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Author Topic: $26,000 phone bill
SoAngel
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This is not one of those storied about a friend of a friend of a friend. This is ME and I have all of the proof in the world [Smile] It is quite funny actually.

Recently, a friend of mine and myself tried to set a world record for text messaging. We were trying to achieve 200,000+ messages in a billing cycle (total sent and received messages). I have the unlimited text messaging plan from T-Mobile.

From March 7 to April 6 was my billing cycle and I finished with 217,033 messages (and that is taking the last 4 or 5 days off because I was tired of doing it). The previous record that I could find on the internet was just over 182,000.

Today I received my phone bill from T-Mobile. It was 3,449 pages long and the bill is for over $26,000.

I spent a lot of time on the phone with them (T-Mobile) and they were all amazed and baffled. They have assured me that I will be credited the $26,000+ and I will only have normal charges, but it will take a few days for them to get it straightened out.

They told me it is because they have a limit at 99,999 even though it is called unlimited, so everything after 99,999 texts was charged $0.20 per text. Because no one had ever exceeded it before, they didn't know there was a problem.

The bill they sent me of 3,449 pages was actually for only the texts I got charged for, so if it was a complete list, it would've been nearly twice was many pages!

It cost them $27.55 just to ship me my bill in a box.

Anyway, just thought I would share.
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glassman
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do you realise that 217,000 per 31 days comes out to 4.86 text messages per minute at 24 hours per day?

if you sleep 6 hours per day? that comes out to 6.48 texts per minute...

did you use an automated text creating system?

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logandtimber
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That had me laughing outloud!

Wrote the story down, so I can tell the guys at break time tomorrow. That was great!

SoAngel. Nobody can say you arent dedicated. LOL

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SoAngel
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glassman- Precisely [Smile] (at least for your calculations)

There was no automated system involved, believe it or not. I was (and still am) using a Motorola RAZR V3T and a nice thing that you can do is send out to 10 or so recipients at one time for each message. The phone cannot send 10 INSTANTLY, so it basically queues them like a printer. So that buys some time to get another 10 queued up and so on and so on.

I could usually get 100+ in queue to send out and then I wouldn't need to look at my phone for about 5 or so minutes and then I would do it all over again. You can see on my bill that I sent out quite a bit more than I received.

Since I get up to go to work at 2:45am and I only get home at 5:00pm or so, I am sure you can see how I found the time. Normally, by the time I get home, get things done, eat dinner, etc etc, it is 9pm or later.

One bad thing is this... initially I was receiving as many as I was sending, but after the first couple of weeks, I learned that over night when I had people texting me, it didn't really help much because when the RAZR's inbox got full (about 100-120 messages), it didn't keep counting up. So my phone would be "receiving" messages at night while I was sleeping, but unless I was clearing my inbox, my total was not increasing.

And yes, it was quite a hassle. My wife made me promise that I wouldn't ever do it again. Somewhere around the 2 week mark, I actually quit for a few days and then I quit again near the end of the billing cycle with about 4-5 days left to go. Not only is it extremely time consuming, but because the RAZR is a bit outdated now, it also basically eliminates the phone from being usable. When I have 20+ messages queued to send, I am unable to make phone calls or receive them (it just would say "call failed") so that was quite a challenge as well.

Luckily I have a work cell phone as well.

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SoAngel
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Just for a quick fun note, I will mention that on March 15, we did a test to see how many texts were being be done in a hour and I was able to pull off 897. That is the only time I tried to log an actual time frame (other than the whole month). I think I could also beat that figure as well, but it gives you an idea of how hectic it was.
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T e x
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quote:
initially I was receiving as many as I was sending, but after the first couple of weeks, I learned that over night when I had people texting me, it didn't really help much because when the RAZR's inbox got full (about 100-120 messages), it didn't keep counting up. So my phone would be "receiving" messages at night while I was sleeping, but unless I was clearing my inbox, my total was not increasing.
sounds like spam, to me... [Roll Eyes]

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Adventures in microcapitalism...

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raybond
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man I think I would take to smoke signals

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a surfer
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Are you gonna call Guiness Book of Records??

Thats an odd one there SoAngel.

I can't imagine....

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SoAngel
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My friend and I were interviewed today for 2 hours by a local news group. I will post up a link when it airs and then goes on their website next week.

As for Guiness, I definitely intend to contact them. Top priority right now is making sure the bill is straightened out.

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glassman
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quote:
Originally posted by SoAngel:
My friend and I were interviewed today for 2 hours by a local news group. I will post up a link when it airs and then goes on their website next week.

As for Guiness, I definitely intend to contact them. Top priority right now is making sure the bill is straightened out.

fact check the article when it comes out, see how many details they get wrong or misrepresent... it surprised me how many "little things" got garbled in transmission... then consider how that happens every day and how much it affects the general publics perceptions.

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SoAngel
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I will be very curious how it is all edited and put together. It should be on TV locally early next week and it will make morning and evening show as well as their website.
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NR
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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090422/ap_on_fe_st/us_odd217

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