Ooredoo's Sneaky Advert Placement

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Let's be honest here.  Who else is annoyed with these pop-up advertisements Ooredoo keep sending?  Its not the advertisements per say that I have a problem with, but the way they're displayed.  Accidentally clicking the SEND button (believe me, just swiping to unlock your phone can do it!) instead of CANCEL subscribes you to whatever service is being advertised.  There are no further messages sent for confirmation and your balance is deducted immediately.  

Day before yesterday, I must have accidentally subscribed to one of their nonsense services, but I didn't realize this until I received an SMS and I noticed a deduction in my mobile balance.  The SMS of course was in Arabic, which doesn't make sense as I'm sure Ooredoo takes note of what language we prefer in their system.  

Anyway, called customer care and demanded to know why I had been charged and I was told that I'd subscribed to a service.  As if!  I told them that I hadn't, but the customer care staff insisted I'd sent them a message and that if I wanted to log a complaint, I could only do so at the Head Office!  I got the service cancelled immediately and requested Ooredoo to block further advertisements to my mobile.  After all, my girls use my mobile often and I didn't want this to happen again in the future.  Despite the block, I still received the above advertisement the very next day!  Aaaargh!

I don't need tips on health or finance and I sure as hell do not want any updates on famous personalities, sports, horoscopes or even the news.  Ooredoo, if you want to advertise special services, send them as text messages with an option to reply if we're interested and not as sneaky popups!

Yesterday my husband started noticing that his balance was being deducted slowly.  Called up Ooredoo's call centre and lo and behold, he's also been unknowingly subscribed to some sort of service.  Now the weird thing is that he didn't even get an SMS notifying him that he has been subscribed and he hasn't been receiving whatever service it is that he was subscribed to.  On complaining, the customer care staff unsubscribed him, but again, no SMS notifying him of the cancellation.

The staff was rude, arrogant and when my husband asked to speak with the supervisor, he was just put on hold indefinitely!  Come on Ooredoo, you shouldn't randomly subscribe customers to services that they neither requested for or don't want.  And you should definitely whip your staff into shape.  This sort of behaviour is unacceptable!

One year later and this is still happening and I'm no less frustrated.  Called up Ooredoo again and they told me that they can block all messages, but this will include SMS received from banks.  I gave them the OK in the hopes that this would solve the pop-up issue.  Well, 3 days later and no more SMS messages from brands, which is sad because I'm no longer informed about sales (shopoholic problems!), but I am still getting the annoying pop-ups.  Called up again right now and the staff told me to install an ad-blocker.  Why don't the staff get it?  I'm not talking about adverts popping up in my browser, I'm talking about adverts popping up when I'm on my home screen!  Aaaaaah!  Are they really this clueless?  Or has Ooredoo told them to play dumb whenever a customer calls up to complain?  

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  1. Tell me about it! I purchased a portable router from them and after a month, the internet connection started getting horrible. The speed was terrible and on complaining multiple times they insisted on me going to a branch where technical team would assist me. And the best thing they could tell me is that the area i live doesn't have good reception hence the slow service. So i should now relocate just to use the router?!! Terrible service and is a complete rip off!

    1. Oh no! You'd think one of the first questions they would ask you would be where you lived so that they'd be able to advise you better! That's just taking advantage of you. Not cool at all.

  2. So, I am not alone who is annoyed by it. Well, I found one solution for that. Subscribe to XPAT1 package which is monthly 6 KD and we can get 200 mintues local calling, 20 mins international calling, etc. I mean it is good enough.

    Once subscription is finished. Maintain balance as less as possible. They cannot subscribe if there is no balance. :-P

    1. Hi Varun! Haha, that's what I pretty much do now too. After countless calls to Ooredoo trying unsuccessfully to get them to block the pop-up messages, I just walk around with very little balance on my mobile and only recharge when its time to renew my monthly package. My husband reckons this won't work and that they'll just keep it as an outstanding charge which they'll claim the next time I recharge. I hope that won't be the case!

  3. These pop ups are the worst! I get the same pop ups till date.Its extremely annoying. Tried Ooredoo Customer (Don't)Care, and i still get these pop ups even after they said they took care of it!
    I think they need to provide refunds for these pop ups or else it will keep happening.

    1. Oh I can feel your pain! These advertisements should be sent as text messages and not these annoying pop ups. For some reason they've stopped for me. I'm not sure if its the fact that I only recharge when my data and call package is going to be renewed so I pretty much have zero balance for them to deduct from, or if its all the complaints and they finally decided to heed to mine. But Ooredoo really needs to change their system and eradicate these annoying pop-ups.