Hi @TheWolf ,
The Virgin shutdown caused a bunch of hassle for a lot of people (no doubt Optus lost a lot of customers in the process). But just to be clear there was never any policy that forced people onto leasing plans. It may have been heavily spruiked (as someone else mentioned they were heavily marketted as 'cheaper' plans.)
My impression of leasing plans is that they are actually very binding contracts. Much more inflexible than standard Optus contracts. Essentially you are signing up to rent a phone for a full 24 months. Regular contracts usually just have a relatively small exit fee if you want to cancel, but lease contracts just charge you the full 24 months (and more) if you cancel early making that an impractical option.
So signing up locks you into a minimum two year payment term that guarantees Optus a good revenue stream (and they get to keep the phone to boot). Seperate from the lease is the Optus Flex option (all Optus plans have this option). It enables customers to ditch up to 12 months of their lease - so Optus is actually only gaining one extra contract year if you take it up. The $99 fee is actually called an "Early Upgrade Fee" and only applies (I believe) if that's what you do - upgrade before the 24 months is up.
So anothe way to see it is as an optional fee providing access to a pretty valuable benefit (a brand new phone with only one year contract extension). From Optus point of view the per year profit of people that take this option up goes down I believe. Compare a two year contract with one phone returned to a three year contract period with two phones returned.
I do agree that given leasing plans give Optus a huge profit (being essentially identical to an own your own phone plan but Optus gets to own the phone) you'd think Optus could afford the early upgrade option could be free for those on a leasing plan. But I'm sure they've done the numbers and skimming an extra $100 from the customer is better than a kick in the teeth (for them that is)
I agree, I really don't think that leasing is such great deal and I feel I was sold a pup when I entered a leasing contract and wouldn't have recommended it to anyone. I fail to see why we get penalised in wanting to leave a lease early when they have basically cancelled the whole lease program.
When I went with this plan, your sales rep advised that we can own this phone after two years by paying around $100. Now it’s mentioned that after two years make an offer at a fair market value. This is not fair not telling what the value will be to own the phone. It will very disappointing if the value is more than $100.
Although it depends on what phone it is (what is it?) its unlikely to be less than $350. Just google "refurbished [model] [memory]" and you should get a rough idea of the expected price.
Perhaps you misunderstood the $100 representation? (its coincidentally around the same amount as the upgrade fee for getting a new replacement phone) But the sales person was either mistaken or being misleading if that's what they said. Technically all representations about a product service at the time of sale count and you should be able to enforce them. Unfortunately in practice saying that someone told you something two years ago probably is hard to get enforced.
Please do us all a favour and stop clogging up this thread with your unhelpful replies whilst pretending to be an Optus rep. We are voicing our dissatisfaction with Optus’s actions and if you weren’t effected by them, that’s great for you. Stop belittling people who have clearly been fcked over by Optus who just want this RESOLVED and released from our PATHETIC PLANS.
You raise good argument and reasoning, however for a company that grossed around $8.1 Million dollars in 2018, I do believe foregoing $99 for contract renewal and upgrade to a new plan, and this seeing me as an ongoing customer for the next two years is a small price to pay for my ongoing patronage as a Optus customer and ongoing profit generation to the company in the bargain.
Don't think a single considered response to various posts is 'clogging' or 'flooding'. I've never suggested I'm an Optus Rep (to the contrary actually). I also haven't "belittled" anyone. I 100% agree Optus leasing plans are an extremely bad deal and I've been trying to hold them to account for them for several years. That said, their decision to stop offering the plans in the future appears completely upfront and within the terms of the contract (But that's just my opinion - the TIO, Optus, etc. might decide otherwise.).
I can't control what Optus does, but I can perhaps offer some options and a different perspective. To use your vernacular, you were being fked over by Optus. You are actually now in a much better place than before. But its human nature to keep supporting an original bad decision even after it becomes apparent - you still want to go back to the way things were.
If you want to voice your dissatisfaction then have at it. But focus on Optus perhaps? For another go, I would ask just make couple of simple suggestions, as your situation is not as bad as you make out. I'd offer the following points:
1) Many people signed leasing plans. Yes they were bad value (and Optus should be taken to task for them) But signing the contract does mean obligations (and before you say it Optus are fulfilling their contractual obligations).
2) An person taking up an Optus leasing contract would need to renew for over a decade before they broke even with a standard Optus contract. (Actually that's only if both individuals upgraded their phone every 12 months. If a person on a standard Optus contract upgraded every two years then they would be many thousands of dollars ahead after 10 years)
3) In most cases people appear to equate Optus cancelling the renewal of "lease" contract with the inability to keep upgrading their phone every 12 months for a new model. This is not the case.
4) This time around Optus has raised its plan prices. This affects all its customers. Whether Optus kept or got rid of "leasing" plans people on leasing plans would be paying the increased prices anyway (a lease in no way guarantees some perpetually low price forever, and all lease renewals involve agreeing to a brand new contract for 24 months)
I'd be happy for you (or any reader) to take my comments to task. Just something specific that I can revise, refute or even apologise for. Optus can chime in anytime with an official announcement, although they've already done that with their last official announcement (i.e. so far the situation has already been resolved). But if have no interest just click on my name and select Block User.
Hi @Jake88 ,
Refer my response to @Charlotteupton . I've just made a single considered reply to various posts, hardly a flood. I've never posed as anything other than a fellow customer. If you're waiting for another official response from Optus then I can't do anything about the timing of that.
Yep Optus is definitely profitable. I understand your point but for me the prices a company chooses to charge are a business decision for the company to take. If people don't like it then they can move elsewhere. What aggrieves me is some of the approaches Optus has put in place that essentially guarantee a percentage of their customers will be much worse off without realising it. Be it excess usage charges, global roaming, Premium SMS scams or leasing contracts that lock you into unrealised consequences the net effect is that Optus is looking after the bottom line before the welfare of the customers paying that bottom line.
All I'd ask for is a look 'em in the eye and shake my hand contract. Not the ill will that generates threads like this because people feel duped and taken advantage of.