Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I don't want to risk having to call XM again

Music. Digital Music. Kelli and I together pay over $400 a year just to hear music. Kinda crazy eh? I thought so.

We both have XM radios in our vehicles. We paid roughly $20 a month for both radios to receive programming. I only drive 11 miles to work. Roughly a 15 minute drive. If I drive 30 minutes a day for a month that's a whole 15 hours of programming. Roughly $0.70 an hour for music. Hmmm. Kelli drives for 30 minutes each way to work so roughly $0.35 an hour. Hold on to that.

I have been enjoying the Zune music service for over a year. I pay $16.23 a month including tax. I get all the music I want for that price. While at work I listen to my zune for roughly 2 1/2 hours. At least 60 hours a month (really much more as I play my zune through my car radio and each night while sleeping in bed) I pay roughly $0.25 an hour for music. As part of my subscription I get 10 free songs to own forever. Hold on to that.

Paying $36 a month for music is expensive. I recently bought another Zune. With my $16.23 a month plan I can fill up 3 Zunes with as much music as I want.

Kelli has been loving my extra Zune for the last two weeks. I loaded it up with all kind of music I hate, which she happens to love. She can listen to it through her stereo on the way to work and via headphones at work. I figure she listens to the Zune at least 3 hours a day.

I got to thinking....why not cancel XM? I won't miss it much (I will miss Headline News and Robin Meade!). Kelli only listens to music. We can save quite a bit of money.

I discussed the idea with Kelli. She was okay with it.

Well, I called XM to cancel. I went through the automated system and routed to India (I am pretty sure, very thick accents).

The agent asked for my radio Id. I will admit I talk fast at times (it's known as Darrenese...Kelli gets it, Eric gets it, Angela gets it....most people who are lucky enough to be around me for a while get it). I don't think my mother in law gets it....maybe she should visit more. Wait did I just say that. Doh!

During the call I spoke much slower than normal...so about average speed.

The agent asked for my radio ID. I said L6CPY04D. She read back something totally different. I then said it again very slowly using the universal (in flying anyway, cops use other words) words for each letter. The outsourced call center could not understand when I said LIMA-SIX-CHARLIE-PAPA-YANKEE-ZERO-FOUR-DELTA or L6CPY04D for my radio ID. The entire system is based on letters and numbers! Finally she got it. I said I want to know what happens with our balance if I cancel. She said I would get a credit. Fine. She asked why I wanted to cancel. I just stated I wanted to cancel. She persisted. I repeated. She said she would transfer me to the cancellation department.

After being on hold for 7 minutes the line went silent and I was disconnected. Grrr. I called back.

I again got a lady with a thick Indian accent. Once again she struggled to understand the English language. Once again "why are you cancelling?" Grrr. Once again set up for transfer. I told her what happened last time and can I have a direct number. Told "no." Grrr.

Once transferred I had to give my information again. This time to a lady with an mid-west American accent. I was very frustrated by this point. I stated I just wanted to cancel. She offered two months free service. I calmly stated, "I don't ever want to risk having to call XM again." She was silent. Offered another free service offer. I told her about the out sourced call center and that, "I don't ever want to risk having to call XM again." She finally got it.

Now we will pay $16.23 a month for music. Since I get 10 free songs a month it's really like paying $6.23 month (songs typically cost $0.99 to buy). Much better.

I will have to buy a car mount for Kelli. She likes the Zune more than XM as she can control the music and it works everywhere. I will have to transfer a saved song list from her old XM radio (it has built in memory). Then she should be content.

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