GubMints is a bit obsessed with Telecommunications deals right now, as I’m trying to save $$ to cope with upcoming furloughs at work.
In mid-April, Freedom Pop announced launch of ther ‘FreedomSpot Overdrive Pro’, a mobile WiFi hotspot that connects to either 3G or 4G data networks (using the Sprint data system).
I jumped at the chance, as 4G data has yet to be fully rolled out in my area (San Diego), and I’ve been looking for a poor-man’s data plan to complement the $10/month AirVoice plan for my just-unlocked iPhone.
Here’s the ugly details about my FreedomSpot Overdrive Pro:
1) I was charged $50 for the device on April 29th, but then informed the Overdrive Pro was on ‘backorder’… the Hotspot modem did not arrive until May 14th.
2) The Overdrive Pro never worked on the 3G network. I did EVERYTHING to try to make it connect, including going to SPRINT’s website to download, read, and follow the entire Overdrive Pro user manual (you have to go to Sprint’s website b/c FreedomPop can’t even be bothered to copy/paste the pdf user manual file on their own website).
3) The product worked on 4G when I visited Denver, but still refused to connect to 3G when I instructed it to do so. So I know the product can work with 4G (just not 3G as advertised).
4) FreedomPop refuses to respond to email, web customer service forms, and their calling tree has hung up on me 3 times. I’m not asking for four hours of tech support, just an RMA number to return this brick. So far FreedomPop has been completely unresponsive to my calls, emails, and customer service requests via their website forms.
5) On top of that, on May 29th FreedomPop took the liberty of charging me for the next month’s service (yes, the same 3G service that they failed to provide from the very beginning). I tried to cancel the service in advance at the 29-day point- But once again their phone number, email address for support, and web forms were unresponsive.
6) I returned the device to FreedomPop (UPS Confirmed delivery) on 14 June. Still no refund issued as of 1-week later.
7) The charge for the Overdrive Pro and the charge for the second month of no-service are in dispute via my credit card issuer.
It appears FreedomPop is too busy marketing its new products to provide any focus on customer service. Until there’s evidence FreedomPop has straightened out their customer service department, I would avoid purchasing any of their products.
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