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Ting Customer Q&A – LeAnn Barga

LeAnn Barga

Ting customer since: Aug 2012
Previous carrier: Sprint
Monthly savings with Ting: Approx. $40/mo

Where did you first hear about Ting?:

I believe I first heard about Ting from a friend online.

What was it about Ting that resonated with you and made you want to switch?:

I love that with Ting I only pay for what I use, and if I use more than what I “plan” I am not bombarded with exorbitant fees. I really also enjoy the personal customer service, especially from Sarah in marketing. She was very helpful in my switch.

Were you in contact with a mobile carrier before you made the move to Ting? How long was left? What did that translate to in early termination fees?:

I was still in a contract with Sprint, I had 7 months left and my ETF was $70.00

What kind of savings are you seeing with Ting, month over month?:

I am saving over 50% savings each month. With Sprint I paid $84.68 a month. With Ting I pay $42.07.

How many phones and/or data services do you have on your Ting plan?:

1

When you explain Ting to your friends, family and/or random passers by, what do you say?:

I explain that I am with an amazing cell phone provider, Ting and that I pay less than half of what I formally paid with my previous provider.

Are you happy you made the move to Ting? Care to elaborate?:

I am very happy that I made the move to Ting. Not only is the customer service great, I can view my usage in real time.

What should we be doing better?:

I had wished that I could have brought my existing Sprint phone with me to Ting, but I am really enjoying my new cell phone.

BYOD – coming soon to Ting

UPDATE: BYOD for Sprint devices will hit beta testing soon. The latest details are in our BYO(S)D – Moving ever closer to Ting blog post.

Bring your own device (BYOD) is one of the most oft asked for features for Ting customers both current and would-be. It’s always been on our list and we’re always working to be able to offer it. That work is beginning to pay off. We’ll be rolling out the first phase of our BYOD program in Q4 of this year.

We’d say we’re excited to announce BYOD but that sounds too PR-ish. We’d say we’re super stoked to announce BYOD but that’d sound like we’re trying too hard. I guess you could say we’re at a loss for words to express just how super excitedly stoked we are to announce BYOD.

Before we dive in to the details on our upcoming BYOD plan, we want to manage some expectations. First, we’ll only be able to do BYOD for devices that work on the Sprint network initially [CLARIFICATION: and both Boost and Virgin mobile devices are excluded]. BYOSD, if you will. That said, this is a vital first step toward a more fluid mobile world where devices can move between carriers. We’ll continue to push. Second, this is not a backdoor to get the iPhone on Ting. BlackBerry, push to talk (PTT) and a small list of specific handsets won’t be BYODable (hey, it’s a word now). At least not immediately.

That said, for the vocal Windows Phone devotees we hear from, this development means that many Windows Phone devices purchased from Sprint can be brought over to and used on Ting. It also means that the super sweet Android smartphone you bought from Sprint can have a home on Ting and that the perfectly serviceable Sprint handset sitting in your desk drawer can come along too rather than taking a one-way trip to landfill.

We’ve got to hand it to Sprint on this too; this a brave and forward-thinking step. We partnered with Sprint because they’ve made it clear that virtual operators are important. This kind of development demonstrates just how important.

We’re still a good couple of months away from being able to offer BYOSD. Consider this a heads-up; if you’ve been hesitating on making the move to Ting because you’ve got a perfectly good Sprint device you’d like to bring along, you need hesitate no longer. Well. You need hesitate only a little while longer.

We must point out though, the sooner you move to Ting, the sooner you save. You can buy a Ting device knowing that your current Sprint handset can be handed over to your partner, your mom or the kids when BYOD hits. Running the numbers on the Ting calculator you’ll see that even factoring the device purchase price in, Ting will save you money on mobile. That said, if you have a reasonably current Sprint phone you paid good money for and would like to bring to Ting, you’ll realize those savings even sooner.

Our focus is on providing awesome and friendly mobile service. We’d much rather let our customers buy their phones from whatever outlet they prefer or bring their existing mobiles to Ting when their contract expires. This is a huge step in that direction.

How BYOSD on Ting will work

If you have a supported Sprint device that’s not under contract (or if you want to pay the ETF fees to get out of your contract), you’ll be able activate it on Ting just as you would a device that you purchased from us.

Your ex-Sprint device will use your Ting account’s pooled minutes, messages and megabytes.

Which phones are eligible for BYOSD?

Any Sprint phone will be eligible with a few notable exceptions including the iPhone, BlackBerry and PTT devices we mentioned before [CLARIFICATION: Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile devices are also not eligible for BYOD]. The list of exclusions isn’t finalized but will certainly be much shorter than the list of devices that can be brought over.

The reverse is also true

Any device purchased from Ting can also be BYOD’d to Sprint. It’s always been this way.

Strangely, we’re happy about this too. There are people who have been reluctant to try Ting because while we don’t (nor will we ever) lock devices, there’s a perception that a Ting device can only be used on Ting. This BYOD development makes the leap of faith more of a hop and people are more likely to give us a chance when Sprint is there as a fall-back plan. We’re sure that once mobile users get a taste of “mobile that makes sense,” they’ll have no desire to leave. That said, it’s the safety net that some people need.

We’ve been pushing hard for BYOSD. There’s still a bit of a wait but Q4 isn’t that far away. We’ll continue to push in an effort to make this happen in the earlier part of Q4.

As always, we’ll keep you posted. Follow our Device Updates feed to get the latest news.

If you want BYOD on Ting, please take a moment to fill out the quick survey that’s embedded below.

Device Update: Announcing the Motorola Photon Q on Ting

Device Update – August 23, 2012

The hits keep coming.

We just added the Motorola Photon Q to our device line-up. Granted, it’s got a long pre-order lead time of six to eight weeks… but we were so excited to have what Engadget calls “…the best full QWERTY phone on Sprint’s network” that we just couldn’t hold off.

To ease the pain of the long lead time (or perhaps to dial it up a notch from uncomfortable to excruciating,) we’re also announcing that one of the pre-orderers will have the full device purchase price of $520 refunded on activation.

We sent a device alert yesterday afternoon on this very subject. Sign up for device alerts by either signing in to or signing up for your account (no purchase required) and you’ll be among the first to know as we add new devices to our lineup.

Looking forward

It’s no secret that device selection has been one of the single biggest challenges we’ve faced. We’ve talked about it at length here on the Ting blog. We get that even the most sane billing practices, the most helpful CS team, the most granular device-level control and plans that adapt to your needs all come to naught if we can’t offer great Ting-compatible handsets.

Fair to say we’re over the hump.

Our device selection has grown to the point that we’ll be redesigning our Devices pages in the coming month to accomodate all the sweet new devices we’re adding. While this is an historically heavy time for new device availability across mobile carriers, we’ll continue to push to get the latest and greatest devices on Ting.

We added the killer Samsung Galaxy SIII for pre-order a couple of weeks back and we expect those to start leaving the warehouse in pretty short order, within the three to four week timeframe we offered when putting the SIII pre-order page live.

There are still some challenges but fortunately, they’re of the “good problem to have” variety; demand outstripping supply. The not so good problem to have: a surprise supplier issue means we’re currently running low on stock of the Samsung M370.

$60 off the Optimus S in purple

To fill the gap left by the M370, we’ll be offering the LG Optiumus S in purple at $95; $18 more than the M370’s $77 ask and a full $60 below the original $155 sticker of the Optimus S. The Optimus S isn’t a top-tier smartphone but it’s a very capable device… especially if you were previously considering a feature phone. The Optimus S will be available on our devices page tomorrow and orders will ship in three to five days.

We do still have a feature phone in the Kyocera Brio at $70. We’re also doggedly pursuing other feature phone options and we expect the have a new option in stock in a few weeks.

Our last official Ting device update post detailed the phones that we’ll be able to offer soon. Including the Photon Q. We’re also adding another “hero” device in the HTC EVO 4G LT. Another with the LG Viper. We’ll be adding some slick smartphones at around the $200 mark too.

All this to say, we’re very happy with the way our device lineup is coming together. We hope you are too. We’re always eager to hear about the devices you want to see on Ting and as always, we’ll be proactive in letting you know what’s coming.

Keep apprised by following our Device Update blog category.

Ting Promo Codes

Ting Promo Codes

We all love getting a good deal. Grocery bills, cell phone bills, cable bills, you name it.
The great thing about Ting is that our business model allows almost everyone to save. And save they do!

We love that people are searching for an even better deal when joining Ting. We like having savvy, price-conscious customers that do their research before making the leap. Heck, we do the same thing before we buy!

We’ve noticed a fair few people searching for Ting promo codes online. Perhaps you heard about Ting and are looking for a promo code to use. Maybe you saw a Ting promo code somewhere offering a $25 or $50 discount off a device or $25 off Ting service but just can’t remember what it was. Whatever the reason, you were looking for a Ting discount code, you arrived here… and we’d hate to disappoint!

ting promo codes

We love when new customers sign up with a Ting promo code from our Refer a Friend program or to show support for a podcast that we sponsor. By the same token though, some customers who are sold on Ting may then go searching for the first coupon they see pop up on a Google search, whether it be from an affiliate or a Refer a Friend code. We then pay a commission or credit to that affiliate, who didn’t necessarily do anything to introduce or convert you to Ting.

That’s why we ask that, unless you’re coming to Ting via a friend referral or via a podcast we sponsor, you use the official Ting promo code to get $25 off a new device or $25 in service credit.

tingpromocode.ting.com works just like any other Ting coupon code or discount code you might find online. The only difference is, it ensures we’re able to keep rewarding the people that contribute to the conversation and to our success as opposed to giving that money to people who don’t.

If you already have a Ting promo code from a podcaster or a Ting Refer a Friend code from a friend or colleague, go ahead and use it. You’ll get your $25 off a device or toward Ting service and the person that gave you that Ting discount gets rewarded. We want to continue to keep rewarding the source that gave you that Ting discount code in the first place! If you’re just Googling for a valid Ting promo code to use before you make the move though, please use the official Ting coupon code: tingpromocode.ting.com.

Thanks for your help and welcome to Ting!

Ting Customer Q&A – Anthony Colby

Anthony Colby

Ting customer since: Feb 2012
Previous carrier: T-Mobile
Monthly Savings with Ting: Approx. $60/mo

Where did you first hear about Ting?:

Several online tech articles (Tech Crunch, etc)

What was it about Ting that resonated with you and made you want to switch?:

The price, the fact that it was pay-for-what-you-use (since I never use texting, and very rarely use voice, it always annoyed me to have to pay for either). Also, the fact that I could live “contract free” with a mobile provider was a key motivator.

…How long was left? What did that translate to in early termination fees?:

I had about 6 months left, it translated to aprox $100 in termination fees. Given that I purchased a $500 phone that means I am eating away at a $600 “debt” that I got into because of Ting. However, since I’ve been with Ting since February, that debt is already nearly gone. Sooooooooo much more honest / truthful / awesome than with BigCell.

What kind of savings are you seeing with Ting, month over month?:

I used to pay $90, I now pay $30 or less per month… so $60 savings per month, on average.

How many phones and/or data services do you have on your Ting plan?:

2, a Motorola Photon 4G and a Huawei Express Mobile Hotspot

When you explain Ting to your friends, family and/or random passers by, what do you say?:

It’s pay for what you use. It’s combined so that you don’t need a separate plan for each device. It’s simple. It’s no BS. It’s way cheaper than I was paying on T-Mobile.

Are you happy you made the move to Ting? Care to elaborate?:

INSANELY HAPPY! Paying $60 less a month is GREAT, but it’s more than that. I like seeing all of my fees upfront, not being lied to about costs, and being on a carrier that doesn’t think the iPhone is a golden-god and Android is something that they simply have to “deal with.” Lately, with the fact that the Ting Army is starting up, I’m even MORE happy, knowing that Ting FUNDAMENTALLY supports developers, benevolent hackers, rooters, modders, flashers, and roms. Truly groundbreaking, again and again.

What should we be doing better?:

Lower data costs. You guys are a phone service that loves anyone, but is best for nerds. However, your pricing reflects someone who doesn’t (love) tech users. I’d rather see higher voice prices, and lower data prices, than what they are now. The data costs about 2x what it costs for my former tablet’s data-only plan ($35 for 3GB) and that, to me, is way to high.

Device update: On filling pre-orders and fulfilling promises

Device Update – Aug 16, 2012

We’re pretty pleased with the way our device lineup is coming together. The Samsung Galaxy SIII pre-order we announced in the last Device Update was a real win for us and, more importantly, for those of you looking for a truly top-end phone for use on Ting.

Coming to Ting

Top-end smartphones

Sometimes called “superphones,” these are the true top-tier smartphones; dual-core processors, a gig or two of RAM, huge, super high-resolution screens and the like are the earmarks.

HTC EVO 4G LTE

The HTC EVO 4G LTE is making its way to Ting. We’ll be offering pre-orders in mid-September with shipments happening in mid-October. We expect to offer the HTC EVO 4G for around $520.

The HTC EVO 4G LTE is a pretty killer device with a 4.7-inch screen 1280×720. It runs Android Ice Cream Sandwich (4.0) with the new, pared down HTC Sense atop. It sports a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM and 16GB of internal memory, expandable via microSD card. As the product name suggests, the HTC EVO 4G LTE is also an LTE-ready handset.

Motorola Photon Q

We’ve had some requests for a high-end QWERTY slider to replace the HTC Detail. Only too happy to oblige, we’ll be able to offer the Motorola Photon Q for pre-order next week; we’re expecting to have it available to us as pre-order on August 20, with shipments beginning three weeks hence. This timeframe is optimistic but likely.

The Photon Q is an LTE phone, it has the requisite slide-out QWERTY keyboard and packs a 1.5GHz dual-core processor and 1GB of RAM. It runs Ice Cream Sandwich, Android 4.0 (4.0.4 out of the box, to be exact).

We expect to offer the Photon Q for around $500 but exact pricing is as yet TBD.
[UPDATE: August 21, 2012: Pre-order pricing for the Motorola Q is $520.]

LG Viper

A little lower down the spec chain but not by much, we expect to have the LG Viper on offer in October for a little less than $400. Another LTE smartphone, the LG Viper has a 1.2GHz dual-core processor and 1GB of RAM. It runs Gingerbread, Android 2.3 out of the box. Thankfully though, an update to Ice Cream Sandwich is imminent, as confirmed by both Sprint and LG, though we have no specific ETA to share right this second. For more information on how the Ting Android update process works, please check out this article on the blog.

Think of the LG Viper as the LG Optimus Elite on steroids… but with LTE and a faster processor instead of acne and ‘roid rage.

Samsung Galaxy SIII

The Samsung Galaxy SIII is the top of the top-end. Pre-orders have been rolling in fast and furious.

There are a lot of moving parts that have to be taken in to account in fulfilling the SIII pre-orders. We’re on it literally every day, pushing to get these phones out the door as soon as possible.

We expect to begin shipping pre-orders of the Galaxy SIIIs across the four variants (Pebble Blue, Marble White, 16GB, 32GB) by early September and we’re pushing hard to move the shipping window up. As soon as we have a clear timeframe, we’ll certainly share it. Watch this space!

Smartphones

This is the most popular device category on Ting by volume. These smartphones come in at between about $200 and $300, generally feature single-core processors and smaller cameras. They’re not the absolute bleeding edge but they’re capable devices that won’t break the bank.

Kyocera Rise

This inexpensive slider will be offered for about $200 and will be hitting the Ting devices page soon. Sprint launches the Rise on August 19 and we’ll be able to offer it a couple of weeks later, in early September.

The Rise has a 1GHz processor, 512MB of RAM and a 3.5-inch screen. What’s interesting though is that we’re now starting to see Ice Cream Sandwich, Android 4.0, move from exclusively the domain of the “superphones” and into the more attainable smartphone space. The Rise is the first smartphone we’ll be able to offer at or around the $200 mark that runs ICS out of the box.

Feature phones

Feature phones aren’t met with the same fanfare as smartphones, which is understandable. These staid handsets don’t do much with data, have smaller screens and less advanced software running the show. That said, they’re a necessary part of any device line-up for the people that don’t need or want a smartphone.

Codename: Hyperopia

Within a couple of months, we’ll be adding a new feature phone to the Ting lineup. We’re codenaming this feature phone Hyperopia because we can’t see quite far enough out to get the actual product name. The codename is also ironic as it will feature large keys and options for large on-screen text, perfect for shortsighted people. Really though, it’s perfect for anyone looking for a simple, solid phone without much in the way of bells and whistles. Hyperopia will hit in the near future and by the next device update, we hope to have a device name and price point to share. Until we confirm the name of this impending Ting feature phone, please feel free to speculate wildly in the comments below.

Going from Ting

The device sale on the Huawei Express Mobile Hotspot and the Sierra 250u continues, and we’re also adding the black Samsung Galaxy SII into the mix at $50 off ($435 down from $485). As with the white SIIs, once we clear through the remaining stock of black Galaxy SIIs, these devices are gone for good which leaves little room for hemming and/or hawing. If you want one, you’d better get moving!

Nothing to report on the iPhone front as yet. We continue to work every available angle. We expect to make small steps forward (and possibly a couple back-steps along the way) before we finally break into that walled garden. We’re happy with the progress we’ve made thus far, even though it’s baby steps. We’ll definitely keep you posted as news warrants.

In other news

We continue to work with Sprint on LTE. The back-end work has been accomplished on our side so as soon as the virtual switch flips, we’ll be able to offer LTE to Ting customers (at no extra charge, it must be pointed out). We’re still looking at an early September timeframe… and again, our tenacious team is all over it.

A lot of the feedback we’ve received from Ting users, both current and would-be, is that we need to offer a wider variety of devices and that ideally, we should support bring your own device (BYOD). We’ve been working hard on both fronts and our efforts are starting to pay off. We hope to have news to share on the BYOD front soon. We only mention it now so you don’t think we’ve fallen asleep at the switch. Let us assure you: We as a team drink far too much coffee for that to even be a possibility.

Broken Galaxy Nexus dreams

In other, less fortuitous news, it doesn’t look likely that our efforts to get the Galaxy Nexus will come to fruition. That’s a whole post in and of itself but suffice it to say that Google needs to make its pure Google phones MVNO friendly. We’re adopting the thought that it’s their loss… but isn’t that what all spurned lovers say? Our sincere apologies to the unmodified Android devotees. We’ll let you know if that changes but as it stands, we have to say: Ting will not offer the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.

We’re hoping we can turn the tides for the next pure Google phone. Again, watch this space. We’re thinking a letter-writing campaign to Google HQ. Seriously. Who’s in?