My Glo Line, Windows Phone, and Glo Customer Care

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Nokia Lumia 610

Some days ago, I mentioned that my experience with my Glo SIM in every Windows Phone smartphone that I have used is that despite having an active data plan, my airtime is deducted for any internet usage. This was my experience with the HTC HD7 HTC 7 Mozart, and now with Nokia Lumia 610. In every other mobile, and with the same GloFlat settings, there was no problem.

I had also done a small experiment. One after the other, I entered in the various Glo internet settings, including Glogwap, and my airtime was still deducted from. I also deleted the APN settings totally, leaving them all blank, and my airtime was still billed. This told me one thing: this unholy union of my Glo SIM and Windows Phone was not recognising any configuration settings that I entered. Between the two, they had their mind made up about how to channel internet service to me.

Witches and wizards at work!

Two evenings ago, I had called Glo customer care to lodge a complaint. My wife, who is not a geek, was sitting by when I made the call. The rep who spoke with me kept on and on about how it is not possible that I have the correct settings and my airtime would be depleted instead. No explanations could help her. She had been programmed to say that, and she just went on like a drone. I usually don’t do it, but I hung up on her. My wife was amazed too and commented on the ignorance on display. She actually suggested that I look for a way to get contracted to train them. Not a bad idea, I say. But permit me to stay with the topic.

This morning, I headed to my favourite GloWorld at Opebi. I was assigned a ticket. When my turn came, I explained the problem to the sweet looking lady who attended to me. She immediately concluded that hat I didn’t have the correct configuration settings – the same sentiments a reader here expressed when I first raised the subject in a recent article. The same mantra that the customer care lady on the phone had repeated. Talk of programming.

You know me. I can’t shout. I configure phones for internet usage in my sleep, and have been doing it for years – even solving cases that the networks’ reps cannot handle. If I can’t get a phone to browse correctly, chances are that it is a network issue. I can stake a year’s income on that. Anyway, I handed her the phone and asked her to take a look for herself.

She went through it and entered in what I suppose were what she thought was the correct configuration settings, then handed it back to me with the instruction that I try browsing again. I opened a couple of webpages in the browser and then checked my account balance. Twenty-something naira had disappeared from my airtime. She frowned slightly and beckoned to a colleague of hers, from whom she requested that GloDirect be de-activated on my line. That confirmed my theory about the unholy alliance between my Glo SIM and Windows Phone OS.

In the meantime, I took a quick dive into the settings of the Lumia 610 to see what different configuration settings she had put in. I wasn’t disappointed: it was the very same GloFlat settings that I had put in there by myself. D’oh!

GloDirect

Here is a breakdown of my theory. This issue will be peculiar to users who once had GloDirect service activated on their lines years ago ever before the new GloFlat settings were introduced. GloDirect offered mobile internet at lower than regular tariffs, but was pay-as-you-go. Billing was done from the user’s airtime. It appears that unless that service is de-activated, there is something about the way that Windows Phone is built that it locks on to it and uses that regardless of what other settings are entered in the device.

If you find that despite having the correct GloFlat settings on your device, your airtime is being used up when you use internet services, it is likely that you once had GloDirect activated on your line and that is creating a conflict on your line as is my case. Go to the nearest GloWorld outlet to have them take a look and where necesarry de-activate GloDirect.

Fingers Crossed

Anyway, I was informed that the de-activation should be effective within 24 hours, and on that note, I took my leave. I am keeping my fingers crossed till tomorrow morning when I will test out Glo internet usage on the device again. I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping that I do not have to pay another visit to GloWorld on this issue.

12 comments

  1. Those customer care service personnel are so incompetent. And to make matters worse, they talk at you as if they’re talking to a moron.

    Anyway, I still believe that glo’s idea of having different settings for bundled data and pay as you use, is the best way to separate your airtime from the data do that you don’t accidentally wipe out your credit thinking you’re browsing with your data bundle. It has happened to me several times on etisalat.

    Well, I’m also keeping my fingers crossed to see if deactivation of Glo-Direct solves the problem with WP8, and more importantly if you’re still able to browse on your glo SIM with Glo-Direct deactivated.

  2. My UN educated guess is that the MNC / MCC codes for GloMobile have not been updated, or are incomplete.

    See World’s Network codes

    For some reason, the GloMobile Network, when operating a WindowsPhone device, obtains an Obsolete MCC/MNC code, which then results in credit being depleted . For some reason, The Glo Network is unable to retrieve APN settings from vWindowsMobile Phones, or ignores them.

    I will bet the problem persists even if/after they disable the GliDirect settings.

    I have no income, so I would not bet that, though!

  3. Ialways have the issue too using opera mini on my blackberry with GLO, i will have to call the customer care to help de-activate GLO direct, thanks for this info

    IN OTHER NEWS, Am glad to have my MOBILTY BLOG back…and ernestly waiting for the next moilista

    1. Olamide,

      IN OTHER NEWS, Am glad to have my MOBILTY BLOG back…and ernestly waiting for the next moilista

      Yes! We are glad to be back too. Mobilista will be out in another 30 minutes or so….. tick-tock, tick-tock…

  4. My initial thought was that, maybe Windows Phone OS has inbuilt APN for most every network in the world today, though not visible to the user. When a new SIM is inserted, if the NCC and MCC are recognized as one of those in the inbuilt APN database, the inbuilt APN is used no matter what APN you key in manually. But if the NCC and MCC does not match those in the database, the one keyed in manually will be used.

    This line of thinking is based on the fact that the SIM works well with other phones. But since other networks work well on the same Windows Phone, it may appear the theory is already flawed, but when you consider that only Glo uses multiple APNs, it begins to make sense. MTN and Etisalat have maintained the same APNs ever since inception while Airtel changes are more of rebranding, even the older APN that uses zain still works.

    Why invisible? I’m not sure. But I also know that even Android APNs are largely invisible to the user save for the APNs belonging to the inserted, recognized SIM. Microsoft may chose to make the APNs totally invisible to the users for whatever reasons best known to them.

    I have also observed a similar thing with an iPhone 3GS device. It will not work with the Airtel BB Social Plan APN that is required to use the plan on other smartphones but will eat your credit instead without any visible APN configured on the device as well as work with any other Airtel smartphone plans still without a visible APN configured on the device.

  5. Feedback:

    In the last 20 minutes, I have been browsing the web, managing email and chatting on the Lumia 610 using GloBolt. I have checked my airtime about 10 times, and there has been no deductions.

    Unless, I am being taken for a ride and those deductions show up later, it is looking as if my theory is correct and having GloDirect de-activated solves the problem.

    Let me go check my airtime again….

  6. It has been 7 hours of using GloBolt on the Lumia 610, and not a kobo has been deducted from my airtime. The GloDirect de-activation worked. Thank you, GloWorld.

    Case closed.

  7. Well, maybe I should digress a little and complain about my inability to receive new posts from mobility blog on my email in spite of complying with the latest instructions.

    Your email alerts of new posts and follow up comments disappeared from my inbox long ago and looks like nothing could bring them back.

  8. This my 1st time on this blog, and I found it helpful, pls how can I manually configure MTN settings on my Lumia 920? Your prompt response will be appreciated.

  9. I tried to subscribe for airtel bb complete to be used on pc, it shows i was active but no single data is available on the Sim, is that the end of my N1,400? What can i do.

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