Thursday, October 24, 2013

Im not one to Android bash (usually just Apple)

But I call bullshit somewhere here.
Now who other than the developer would benefit from getting an army of bots or fakes to put glowing reviews, and all apparently armed with the same script.

Its a shame that some companies or organisations are hell bent on faking reviews, good or bad about apps like this. But see what you think.

I stopped at 4 pages of screen grabs, but am pretty confident that there are many more.






Want to see more for yourself... Click here to have a look at the app on the Play Store, then take a shifty through the reviews.... Page after page of the same "Thank you so much blackberry team. I was waiting this app. Its really great user friendly and smooth."

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Trouble getting started on BBM on iOS or Android ?

Well, it appears some people are waiting a very long time now for their activations to come through on their Android and iOS devices, so they can get started using BBM .

Well I just thought I would share what seems to be working for others, and has been reported elsewhere to work.

Force stop the app from the device, then restart the device, and re-open BBM. From there you should be able to re-enter your email address, and get started setting up your BBID and using BBM.
Its not my own idea, but seems to work, on Android at least. Not 100% about iOS.

To force stop an app on Android, do the following.
Go to settings
Select Applications
Select BBM from the App list
Press Force Stop on the apps page.

BBM for all.... finally!

Well , I have to say well done to BlackBerry for finally managing the rollout of BBM4ALL. After last months disaster all seems to have gone pretty well I have to say. And judging by the numbers, there has been a pretty big uptake of it cross-platform too.
I have a few friends who have reported delays in their email activation coming through, so have become frustrated and fed up with the idea of trying it out. Not a great first impression for sure. However others are managing to download it and get it rockin and rolling in no time at all.

I have been testing it myself on my Nexus 4 to see exactly how well it has ported over, and also to see the differences in services, message lag etc, and have to say first impressions are good.
With services like video call, voice call and screen sharing not available to the cross-platform users, I can understand some being a little underwhelmed by it, and why they are left wondering why everyone goes on about BBM so much.

But at the same time, with some friends who have previously used BBM now being able to get back on it, and instantly preferring the experience to that of Kik or Whatsapp, BBM have proven they 'still got it'.
Most ex BB users will have last used BBM on an OS7 or previous device, so will not have seen the slick revamped version of BBM until now. With new interfaces and features to get used to, even to the inexperienced eye, surely it must come across as a very mature IM service.

Time will tell how well BBM really does. With 60m users already, its not like its a totally new idea. But it will certainly be interesting to see how close to the 200m+ global users that Whatsapp currently has, BBM can actually get.

I look forwards to reading reviews over the coming weeks, and am sure they will vary widely from 'too little too late' to 'finally, amazing' with many others in between.

In the meantime, if you are one of the neigh sayers that simply says 'why do I need BBM'....... well if you are currently using ANY cross-platform IM service, why NOT try BBM and make your own mind up?

Winter is fast approaching.

Or so mu body would have you believe anyway. Aches and pains, coughs and sneezes, I'm full of them all right now. Or though then again, maybe its something to do with being in close proximity to someone with filthy self hygiene. Sneezing openly into the office, and other foul behaviour makes me cringe and feel slightly ill just at the sight of it.

That said, one thing that has changed is my reliance on public transport, and more recently I have driven into work. So I am sure I am avoiding a whole bunch of germs on there. Not sure I could handle it right now. So I am left dosed up and feeling slightly sorry for myself, and just wanting my duvet.

Meanwhile in the real world, the house in Wales is officially marked as 'under offer' on the website, and has been removed from the listings. This is Week 5 of the legal side of the sale since the offer was accepted. Frustratingly slow, I now feel for people who go through this again and again. And even more so for those who get caught in a chain sale, wondering every day if one of the links will break. Fingers crossed it wont be too much longer now.
I haven't heard from the solicitor or agent since accepting, but as they say, no news is good news. That said, I am ever so curious about how things are progressing, what stage we are at, etc. But the idea of contacting them seems like I would cause myself some bad luck or something.

In other walks of life, for some reason I have been doing a lot of thinking about Sian recently. Possibly brought on by the troubles of other friends and their relationships with their children. Or maybe its just 'that season', who knows. Either way, the thoughts are nothing I would act on, just a whole bunch of random memories, milestones I have missed, and curious of her thoughts (although unlikely to be having many I guess).

As the sale of the house approaches completion, my mind is all over the place with lots of financial matters, trying to balance the books until completion arrives, planning what to prioritise on getting done in life and on the house, and getting my affairs in order. Over the last week I have cancelled no less than THREE contracts with Orange, some might say I had too many in the first place, but others understand the logic behind it, in its own twisted way. As well as getting other financial affairs under control also. Feels somehow empowering to finally take control, every once in a while.

Birthdays, Christmas and anniversaries all roll around, some require attention, others just take my concentration for a moment to think them over. But all together, this time of year keeps my mind busy. Speaking of minds... I caught an episode of 999 Whats your emergency last night, which mostly focused on mental health, and wow did it strike a chord with me.
Now I don't claim to have suffered from schizophrenia, nor have I been in a dire mental state, but I have most definitely suffered with depression. So seeing how people cope, and don't cope with their feelings and thoughts was a real eye opener for me. Its television like this that really moves me, and makes me wish more people understood what it was like to be in such a desperate mental state.

For me, my defining moment was a bad one, finally reaching breaking point, and losing all sense of control over my thoughts. Reaching that point is bad enough, but doing it a in another country, with limited support, and being the weak link in what was meant to be a fun time... Not great.
Far away from my GP, off my meds, and drowning in thoughts and emotions (not self pity) was such a horrible feeling, and thankfully for me, only short lived.
So my thoughts and heart go out to those who truly suffer on a daily basis with mental health issues. Not out of control over emotional drunks, or attention seekers, but people who truly have no control over it, and wish just for one day of normality.

The UK has a lot to learn about these cases, and the normal people out there would benefit from realising that some people are not just playing up, not crazy, and don't want to hurt anyone. But they are fighting an inner demon who fights them for control over their mind and body on a daily basis.

Phew, deep thoughts for this time of day... I need chocolate.!

Thanks for reading.

At least someone is replying !

Thank you to the Financial Ombudsman for taking the time to review my email and get back to me with a case number regarding my complaint against Wonga.com

Dear Mr Snasdell

Your complaint

Thank you for contacting us. We will reply as soon as possible – but within six weeks.

If you need to get in touch before then, please use your reference, XXXXXXXXXXX

In the meantime, Wonga have still not managed to overcome sending me the same perpetual automated replies, asking me to call them, or asking for more information so they can work out who I am.

Well we have established one thing for sure.... My name is NOT Stephen! Idiots!



I don't really expect much from Wonga, at best, the next email I get with my name on it will probably be this time NEXT month saying they have screwed up again and my payment has failed again !

Monday, October 21, 2013

Southwark Council, sort it out !

Seriously, the spot I am referring to in the email below has been a joke for a LONG time now, constantly covered in bird faeces, and occasionally jet washed to a seriously slippery finish. Just stop the birds from nesting up there, then the problem is over with surely?

I will get some pics of the said spot in the dry and better lighting when I can to show what I mean, but for now, I am aching and am unimpressed with the state of the pavement. Thanks for falling over into bird crap !

I am writing to you today regarding a fall I have taken on one of your pavements on Southwark Park Road at the junction of Raymouth Road opposite Drummond Road.
The cause of the fall was purely down to the build up of bird faeces on the pavement causing the surface be be very slippery. As I began to slip I tried to catch myself, causing what I can only describe as a cartoon slip on the spot before finally falling to my knees.
While this might sound slightly amusing, it has caused me a great deal of distress both mentally and physically. It is humiliating to take a fall like that in public, without the addition of then having to continue my journey covered in bird faeces.
In the fall I have strained the muscles in my neck and shoulder, caused scuffs on both my hands, as well as getting faeces on my trousers, trainers, hands and bag.
(pics attached)
I have seen on a number of occasions that crews jet wash the pavement, however this build up is quite a lot so indicates it has been a while. And even after the attempted clean up, the pavement remains very slippery.
Walking under this rail bridge is always an interesting affair, wondering if you will be bombed by the pigeons above. So it bothers me a great deal that so little has been done to prevent them from settling there. Other bridges have had successful netting work carried out.
So, today I am left with my clothing covered in bird faeces, sore hands, and a tight neck and shoulder, all thanks to the poor efforts of a council in maintaining their pavements. I look forwards to hearing back from you soon with a sensible solution to this matter.
Yours painfully





***UPDATE**

Great reply from Southwark Council on Twitter.
Build up of bird droppings under railway bridges we usually jet wash once a week. TFL are responsible for the netting.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Are Wonga just taking the piss now?




Just got this automated template again!
But this time with a twist.
I'm positive they are just taking the piss now!!


Dear Steven,

After reviewing your email, it seems clear the best way to get this matter sorted is over the phone. 

Please call us on 020 7138 8331. We look forward to discussing your account and trying to help find a solution for you.

Who the FUCK is Stephen ?

More Wonga bullshit.

For the third time now, in the past couple of days, Wonga have sent me another automated reply, this time saying all is well. Still unable to get a human to look at the problem, they simply persist in sending automatic, template responses, answering nothing.

Obviously by them saying this I could be led to believe that my payment went through ok on the 18th, and in turn assume that the unauthorised payment was an extra payment they had no right to take?

Of course, if a human just took 5 mins to look at the account and explain it to me in an email it would all make far more sense, and be clearer, but no. Seemingly it's not the Wonga way!

Wonga, you continue to be a cause of stress and frustration in my weekend, so please once and for all, read the damn email I sent you, address the questions and give me a straight answer.

Oh and one more thing, that script you give the outsourced call centre..... When a customer phones up distressed and angry that YOU have failed to take a payment.... scripting the agent to ask 'so how is your day going so far' is a bit fuckin retarded! #JustSayin! 

So here is the template you can expect to receive when Wonga mess up, then you try to sort it out...

Hi Michael,Thanks so much for your patience while we were checking your account. Your payment was received and your plan remains in good standing. We really do appreciate you keeping your word. The status of your arrangement can be viewed, and payments can be made anytime, by logging into the 'my account' area of our site. To avoid any hiccups, please make sure your debit card information is up to date. If you know of any potential problems, please call us on 0207 138 8331 asap.Best wishes, Collections Team

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Dear Wonga.... you utter muppets!

So, if you had not already guessed, my previous blog entry was referring to ... WONGA.COM. Those happy little people that are great when all is going well, and I have had good dealings with before. But when anything goes wrong, they are simply UTTER SHIT !

3 months the issues have dragged on for now, with them not even being able to arrange one single monthly payment from my account without sending me shitty emails telling me how they are going to systematically drain my bank account over the next day if you dont call them immediately. And if you DO call them, the agent will just take an unauthorised payment anyway, so its lose lose suckers !

So after saying in my email I didnt want a templated response from them, and would like the matter looked at properly, this is the insulting shit they send.

Hi,
 After reviewing your email, it seems clear the best way to get this matter sorted is over the phone. 
Please call us on 020 7138 8331. We look forward to discussing your account and trying to help find a solution for you.
You may also find you can get things sorted by using the options in the ‘my account’ area of our site.
Best wishes,
Hi,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, HI !! are you fuckin kidding my. My email signature has my name on it, my account has too, hell, even your threatening little YOU FAILED email has my first name on it, but now im 'Hi' FUCK OFF !!!

From this point in, everything goes public, nothing is a secret, and yes, I fucked up and used a pay day loan company, my bad! lol.

Wonga, your customer 'care' is an utter disgrace, disorganised, ill informed, poorly trained, and a complete polar opposite of the experience you offer when tempting people into taking loans with you.
I can see now why so many organisations have targeted you, and understand fully the stories that people like Sky News have run.

Shame on you !


Disgusted!

After a running battle with a financial company, that shall remain nameless for now, I am finally at my wits end with it all. I have just sent them the most balanced email I possibly could at this time. Right now I am full of anger and contempt with them for the way they are behaving, and can understand why they have come under such intense fire from the media over recent months.

I am of course going to follow up this matter, and forward it to anyone who might like to take a bite out of them, as well as the financial ombudsman and maybe a few media outlets, given their unauthorised activity on my bank account today.

VERY ANGRY RIGHT NOW !!

As my letter and blog writing skills show, im mind is not my own right now.


Dear Sir / Madam
I have just come off the phone from one of your agents after having probably THE worst customer 'care' ever. I am outraged at the events on the phone, as well as how your company has behaved over this matter. I therefore wish to advise you of my intentions to approach the Financial Ombudsman with this complaint.
Please see below the catalogue of errors which has lead to this issue.
A few months (payments) back my debit card was changed. Forgetting to advise yourselves, I rightfully received an email saying my payment had failed, and that I needed to call. I did so, and made payment there and then, as well as giving my details and authorisation for future automated payments to be taken.
Last month I received an email saying it had failed again. So I phoned up only to be told they could not check anything or change anything as the computer systems were down, and to try calling back later. Which I did.
I was then told that the payment had gone through fine, the email was an error, and all would be well THIS month.
Well, yesterday I received an email saying my payment had failed yet again. Not having time to stay on hold as the wait was a long time, I emailed, to which I received no response. Today I received an email saying the payment had failed, the plan was cancelled and that an attempt would be made to take the full amount tonight.
Let me just take that last email for a second and try and work this out. Your system and my bank for some how doesn't allow you to take 10% of the sum owed, so somehow the logical thing to do is to use the same system and bank details to take 100%. That makes sense doesn't it!
So, I have called your call centre again today, and this is where my biggest issue really starts. The scripted drone that I spoke with advised me that your systems were running very slowly today, so getting my details up would take a while, while waiting she asked me various security questions, and details of the existing arrangement and payments. While doing so she enquired about the agreement amount, which I told her of. Shortly after she asked for the last 4 digits of the card being used, and the security code, which I also told her. After a short pause she said 'ok that payment has gone through today'. I enquired what payment she meant, was the system showing the same as last month and had in fact collected payment. No she replied, the payment I just requested...
This is appauling that without so much as 'would you like me to try and collect a payment from your card now' or similar, she authorised herself to take payment on behalf of your company. Therefore I protest at this unauthorised payment being taken from my account in this way, and will be formally advising the financial ombudsman of my experience with yourselves. From what I see in the media, im sure it will just be one of many.
Falling into financial hardship is bad enough, without complete jokes of companies like your own behaving in the way you do.
On the ending of the conversation she also advised me that she had set up a payment plan that would come out on the 18th of each month from Nov. Once again, please accept this as my notification of intent towards your company. IF the payment fails for any reason other than fault of my own, and I receive the same automated email threatening to systematically milk my account of every penny you can, I will immediately cancel payment and willingly forfeit the settlement, with the explicit intention of taking legal action.
For the whole time, I have maintained my side of the agreement, but on a monthly basis you fail on your side time and time again, with escalating incompetence.
I expect this matter to be thoroughly investigated, and for a completely human typed, non templated response to be sent to me explaining the actions of the agent today, and explaining why oh why something as simple as this cannot be maintained.
I really hope this matter can be resolved properly once and for all.
Thank you sincerely for ruining the start to my weekend.
Michael Snasdell
PS, this letter is being published on my blog at the same time of sending. The company name has been withheld at this point out of common courtesy. 


**EDIT**
In a hilarious twist, the company concerned have just replied to my email, stating they cant find a record of me, and for me to supply more information for them to be able to help me. I wonder if they have 'lost' my account finance information too, I doubt it eh !