall I don’t think the process could have been any easier and I’m incredibly surprised that the SIM card is the key to your entire phone.

mac31People say, “why don’t you get an IPhone?”  I’ve read Jobs.  Aside from actually using the IPhone, I disagree with the fundamental approach from Apple.  They design their products with the need for total control.  Google / Andoid is an open source platform.  Now IOS may have changed and allows more of an interactive approach from it’s developers but I side more with Google than Apple on this.  I fundamentally don’t like Apple. Not saying it’s right or wrong, but I’m entitled to my own opinion on the biggest company in the world.