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Calling for Help

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I've got a dream and need your help.

I've decided I need a BlackBerry. This purchase will fundamentally shake up my world. I could be wired for some of my most inspired moments, like on aimless walks and in the bathroom. Imagine bitching about the commute during the commute.

My BlackBerry of choice is the 8703 (QWERTY is a must.) But there is one major hurdle to the dawn of my BlackBerry era: Sprint.

You've all heard these sob stories before. If I were a free agent, the device I covet would be free. Or at the most, $199. Since they already have my business, they have little incentive to deal. And my obsession is not worth $500 ("Wait six months and we'll give you $25 off!") It would be cheaper to end my contract, pay the $200 fee, and start fresh with a new carrier. But that sounds like a lot of work.

So before I give up on my dream, I wanted to ask the YesBut community -- is there anything I can do? Any secret word that might trigger the Sprint discount? Any wireless store looking for someone to review the product?

How can I help you help me?

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7 Comments

Let me get this straight. You want a new computer, but you might have to pay $200 in order to get it free? Oh man, I FEEL your pain!

said Miss Cellania on December 28, 2006 5:37 AM.

I think you should be able to get at least $100 off by extending your contract for the voice line.

As a former Blackberry specialist for Nextel before the merger, I would encourage you to contact a Sprint store and ask to have a corporate account executive contact you about the Blackberry. They are highly motivated to get you into a Blackberry data plan. I often creatively applied corporate discounts that are available to enterprise clients. Case in point, I was able to get a General Electric corporate discount for an advertising executive at the local NBC affiliate. As you know, the real money for wireless companies is the wireless plan and not the handset (which often sell for a net loss). Data plans have an even higher profit margin. Whatever you do, don't get a Blackberry in-store. Generally, the sales agents don't know what they're doing with regard to the Blackberry and its peculiarities. There are some issues about how you get your email to the Blackberry that you want to discuss before making a purchase Feel free to email me if you have any questions.

said Joey B on December 28, 2006 9:48 AM.

I read an article in the Wall Street Jnl a few weeks back about a couple start up companies that pair up people looking to get out of contracts and people who dont want to commit to a 2 year gig - thereby enabling people to avoid the onerous cancellation fees. They can do this because most phone companies let you off the hook if you can find someone to take over your service. Not sure how you would google it, but there are at least 3 of these companies and they all end up charging only a small fee ($20 or similar).

said Scotty on December 28, 2006 10:04 AM.

"kramer"

said Andrew on December 28, 2006 10:11 AM.

call sprint. tell them you have been a loyal customer for years. threaten to leave and see what they'll do. be nice, but firm. you'd be surprised what they give you. i have a sick deal because i call them everytime i need a new phone. bitch about how they help new people, but don't care a lick about their current customers.

said animike on December 28, 2006 5:06 PM.

Thanks for all the advice. And inspiration. At the end of round 2, my Sprint customer support representative offered an additional $150 discount. I know we can do better and will try again tomorrow.

said aquaman on December 28, 2006 10:17 PM.

Update -- I got the right customer service rep tonight. After sitting through the most surreal hold music, I was offered a deal I couldn't refuse. The 8703e for $129, including a headset, free shipping and a fancy case. (The case might not be that fancy, but that's OK.)

Thanks again for the inside scoops.

said aquaman on December 29, 2006 10:35 PM.
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