James Kendrick over at the GigaOM network has written a post detailing a horror story about how Verizon representatives are more or less just trained to lie about mobile broadband technologies.
The story is that Mr. Kendrick wanted to cancel his Verizon accounts because he was getting EVDO 3G and WiMax from Sprint. So what did the Verizon staff tell him in response? That WiMax isn’t available anywhere outside of Houston, which we all know is not true.
What confirms this as a company practice rather than one employee’s lies is that two different Verizon reps made this argument. Mr. Kendricks is a tech geek, so he knew better. Someone who isn’t up to speed on everything the mobile providers are doing could be taken for a pretty nasty ride by such lies.
But it doesn’t stop there. The Verizon employees made the argument that WiMax isn’t actual 4G the way that Verizon’s own LTE network will be, which is true. LTE is an integrated data and voice solution. However, the employees then proceeded to say that Verizon is almost ready to launch its LTE network in the entirety of the US. Yes, that’s right, these people said that Verizon will blanket the US in 4G coverage from launch day.
When asked to put this claim in writing, the employees shut up.
I find it very strange that Verizon thinks that it has to tell lies to compete with Sprint. Sure, right now Sprint offers better data connections in any market where WiMax is available, but Verizon is still the biggest mobile carrier in the US, and they’ll only get bigger when LTE launches. It’s downright shameful that a company would stoop to telling flat-out lies just to hang on to one or two customers.