Buying an 02 3G data card? Don’t say you haven’t been warned

Let’s get one thing straight: The people from O2 have been excellent, and they’ve gone well beyond the call of duty in trying to get my data card working with my laptop. Trouble is , after 5 months (delay partly my fault), I’ve still haven’t any mobile data access.Now onto the juicy bit, here is why you should *never*, under any circumstances, consider buying a 3G data card direct from them.

  • If you buy direct (telephone / internet) 02 technical support is completely phone based. Laptops are a lot more complicated PDA’s, blackberry’s or 3G phones. This severly limits the help they can give you. If I get asked one more time ‘are you sure the card fits in the slot’ I’m going to …
  • – 02 have a better alternative : The 02 Experience stores (not the smaller O2 shops , but the bigger ones that can sell you 3G solutions) can let you see the card working before they buy. Trouble is they are a different company (it would be like asking a Vodafone shop to fix your O2 card). Still the guys at the 02 Grafton street store spent 90 mins to diagnose (one of the ) problems.
  • 02 Don’t actually sell you the cards, but use Totterdells (of Bray). Unlike the O2 people , Totterdells have a different attitude, including a ‘get stuffed’ quote on the first phone call. Things didn’t get better after that.
  • Because you’ve bought the card from Totterdells and the service from O2, who gives you money back when things go wrong?
  • If I can’t get one of the cards working, nor my friends (one of whom sets these cards up on a daily basis for one of the major Irish banks), what chance does Joe Blogs?

So the current situation is either (a) 02 come up with a way of seeing and fixing my laptop directly or (b) they give me my money back as their ‘mobile data solution’ has never worked. I’m not keen on either , as I just want to be able to blog from the Train.

Watch this space.

Update Monday 3rd July: No Callback from O2 about the promised refund. I’m disappointed as this is only the 2nd time the tech side of 02 have let me down.

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