Here’s what happened. Friday or so, I saw some tweets indicating Karma was changing their pricing. It sounded like starting June 1, you’d be charged about $3/mo to access your already-paid-for data. Yikes.
Not being super-sure if this affected me (I didn’t get a notification or anything), or if I was missing something critical, I emailed them. Sadly, I don’t have my exact text, but I politely yet firmly asked them for clarification. I expressed my concern about what I’d heard, and wanted to hear from them, acknowledging that maybe my secondhand information was missing something.
Here’s the reply I received.
Sounds like I’m right 😦
That spawned a twitter thread with more surprised/frustrated/disappointed people.
Then at least a couple people, including myself, got blocked!
Part of me finds it funny, but it also makes it hard for me to believe they want to keep me as a customer.
While writing this post, Karma published this explanation of the grandfather program. For the first time, I’m hearing I can continue to access my data without a monthly fee. We’ll see… maybe I’m not completely robbed.
Funnily, I didn’t get the tweet where they posted this because they blocked me!
For me, the Karma is a backup device. I live in an area with spotty cell service, and the device runs on a different network than my regular cell provider. It’s also great when I’m killing time during an airport layover.
But most of the time, I don’t need to use it. When I do, it’s usually only briefly so I don’t waste my precious data. It’s rare (if ever) that I’ve used $3 worth of data, so it just doesn’t make good sense to spend $3 to access it – it’s just doubling (or more) my cost.
The Karma team believes that every Refuel customer would benefit from participating in the Refuel Grandfather Program.
I’m sorry, but no. It’s not worth it.
I finally got the official announcement email:
Apparently I do get to keep my data. That’s all I really wanted in the first place.
I can only assume they’re responding to customer feedback, which I suppose is a good thing. I still wish they’d have communicated something to the effect of “we’re clarifying some details” or “we hear you, let’s work this out” … these things would have helped. While I had no interest in paying a monthly fee now, things may have changed in the future, unfortunately, they’ve lost me as a customer.
(Dear email support person, I think you were giving a decent effort but just didn’t have up-to-date or correct information. I’m sure you had to deal with a lot of angry email, I hope you have a relaxing weekend in the near future.)