MTN data woes reach Ballito

Shannon Hopkins
September 10, 2015
836 Views

North Coast resident Gavin Higgins is furious after receiving a R3500 data bill from MTN recently.
MTN customers around the country have been up in arms over rapidly depleting data bundles in recent weeks.
Higgins posted in My Ballito discussions about his experience on Tuesday, and received a huge number of comments and responses by other disgruntled customers, locally and further afield.
Higgins said his cell phone contract is meant to be called at R500 a month, though he has been told this does not apply to data.
“They say that that doesn’t apply to data, but that’s not what the salesperson said to me when I upgraded my contract at all. I’m waiting to hear back from them before I go the legal route. I’m not impressed with MTN, but if they sort this out then I will remain a customer of theirs, the ball is in their court,” said Higgins.
Higgins confronted the entity via their store at the Ballito Lifestyle Centre yesterday, and is now in discussions with MTN CEO about the matter.
He said he has been a customer for about eight years, and is now very upset with the entity for their impersonal way of dealing with their customers.
“We are not dogs that you can kick and expect us to come running back to you. If you want to remain a prominent network in this country, start learning how to treat your customers. Start respecting your customers. We are not just numbers on a spreadsheet, we are people, with lives. We have choices, and which Cellular network we support is one of them.
“I encourage all dissatisfied MTN customers, and I know there are many, who have experienced this to share this letter, or write your own and lets show MTN how insignificant we really are.” said Higgins on the My Ballito page.
MTN said in a statement that ‘depleting data’ is due to users’ phone settings. The network explains that data can be sapped via various means.
MTN said that if customers own LTE compliant smartphones, then these devices could consume more data. LTE offers faster internet speeds than 3G networks. However, major mobile networks in South Africa do not have extensive LTE networks yet.
They said new smartphone users in South Africa may also not be fully aware of the data charges their phones incur.
Other items getting the blame include automatic updates from apps like Facebook and Instagram that run in the background, social networks such as Facebook having upgraded to high definition resolution for the likes of photos, large multi-gigabyte software updates such as downloads for Microsoft Windows 10, data intensive websites and photo and video sharing.
The company also blames increased out-of-bundle charges for possibly depleting data.
For the full Facebook post and discussion see here.

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