Googler racks up unexpected roaming charges abroad, AT&T makes right with $120 fee

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That there is sarcasm in the headline. Ray Cromwell, a Google employee, recently took a trip to Mexico only to return to a $8500 bill from AT&T. He calls the carrier’s attempt to settle the debt with a $120 fee a “shakedown.” The full story:

“AT&T just called me a [sic] told me I had $8500 worth of data charges! Last week I was in Mexico, and I had international roaming plans for our phones, but not the iPads, but it didn’t matter, since both iPads never got a signal, and both had international roaming off, or so I thought. (pretty much said “no signal” every day)

At some point, one of the iPads must have locked onto a carrier in Mexico and started downloading something. They said it only downloaded like 300Mb, which came out to $8500!”

300MB for $8500 is quite a bit, so naturally Cromwell intended to argue the charges after which AT&T agreed to wipe the slate clean and retroactively charge $120 for an international roaming plan covering the trip. To Cromwell, that sounded a lot like threatening a customer into spending more money than intended one way or the other. We tend to agree.

Oh, and Cromwell’s real solution? Google’s Project Loon, a plan to use high-altitude weather balloons to deliver a connected network for cheap to rural and remote areas around the globe.

[via Google+]



  • ClayRogers

    Sounds like they did the right thing. He admits to leaving it on and he had no roaming plan, he should be singing from the mountain tops if he got 8500 reduced to 120.