Nemo Me Impune Lacessit

Sunday, 1 February 2015

. . . And So I Join the Smartphone Revolution

Filed under: Life, Technology — Tags: , , , , , — mikewb1971 @ 10:20 AM (10:20)

Yes, I finally broke down and bought a smartphone. In my case, it’s an Alcatel Evolve2 that I picked up from Wal-Mart for ∅49.99, plus taxes.

For service, I went with the ∅60 per month plan from Metro PCS – that’s the one where “unlimited” really means unlimited.

One of the reasons I did this was that my flip-phones from Tracfone would lose service in the middle of Albuquerque. And this with three, four bars for signal showing on the top of the screen. I can understand that sort of thing happening in the middle of the Gila or on McGregor Range, but in the middle of a city with a population of 500,000 and change?!

But the real reason I made the jump is that more and more, the damn smartphones are becoming an integral part of American life. In five years, I expect that anyone without one will be in the same boat as someone who doesn’t have internet access today.

For what it’s worth, I thought I was getting the 4G LTE model, but this one seems to be 3G instead. Still, it does what I need it to do – make phone calls, send and receive text messages, let me skim through Facebook and Google Plus, skim email titles, do some occasional web browsing.

Still, it’s a pig when it comes to power consumption — even when in “idle” mode, the battery depletes within a day or two. Maybe I need to adjust my settings.

Another upside is that I’m ready to blow off commercial radio and leave the CDs at home, now that I’ve installed iHeartRadio on it.

Finally, I will be extremely pissed if anyone installs any of these asinine games – the casino stuff, Farmville, Candy Crush – on it.


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Thursday, 11 December 2008

How To Deal with Telemarketers?

Filed under: Life, Quizzes / Surveys — Tags: , , , — mikewb1971 @ 2:35 PM (14:35)

The question was “How do you deal with telemarketers?

I usually just hang up on them without a word when they start the sales pitch. It’s the easiest way to handle the situation.

Now you’re saying “That’s not polite,” right? That’s how they hook you in — most people don’t want to be rude or offensive to anyone, so they go along to avoid even appearing that way. Even when the other party is, for all intents and purposes, a disembodied voice from the aether. So most people will keep listening as the caller keeps it up with the pitch.

If you don’t want to deal with the call, yet don’t want to be rude, just say that you’re not authorized to make decisions, you’re not the person the caller is asking for, “he doesn’t live here anymore,” that kind of thing. Is it lying? Technically, yes. Are you defrauding the caller? Not in the slightest, unless money has changed hands or you’ve received something from the company sponsoring the call.

At the same time, remember that the telemarketer gets paid based on how many sales they get. That’s a certain percentage of the total number of people that they call, so the more people that they call, the more sales they get. One of the maxims of the industry is “STICK TO THE SCRIPT!”, as the boss doesn’t want the caller to get bogged down explaining details to prospective customers. The boss wants the caller to pitch the selling points of the product or service in a concise, catchy paragraph, so that if the prospect isn’t interested, the caller can move on to the next prospect.

How do the callers get your number? Sometimes they get it from a list purchased from a group that’s interested in that sort of thing — that’s called “warm marketing” to a degree. Other times they just tear a page from the local phone book. Still other times they have an automatic phone detector hooked up that picks up your line, even if it’s unlisted.

I don’t see it as being worth my time and energy getting pissed off with telemarketers by saying “Take me off your list.” I’ve noticed that even with the federally-mandated “do not call” list, I still receive the calls from them.

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