Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Wanted: Physics Degree So That I May Properly Function Cordless Phone

3 months ago I called Uniden about the cordless, two base/ answering machine unit we had received as a wedding gift, after several friends commented that the answering machine part was not working when they called. I had also begun to notice that when in my home, 2 feet from the base the phone would disconnect and tell me I was "Out of Range". Obviously there was an issue with the phone, so I decided to look into it and called up Customer Service.

The woman I spoke to, was helpful and gave me a list of configurations of button pushing, battery removing, clapping, spinning, dancing and yelping to complete in sequence to make the phone magically work again. Basically every short of an Indian Appliance Repair Dance.

None of the things she told me to do worked. Frustrated I just let it go, until today when I called back to get some better answers. The woman I spoke with today could very well be the reason each village still needs and idiot.

I explained the issue I was having, told her that after 3 months things hadn't been fixed. She asked for the model number of the phone, and I, not having been trained by Uniden myself stupidly read the number off the top of the phone "DECT 6.0". This annoyed her and she told me that wasn't the model number but the frequency number. I then asked her where I could find the model number and she sighed an exasperated sigh and instructed me to look on the back of the base.

While pulling it off my wall she asked me where in my home I had my phone base, to which like most Americans I assume, I replied "In my kitchen". Before I could say anything else she told me that was the problem and I had to move my phone base out of the kitchen if I wanted it to work. She even made sure to note that had I read the owners manual when I got the phone I would have clearly seen photographs explaining this.

Dumbfounded I asked why, and she replied in a way I would normally be proud of if she hadn't actually been speaking to me in that tone, she said "Don't you have a refrigerator in your kitchen?" of course I do so I said yes, and she again said the bit about looking at the photos in the manual and that the frequency of the fridge was interfering with the phone. I asked if this was all I had to worry about? Again the bit about the pictures in the manual....argh! and she said "Well don't you have a stove?" and I laughed. Which obviously was not good for her. I said "Yes of course I have a stove, but it's gas so how could that possibly be interfering with my phone?"

Oh come on, like you wouldn't think someone accusing the gas stove of messing with your cordless phone wasn't a total moron. And I was actually really wanting to know the answer to the question...I didn't ace science but common sense tells me that is total bull shit.

Her response: "Well I'm just not even going to get into that with you."

Did this girl forget where she worked....again?

Among the other useless bits of conversation many questions were asked, and not very well answered. Things such as:

Q: "Whats the range that the phone needs to be away from certain things in order to work?"
A: "We don't have that information"

Q: Why did my answering machine work for several months before hand when it was in the kitchen and then just stop?"
A: "You'll have to send the phone in to be looked at for that answer"

Q: "I haven't yet given you the model number, so are you sure that the location of the bas is the issue"
A: "You gave me the model number, DECT 6.0"
Q: "But you just told me that was not the model number and asked me to look on the bottom of my phone?"
A: "No, thats the model number, I never said that"

I called my husband after finishing my conversation with "Debbie Dumbass" from Uniden, laughing as I explained the phone wouldn't work because of the stove. He was interested in these much talked about pictures and looked up the owners manual on the comptuer, here is what he found:

Could someone please tell me where the hell I'm supposed to put my phone then? If I'm not mistaken it's midway through 2009 and many great advances have been made with electronics over that past 20 years. With a list of stupidness like that above, I feel like the phone should have a 40 foot retractable antenna on it and weigh 30lbs because of the battery.

Our house isn't that big, so I guess I'm going to have to move the phone into the middle of the back yard and hope the marching band practicing in the field behind our house doesn't qualify as "a noise source"....

Adding Uniden to the list of products we no longer buy. How are they still in business?

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