CNN: Verizon reps pushing Android over the Apple iPhone

CNN: Verizon reps pushing Android over the Apple iPhone
After reading stories in various forums from customers who entered a Verizon store determined to buy an Apple iPhone and walked out of the store with a new Android model, CNN decided to investigate. The forums were full of posts from Verizon customers who claim that they were "actively discouraged" from purchasing Apple's iconic smartphone. Forum headlines had titles like "Went in to buy an iPhone 4s... but walked out with a RAZR," and "Do Sales Reps hate the iPhone?" It was enough incentive to get CNN to dig a little deeper.

CNN's David Goldman spoke with ten Verizon sales reps in New York stores, on the phone and via chat sessions. Goldman asked about what his options were for a new smartphone as a Verizon customer and in all ten conversations he was pointed toward the Motorola DROID RAZR, the Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX or the LG Lucid. All three Android models offer LTE connectivity. When Goldman inquired about the Apple iPhone, all ten Verizon reps said that the phone was inferior to the other three handsets because the iPhone only runs over Big Red's 3G pipeline. A Verizon rep in a Manhattan store put down Apple's iconic device saying that, "The iPhone is a great phone, but it's on 3G," said one representative at a Verizon Wireless store in midtown Manhattan. "I'm not going to recommend a phone that's outdated."

The reporter initially told five of the reps that he was looking for a new smartphone while telling the other five that he wanted an Apple iPhone. When he said that he wanted an iPhone, none of the Verizon reps tried to talk him out of buying the model. But when he asked them if it was the best smartphone, all five said no. One rep told him that the Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX was faster than the iPhone while another told him that he would sell him the Apple iPhone if he really wanted it, "But my recommendation is 4G. I'd want the fastest, best technology that's not going to be outdated when I buy it."

Are Verizon reps being told to push LTE enabled models? Verizon Wireless spokesman Tom Pica said in a written statement, "Our sales force's mission is to ensure customers are familiar with our product line and to match the customer with the right device to best meet their needs. At the end of the day, our goal is that every customer is delighted with the device that they have chosen." An AT&T rep had a different response about which smartphone to buy. He told Goldman that, "It's all about the 4S now. The iPhone is the most popular phone, you know what you're getting, and it's a status symbol you can't get anywhere else."
 
source: CNNMoney


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189 Comments

1. Atrixboyyy

Posts: 597; Member since: Nov 03, 2011

What the iPhone 4s "outdated" ? say it isn't so...

61. -box-

Posts: 3991; Member since: Jan 04, 2012

I'm glad the sampled verizon reps are at least being honest with their customers. Personally if I HAD to have an iphone (I shudder at the thought) someone would have to pay for it, and I'd only accept it if it were on AT&T. They offer the fastest data speeds for it, they've had it longer, and tenured reps and agents know about its particular foibles. That being said, if I had to have Verizon (no thanks!) I'd most likely get the RAZR MAXX. One of my friends has one, and her boyfriend has the Galaxy Nexus, and he is so peeved at himself that he didn't exchange it for a RAZR MAXX when he had the chance. It's quick, feels great in the hand, is well balanced performance-wise, and its battery is epic.

140. sgtdisturbed47

Posts: 966; Member since: Feb 02, 2012

They are being honest about the 4S, but one of the most common complaints about the 4G Androids (besides the Maxx) that customers have is the awful battery life.

69. ZEUS.the.thunder.god unregistered

"I'm not going to recommend a phone that's outdated." lmao

126. appleDOESNT.com

Posts: 456; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

whats so funny? the 4S is a retread 4 that launched in summer of 11? 2 years old with a 5 year old 3.5" screen size, 3g, 512mb ram and a old and tired iOS.. YA, OUTDATED!

106. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Those Verizon reps are saying the truth. Verizon said they are only going to sell LTE phones from now on. If a customer comes in looking for the best, LTE is where it's at. 3G is a snail now & they are 100% correct the iPhone 4S is outdated/obsolete technology. They are doing those customers a favor. Now when someone says they want an iPhone 4S, they are doing the right thing & they are selling it to them. In other words they are not refusing the customer who want it outright. There is nothing wrong with what Verizon is doing!

125. iamcc

Posts: 1319; Member since: Oct 07, 2011

Yeah it's funny how slow 3G is... especially on Verizon. I had forgotten because I have LTE almost everywhere I go in CT but I was in Rhode Island over the weekend and wanted to hang myself.... only 3G and even that is spotty at best in that state.

148. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

You think VZW's 3G is slow, ask a Sprint customer how they feel about their 3G speeds. I had the privilege of watching a Sprint iPhone trying to download Bump...it was not pretty. I havent seen 3G on my Razr yet, but I my Dinc 2 wasn't bad at all.

164. jsalovsk

Posts: 1; Member since: May 05, 2012

U get it almost everywhere in CT?? Im from Bristol and it comes in 2 areas of Bristol. The 4G LTE coverage I've seen has been spotty at best in my neck of the woods lol.

173. Jarahawk

Posts: 43; Member since: Dec 04, 2011

You better believe that every time a sales rep sells a non-LTE phone his manager is chewing his arse.

176. firelightx

Posts: 71; Member since: Oct 13, 2011

Funny, I don't ever get chewed out for it. Quite frankly, I get paid MORE money for a 3G phone (commission-wise) because the price at which they retail vs. the price on contract tends to equal higher profits. Seriously, it's more financially beneficial to me to sell a 3G smartphone. And yet I will gladly overlook that fact for the sake of having the integrity to get the customer into a phone that will run smoothly for them. Not only run smoothly now, right out of the box, but run smoothly for them two years from now, days before their next upgrade. I tell people all the time, "You're marrying this phone for two years, here. Let's make sure it's one you can like for that whole time." And the 4G phones have so much going for them. The faster processors, the better screens, the download speeds... Why wouldn't I -want- to put a customer into one of those phones?

152. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

We are knew the iPhone 4S launched with two small of the screen and two slow of a radio this is no surprise to anyone.

2. MalakiMills

Posts: 257; Member since: Jun 15, 2010

I can see why they would push super hard for 4G phones. I think if the iPhone had 4G it would probably be one of the first things they offered. It might also have to do with the subsidy hit they take with each iPhone sold so they are trying to get away from that. Who knows......

155. jskrenes

Posts: 209; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

Right now, 4G is an easy way to get out of paying any subsidies to Apple. We'll see what Verizon does to make Android more appealing when a 4G iPhone hits.

174. Jarahawk

Posts: 43; Member since: Dec 04, 2011

When a 4G iphone hits...then the iphone won't be outdated anymore. Apple needs to get the iphone 5 out there.

178. firelightx

Posts: 71; Member since: Oct 13, 2011

It's called the Galaxy S3. And the solid flexibility and integration that Android offers. And the at-a-glance ease of use that the iPhone has yet to catch up with, thanks to it's stellar widgets and notification system. iPhone's time is done and gone.

3. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

"and it's a status symbol you can't get anywhere else." As I walked around my local Wal-Mart which happens to be the most ghetto out of the whole area, with very obvious impoverished citizens I noticed the iPhone 4/4S is everywhere. I only saw one Android phone. Obviously it's not a status symbol about being richer than other smartphone owners. Maybe it's a symbol about fitting in and using the common smartphone like everyone else. IMO the iPhone is the phone for computer illiterate people.

7. ardent1

Posts: 2000; Member since: Apr 16, 2011

It should computer challenged, not computer illiterate since that term doesn't make sense. Literacy refers to reading and writing, not the use of a computer device.

26. taco50

Posts: 5506; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

Studies show you're wrong

41. -box-

Posts: 3991; Member since: Jan 04, 2012

@taco And surveys say you're a fool. What does that prove?

43. tedkord

Posts: 17357; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

All different levels of education, income and intelligence use the iPhone. I would, however, agree it's a good choice for those who aren't tech savvy. I consider Android a superior OS (IMO), but you do need to be a bit more knowledgeable to get the most out of it. I mean, my wife has a Droid 2 (she prefers a hardware keyboard), and she gets by with it. But it could be so much better if she'd just try. She only just now, after over a year with it, figured out how to change the stock ringtones/alarms. It was doing the "DROOOIIIID" sound for every notification. She still hasn't put e-mail on it.

44. taco50

Posts: 5506; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

I agree. Android let's you tinker more, but there's plenty of android users who are not tech savvy at all.

101. -box-

Posts: 3991; Member since: Jan 04, 2012

@taco Agreed, though that's true of any product. There are people who will buy a certain item because they've been told it's a good choice for what they want, whereas someone who is very particular about certain attributes will choose the same item because it meets those attributes they desire, and will, in theory, get more out of it and use it more to its limits. Cars, computers, appliances, even cooking pots and pans; there are 'power users' and casual users.

153. hutty24

Posts: 84; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

My girl can't even use her iPhone to its full potential but that's because she just doesn't have time for that she had the chocolate for like 4 years before she had the iPhone

158. ardent1

Posts: 2000; Member since: Apr 16, 2011

I agree tech savvy is far a better choice than "computer illiterate". The iPad and tablets are visual products, i.e. using GUI thus reducing the need for literacy.

4. ardent1

Posts: 2000; Member since: Apr 16, 2011

Practically all cutting edge technology gets outdated over time. This is especially the case for smartphones ... in the android space, phones are constantly being updated leading to more cases of buyer's remorse versus iOS, respectively. In six month, don't be shocked if Huawei clones the Samsung S3.

72. crysiswarmonger

Posts: 81; Member since: Feb 06, 2012

Don't care who copies it or clones the best features to make a better system. Most of the things I saw for the S3 yesterday are "app" related or slight hardware improvements. Apple did not invent the mp3 format or mp3 players... they copied that... oh I said it.

157. ardent1

Posts: 2000; Member since: Apr 16, 2011

Apple didn't invent the tablet -- that was MicroSoft; however, Apple sold more tablets in its first year than all MS-Intel based tablets to date coterminously, respectively. What Apple is great at is making great consumer products. Inventing something and making great consumer products are two different things.

5. Twitch016

Posts: 23; Member since: Jan 26, 2012

I know a friend who's a rep said that a good portion of iPhone buyers come in and won't even consider other devices; they just want an iPhone for having an iPhone. I can believe that VZW reps would push other devices on those willing to listen. Any Android fan can list of half a dozen major features (LTE, screen size, removable battery, etc.) that iPhones simply don't have that people might care about. Can it honestly surprise us that VZW reps choose to push a plethora of devices with numerous features and feels over a single device and ecosystem? This isn't all that surprising to me, especially given the subsidy costs of iPhones that VZW has to eat.

6. thelegend6657 unregistered

BOO Verizon . From what i read and see (although i am not american ) ATT is better than Verizon

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