Sprint: It's Not You; It's Me. Click.

Sprint: It's Not You; It's Me. Click.

Mobile phone carrier Sprint Nextel has sent out about 1000 "Dear John" letters, terminating service to customers that called Sprint's customer support line between 40 an 50 times a month, often about the same thing over and over. Industry analysts estimate that it costs $10 to $20 per call to handle customer service. So, right, wrong, or indifferent, the former customers were losing propositions for Sprint, and they're taking the PR hit and dumping them.

"While we have worked to resolve your issues and questions to the best of our ability," the letter said in part, "the number of inquiries you have made to us during this time had led us to determine that we are unable to meet your current wireless needs."

Sprint said that the customers didn't owe anything, that termination fees were waived, and that a switch to another wireless carrier needed to be completed by July 30 if they wanted to keep the same phone number.

So your cellphone is seeing other people. Do you still call, and leave messages on Sprint's voicemail? Walk by their mall kiosk hoping to catch a glimpse of their handset? Does your heart still skip a beat when you hear the little chirrup of a Nextel network message coming through a stranger's phone on the subway? Maybe it's time to buy an iPhone. It only loves you for your money, but it will never dump you.
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Umm hello? Customer service? Yeah, you can kiss my nappy white backside and know that either Cingular or Verizon have better network coverage anyway. Your customers were probably on the way out the door anyway...

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I've seen cost cutting strategies like this in companies before. Companies doing really well-- or really badly-- have nothing to lose by doing such extreme belt tightening. Someone likely has orders to lower costs at any cost, and is ambivalent about the PR hit.

They could just solve the problems... Naah.

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