Portable Techno-Capitalism

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JD
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Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:26

Re: Portable Techno-Capitalism

Post by JD »

Today we are trying to switch my wife's work phone over to Google Fi. "Nightmarish" is too strong a word, but it is proving to be a royal pain.
I sort of feel like a sucker about aspiring to be intellectually rigorous when I could just go on twitter and say capitalism causes space herpes and no one will challenge me on it. - Hugh Akston
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Number 6
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Joined: 26 Apr 2010, 16:41

Re: Portable Techno-Capitalism

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JD wrote: 09 Sep 2020, 14:19 Today we are trying to switch my wife's work phone over to Google Fi. "Nightmarish" is too strong a word, but it is proving to be a royal pain.
That’s surprising. For me, the switch (from Verizon) was painless.
" i discovered you eat dog dicks out of a bowl marked "dog dicks" because you're too stupid to remember where you left your bowl of dog dicks."-dhex, of course.
"Come, let us go forth and not rape together"-Jadagul
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JD
Posts: 12122
Joined: 05 May 2010, 15:26

Re: Portable Techno-Capitalism

Post by JD »

Number 6 wrote: 09 Sep 2020, 18:47
JD wrote: 09 Sep 2020, 14:19 Today we are trying to switch my wife's work phone over to Google Fi. "Nightmarish" is too strong a word, but it is proving to be a royal pain.
That’s surprising. For me, the switch (from Verizon) was painless.
We were switching from Verizon too. We did finally get the phone switched over successfully, and ultimately it only took about 3/4 of a day. Here's how it went, slightly compressed.

I sign up for Google Fi under my account with the intent of managing our cell phone accounts there. I put in the details for the shop phone; it's an older model, so they have to mail us a SIM card. This takes a few days to arrive. Then we realize that because my wife's business has a separate Google account from mine (obviously) and Google really wants your One True Google Account to tie everything together, you're supposed to sign in on the phone using the same account you signed up for Fi with, so this may not work smoothly. (Obviously you can add separate people later, but there doesn't seem to be a good facility for having the account owner and first user be different accounts. I now have a Google Fi account with no phones on it, but since you don't get billed for that, whatever.)

We try to sign up for Google Fi under my wife's business account, but we keep getting a cryptic error when we get to the payment step. We try with several different credit cards, we try with different browsers and computers; no dice on all of them. We chat with their support, and they tell us there's an error we have to clear up on the associated payment account (not sure why this was even a problem, since we were putting in new credit card details, not trying to use an associated payment account). The payment account has been suspended for some mysterious reason. We have to send in photographs of the credit card and my wife's drivers license. They say the account should get un-suspended at some random point. In practice it turns out to only be an hour or so.

I put in the SIM card (the one I got before; they're not locked to an account or anything), put the number transfer details into the Fi app, and hit "transfer". About half an hour later, it says "transfer failed because your details don't match those at your old provider." I double-check and put them in again. Same result. I triple-check. I reset passwords and PINs at Verizon. I try different combinations of stuff. Nothing helps. But we do get a text message from Verizon saying that the transfer has been initiated!

I go back to chatting with Google Fi support, and they tell me "You need to get a transfer code from Verizon" (not mentioned on screen or in docs anywhere). OK, what do I do with this transfer code once I have it? "You put it in where it asks for the PIN" Oh, the place where it says "account PIN", which is a completely different thing from a transfer code? But that works.

Ultimately, it technically worked fine, but Google's documentation is pretty shit. They go to such lengths to make it look simple that they hide some useful complexity. If the docs had said up front "Sign up with the same Google Account you use on your phone", if the error message had said, "Check the status of your Google Pay account", if the docs or the app had said "Put in your transfer code, not your account PIN", this would have gone a lot smoother.
I sort of feel like a sucker about aspiring to be intellectually rigorous when I could just go on twitter and say capitalism causes space herpes and no one will challenge me on it. - Hugh Akston
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