Verizon Wireless Bombs on the Blackberry Storm Launch, And I Need to Talk to Them

Quick post here to make a request for contact inside Verizon Wireless. The reasons are simple.

Yesterday, they along with Blackberry manufacturer Research in Motion (RIM) bombed the much-hyped Blackberry Storm launch. Speculations by Boy Genius Report seem legitimate – that Verizon implemented a downgrade on the phone operating system just before rollout causing a significant shortage in supplies. This is a failed launch and there is no legitimate excuse, I’m sorry.

Realistically, I should have received a pre-release Blackberry, but I did not. The reason is two fold. One, I do almost $200 a month in business with Verizon and was quite clear that I have thought about moving to the iPhone on the rival AT&T network.

Secondly, though this blog is certainly not a mobile or mobile-focused blog, it certainly carries plenty of weight in the technology community. At minimum, 50% of the Technorati Top 100 bloggers read Technosailor.com. At minimum. Confirmed. All that Jazz.

I cannot wait for a December 15 back order date, quite literally. I currently am at the end of my 2 year contract with the Blackberry 8830 and am on my 5th replacement unit of that phone. And that phone… is also dying.

So I need your help. I need you to put me in contact with the social media public relations people inside of Verizon Wireless. I need to get a call or an email ASAP – information can be seen by clicking on my name in the byline of this post. I need Verizon Wireless to get me a unit because, let’s be honest, they are available for corporate sales or internal priority designation.

Quite simply, I need to get one or I’ll be heading over to AT&T and purchasing an iPhone. Really.

Aaron Brazell

Aaron Brazell is a Baltimore, MD-based WordPress developer, a co-founder at WP Engine, WordPress core contributor and author. He wrote the book WordPress Bible and has been publishing on the web since 2000. You can follow him on Twitter, on his personal blog and view his photography at The Aperture Filter.

19 thoughts on “Verizon Wireless Bombs on the Blackberry Storm Launch, And I Need to Talk to Them

  1. You know. It’s worse than that. Sure, you should have had one ahead of time because you’re a worthy blogger and have reach to the masses. But the truth is, Verizon bombed the launch worse than most people think.

    I live in Los Angeles. Every store I passed in the morning had a line. I stood in line, and was #19 for the launch. There should have been no reason I got a phone. But apparently, over 9 or 10 stores in Los Angeles got “damaged” shipments, and there were only 25 phones. Truth be told, they let the first guy in line buy more than his fair share (I believe it was 5 or so).

    Beyond that, they didn’t let a single person in the 150 plus line know that. Additionally, people were told that there was a shipment coming later that day, but that no one could purchase one of that lot because they didn’t know when it would come in and they couldn’t guarantee it. So, theoretically, say someone came in randomly at 6:08 pm on Friday, the 21st, only 20 minutes after the new shipment came in, they could get a storm. That day. Even though the rest of the masses that got up early, waited in line, and should’ve been met with enough demand couldn’t even purchase one of that batch. Seems a bit shoddy to me.

    Additionally, if you bought said phone and got it “priority shipped overnight,” then you would be able to receive it the next day. I was told by the manager over and over again that it would in my hands on Saturday when FedEx oh so wonderfully dropped it off at my house (of which, you could only ship it to the billing address on your account–no exceptions). Come to find out, they chose “Standard Overnight” on the freight bill for FedEx, which does not deliver on Saturdays. Now, tell me how happy I should be that it had to be shipped to my house, that I won’t get it on Saturday, or that I won’t be able to pick it up from the FedEx location that’s 3 miles away from my house when I commute in the sunny city of Los Angeles 2 hours each way. Is that conducive to the working professional, to the VIP Business customer? I think not.

    So let’s recap just how badly VZW bombed this launch:

    1. No pre-order.
    2. No preference for VIP Business customers.
    3. No preference for people willing to wait in line, or even inform them of the situation.
    4. Lack of ability to have more than 20 phones in a store in one of the largest cities in the nation. I can’t speak of how bad it was anywhere else.
    5. Over-promotion and under-delivered.
    6. Lack of flexibility in locale of shipping.
    7. Lack of promise to deliver by mail when supplies ran out.
    8. Lack of Verizon to limit the amount that could be purchased by customers.
    9. Lack of Verizon to try and remedy the fact that they didn’t deliver and under-promised their customers.

    That is all.

  2. Interesting perspective. I’ve been monitoring the fray that followed the release of the Storm to see how consumers received it and you’re the first person, whose blog I’ve read, that (a) doesn’t have one and (b) is expressing a sense of entitlement that you should.

    I’m not familiar with your blog so I can’t speak to your following or the influence it might have on other consumers. It is however, clear that you have an over-inflated sense of yourself and of your opinion. Someone who truly believes their opinion to be held in high regard by others would have found something useful to blog about (take for example, Boy Genius’ article on why there is a shortage of the Storm) rather than a rambling pity party about how Verizon needs to get you a device.

    The company I work for is a corporate customer of Verizon’s and we’re still waiting for these devices so your assertion that corporate sales are being processed is inaccurate.

    Whatever credibility you might or might not have with your blog has to have suffered from such a pathetic rant. If AT&T works for you then I’d recommend taking your business there with the other prima donna’s. Leave the Verizon network to those of us who appreciate the quality, reliability and speed that are at it’s core…..geez!

  3. check ebay.com or another online retailer for a storm, there are plenty around, also if your existing one’s performance is declining, consider changing the option for how long emails remain on the device from “until i delee” to ’30 days” or less. … whenever my prior blackberries dye down this alwas seems to fix them..
    not a great fix but one you can try to hold off replacing for a while

  4. My understanding of the supply issues results from a downgrade to address a security problem with the OS version they were shipping with. I can agree that it sucks, but I have to give them a bit of credit on that front.

  5. Oy, I love anonymous commentors that throw insults and bombs. During a time like this, what Aaron is doing is ‘balancing the scales’. On one side you have a massive organization who hypes up and demos a device that, upon launch, may not even be the product they’ve been demoing the entire time.

    Bloggers with a good following should be utilizing their platforms as a bully-pulpit to look out for the average consumer. Rather than hiding under anonymity and making egregious remarks about a blogger who you haven’t been reading for the last few years, you should be thanking him for looking out for you.

  6. Wow, and people complained when Apple botched the launch of the 3G… at least I walked out with a working phone! I wasn’t incredibly happy about spending a day in line, but I got my phone, it worked and was what I came for.

    I have actually been thinking of trying out the Storm because Verizon’s network in our area is much, much better than AT&T. I think I’ll hold off just a little while.

  7. I’m obviously more entitled to my phone than you are.
    :)
    Why should I wait like everyone else? Don’t you know who I am? I kept waiting for the sarcastic wink wink nudge nudge.

  8. Funny thing is, I am sitting here watching the Broncos play and every third commercial is Blackberry Storm and all I can think of is FAIL! LOL Would have never thought that without this post alerting me to the problems and of course the comments here as well.

  9. I’m haviing a hard time actually beleiving this nonesense. Let’s talk about the iPhone, i had 3 of those worthless devices, all were 3G!. It took me 7 HOURS to activate…(and you are all upset about the downgrade).

    Well, i soon left that sorry excuse for a network, AT&T and now am back with Verizon. I have a Storm and to be honest there are a few things that I wish were different. It is not as fast as I would like and the touch screen takes getting acqaunted with, however…..i would not give this up for an iPhone…that is nothing more than a novelty phone (a good one, but it is a novelty)…

    Now, all the Apple people can get upset…i dont mean to aooffend but i just cant see the point that you all make about how the iPhone is great…it dropped more calls for me than a drunk juggling eggs…

  10. No offense Aaron but this does sound like whining. And I’m putting my name by it. But I won’t cast judgement on whether this alleged whining is deserved or not because I don’t know what kind of deal you have going with VZW.

    For the record I spend $230/month on my cell bill but I don’t expect much more than voice reception, data, and text messages, because that’s all I pay for.

    Also in a funny bit of irony, the ads on this site are all ATT phones for me.

  11. $200 a month ?
    I guess I should get one ahead of everyone else… oh wait I don’t write a blog that other bloggers read.

    Funny, I had never read your blog until you posted this self serving, inflammatory headline.

  12. I was FIFTH in line at a Circuit City. Did I get a Storm? NO! The THREE that CC did have were for freakin’ new users. I immediately called Verizon and placed an order for it, on Friday, the 21st at 10:13AM. I was told 2-7 days for me to receive it. I followed up on Monday, the 24th and was told the order will be shipped out tomorrow. After yet another call to them, I come to find out, the order wasn’t placed until that Monday I called to follow-up! I guarantee you the stupid b*tch who I spoke to didn’t tell me the order wasn’t placed on Friday and instead placed the damn order that day. I should now expect a shipping date of DECEMBER 8TH!!!!! That’s a full 18 days before it’ll even ship from when I first ordered, IF these imbeciles will do their jobs correctly. Knowing how this horrible launch has happened, I probably won’t get a new phone until the New Year! UGH, so fed up.

    I have been with Verizon for 3+ years, stuck with this sh*tty Razr, waiting anxiously for the Storm. Verizon has failed MISERABLY on this launch.

    In response to the other users, Yes, I feel I am very entitled to a Storm whether I’ve been with them for 1 day with a bare minimum plan or 10 years with a corporate plan. When it comes down to it, I am still their customer, paying for their salaries.

    Done with my rant.

  13. Angelina, My experience is almost exactly the same as yours was, VW store – sold out, CC (only 3 phones) – sold out, was at both minutes after store opening. Online – site crashed, called VW 3 TIMES!! Every time, the support person botched the order or couldn’t find any record of the earlier order. Finally went back online on 25th and ordered the phone again.

    So, to be honest, when I hear the author of this blog crying about how he deserves a phone, it makes me a little mad. Aaron, if you don’t have contacts within Verizon already, maybe your blog doesn’t have the editorial impact with them that you believe it to posess. I know that sounds harsh, but like I said your article made me mad and having gone through the leg work myself to get one, I have no sympathy for you. Next time try commisorating with your readers, not going on about how you’re basically better then them.

  14. I ordered my phone on 11/21 @ 8:16pm.. was told it would ship on 12/5. I was ok with that.. until i started hearing about people getting orders sooner on http://www.crackberry.com. so, i called VZW, and everytime I called, i got a different answer… everywhere from your oder hasnt been processed yet, to it has shipped, we just dont have a tracking number yet, to it wont ship until the 26th of December. Thats when I started to get upset… there seems to be no rhyme or reason to Verizon’s shipping methods.. and the inconsistency in the Customer Service call center is disgraceful. If my company conducted business this way, we wouldnt be in business for long.

  15. everyone needs to quit their bitchen, its just a phone!!!! wait your turn and you’ll eventually get one…it sounds like most people commenting and bitching about not getting one are the superficial ones who always got to have the newest toy…….grow up, and quit your whining…no one wants to hear you insignifigant problems!!!

  16. Aaron you’re hysterical!

    I have never read your blog before and probably never will again but at least I get your humour!

  17. Hi Aaron,
    Please you should stop whining, I left verizon 3 months ago to purchase iphone.
    needless to say Iphone is awesome but ATT service sucks big time. If i had a choice to wait for Backberry storm, than switch to ATT for iphone than i would have waited. the service for Verizon is just awesome. I hate Att service as it has so many drop calls or numerous times the sound is not clear. I never had this issue with verizon. They are truly great company with limted phone device. fortunately now they will have blk berry Storm that is not Iphone but very comparable so i would just be patient. if you like i would without a heartbeat exchange Iphone for Storm as long as you can switch my contract

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