Ray Cromwell recently took a trip to Mexico, iPhone and iPad in hand. Despite every attempt to avoid roaming charges, AT&T still managed to send him a bill for $8500 in charges. Is a $120 fee a fair compromise?
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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+]

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