What do you guys know about CREDO Mobile?

CREDO Mobile logoChecking the mailbox the other day I found an envelope from CREDO Mobile — a company I’ve never heard of before — that has the following question right on the front: Is your cell phone supporting right-wing causes?

I hadn’t thought about it before, but I assumed it probably did seeing as the wife and I currently use AT&T. Mainly because it used to be Cingular until they got bought out and we just hadn’t bothered to look into alternatives yet. I’ve written blog entries critical of AT&T in the past so it’s not like I’m particularly beholden to the company, but the switch was pretty transparent and there haven’t been any developments to piss me off and make me consider switching so we just haven’t done so.

As an interesting aside, the blog entry I linked to is about AT&T’s TOS for their Internet service which, back in 2007, said they could terminate your service if you said anything bad about it. I didn’t use AT&T at the time, but I do today as I have their U-Verse service because the only other alternative here in Ann Arbor is Comcast and I hate the latter more than the former at the moment.

Anyway I open up the letter to find the following:

Dear Fellow Progressive,

ls your mobile phone company supporting right-wing politicians? You might be surprised to know the answer.

AT&T not only contributed the legal maximum to Bush-Cheney, it also recently gave $1 million to the George W. Bush Foundation to help pay for the Bush Presidential Library. AT&T is also the top contributor to the members of the House Tea Party Caucus, a veritable rogue’s gallery of representatives trying to abolish nearly every environmental safety and consumer protection law on the books.

If you’re a customer of Verizon Wireless, you should know they have contributed to Senator Tom Coburn (R—Okla.), who has called for the death penalty for doctors who performs abortions. (See our chart on the back for more examples.)

But the good news is that your cell phone can support the progressive causes you care about. ln fact, at CREDO Mobile we put your cell phone to work for the progressive organizations you help choose!

Now I’d be lying if I tried to claim that this didn’t catch my attention. Sure, on some level I’m aware that AT&T and Verizon contribute heavily to the Republican party for the obvious reason that the Republicans are much more friendly to Big Business™, but I hadn’t really considered the idea of voting with my pocketbook in some way. Hell, I didn’t know it was an option.

So I kept reading:

CREDO Mobile is brought to you by Working Assets. In addition to providing great phone service, we fight tirelessly on our members’ behalf for progressive causes.

Since 1985, CREDO has delivered over $65 million to nonprofit groups like the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, Natural Resources Defense Council and Doctors Without Borders. We’re also the only mobile phone company as committed to the planet as you are. We were the first to offset the carbon emissions for every phone we ship and we print our bills on 100% post-consumer recycled paper. In fact, unlike any other phone company, we plant 100 trees for every ton of paper we use.

Plus, we offer everything you’d expect from a first-rate carrier, and switching to our comprehensive service couldn’t be simpler. With CREDO Mobile, you get:*

  • Contract buyout credit (up to $200 each for a total of three lines) and your choice of phone
  • 25% off your monthly service fee for a year
  • Special deals like 1,000 anytime minutes plus 1,000 texts for just $59.99 per month, and our new smartphone powered by Android™, the HTC Hero™ with Google™, for $79.99
  • All calls carried on the nationwide Sprint® network, reaching more than 280 million people
  • No contract for the first 30 days**
  • Free shipping
  • Ability to keep your current phone number
  • Friendly customer service representatives standing by to answer all your questions

And, of course, you’ll also get the things that only CREDO Mobile can give.

For instance, part of your bill will be donated automatically, at no extra cost to you, to dedicated nonprofit groups you help select. And you”ll be part of our highly effective citizen lobbying program. We’ll send you alerts on issues of urgent concern to the progressive community and provide easy ways to take action.

With a president proving to be more centrist than his campaign promises, and with the clamor ofthe tea party on the rise, we can’t afford to slack in our fight for reform. We can enact a progressive overhaul of this badly damaged nation, but only if we use all of the resources at hand. And that includes our cell phones.

Sound pretty good doesn’t it? Of course that didn’t stop my skeptical nature from raising a few red flags starting with the fact that I’ve never heard of this company before. And, judging from the Google search I did of the company, not a lot of other people have heard of them before either as there are a lot of articles with similar titles to the one I’m writing now. Checking in on some of them gives you a mixed bag of opinions. Some folks say they suck and others say they’re great, but there doesn’t appear to be much of a consensus.

The other red flag that popped up is the fact that they criticize AT&T and Verizon, but not Sprint. You probably noticed in the bullet points that they’re carried on the Sprint network which probably explains why they don’t bash that company. Near as I can figure they’re just reselling Sprint cellphone service and it’s not like Sprint Nextel doesn’t give its fair share of contributions to the Republicans. So the suggestion that this would effectively redirect your money toward progressive causes is slightly misleading. Spring Nextel is still going to get some of your cash and they’ll use part of it to donate to Republicans. Still I suppose some of your money going towards progressive causes is better than none so long as the rates you’re paying aren’t too much higher than they would be if you just signed up for Sprint Nextel service directly.

I’ve been reading through some of the stuff about CREDO I’ve found via Google while typing this up and it sounds like some folks are quite happy with them while others are having various levels of problems. One thing is for sure, there are a lot of Liberals out there who appear to be very eager to support companies that share their progressive values. So much so that one has to wonder if we’re not ripe for abuse by companies who see an opportunity to milk a niche market. Being a natural cynic is why I’m leery of this offer.

So I figured I’d ask you guys if you know anything about this company. Have you used them before? Do you use them now? Are you satisfied with the service? Do they really live up to their promise of supporting progressive causes? Have you heard anything about them that would give you reason not to sign up? Or are you as clueless about them as I am?

88 thoughts on “What do you guys know about CREDO Mobile?

  1. Subscribing to this thread because I am very curious about Credo. I started seeing ads for them about 2 years ago, I think – but I still have a year’s service on my TracPhone so I’m not in a hurry. Even if they are just reselling Sprint access it could be a better redirection, provided they’re on the level.

  2. Have never heard of them.
    Having been in SW Michigan last weekend, I will say that the SPRINT network is not as “nationwide” as promised. I had only one signal bar as soon as the IL/ IN border, and nothing at all in Michigan. Ran the battery down doing the roaming.

  3. I’ve been getting ads from them for several months, so I’m kind of curious, too. I’m glad you cleared up one issue (they’re reselling Sprint service).

    I have to wonder, though — given that the Sprint money will essentially be going to (we assume) evil purposes, doesn’t it just make as much sense as choosing your preferred (evil) mobile carrier, and make direct (tax-deductable) contributions to the ACLU (etc.)?

  4. Once upon a time Credo was known as Sprint Working Assets, a long distance carrier, then as Working Assets, and then Credo – all landline based. They donate 10% of your LD charges to various charities that were voted on by the customers. I was very pleased with their service – they went above and beyond helping me to straighten out a hideous problem with Verizon. As Working Assets, they were highly recommended by various progressive organizations.

    I would assume that their mobile service is operated the same way. No idea how the quality is, tho.

  5. By the sounds of things Credo will be a MVNO – Mobile Virtual Network Operator. Your contract is with Credo and you pay money to Credo, and when you turn your handset on it will say Credo, but Credo will buy wholesale capacity on Sprint Nextel’s network so some of your money will go to Sprint.

    It will be a similar arrangement to Virgin Mobile who buy wholesale capacity from Sprint (in the US) and T-Mobile (in the UK).

    Not sure if this will apply to you, but because Sprint is a CDMA-based network, if you travel outside the US (especially in Europe) your phone probably won’t work. AT&T use GSM and UMTS which are available in more countries.

  6. I’ve had them for a few years now and I’m quite pleased. When my contract came up for renewal they actually called and offered to lower my rates. Who does that anymore?

    There are some caveats though. I use a fairly basic phone and a simple plan (I don’t need or want a “smart phone”). I don’t text or use the mobile web. So my rates were low even before the deal they cut me on renewal.

    Some people have complained that once you add on stuff like text plans, web plans and other stuff it can get pricey (some other carriers wrap all of that into one packages, which ultimately ends up lower than CREDO’s total). I’ve also been told their phones aren’t necessarily cutting edge.

    So you might want to compare the phones they have and the plans they offer to see if they have what you want. If they do there’s no reason not to sign on, since you’ll know you’re supporting good causes with your money.

  7. I would have no problem switching to them and have considered it but I have four lines and the early cancel fees would kill me, and their per month charges would be higher than I’m paying now.

    But the cost difference was less than I expected and they have recently started offering some Android and Blackberry devices so FINALLY they are an option for people needing a smartphone.

    If I didn’t have existing service, or if I were having issues with my current provider I’d use Credo in a heartbeat.

    I say that with the caveat that for people with very basic needs or who use very few minutes/texts, prepaid options like straight talk and trackfone can be much cheaper.

  8. I had signed progressive petitions circulated by CREDO during the 2008 election season so I’ve been getting emails from them ever since trying to sell me on a phone plan. Unfortunately, I did the same research you did, and Sprint’s service in our area is spotty at best, so we’re going to skip it for now. But I do have a couple of friends who are with CREDO and they never complain about their cell phone carrier, so they must be reasonably all right.

  9. We’ve been using Credo since it was Working Assets. Initially, we just had it for long distance, but they started offering cell (and we got tired of crappy Verizon service) we switched to them.

    No real problems. Coverage (in L.A. area) is better than we had with Verizon and we like the causes they donate to (they round up your bills to the nearest dollar and donate the “extra” to those causes). They have had (at least, until recently) a fairly sparse choice of phones, but that wasn’t a problem with us as we were just using basic cell phone services.

  10. I forgot to mention–I’d been with Verizon before I switched to CREDO. With Verizon I had coverage issues even before moving to CA (both with phone and my broadband). Once I moved to CA my phone coverage became really sketchy and my broadband almost useless. So when CREDO sent me an offer I was already shopping around. Since the change I’ve had no problems at all with coverage (phone only, as I mentioned above) no matter where I am.

  11. Very interesting. My mom was convinced and switched. What you say about renting bandwidth out from Sprint is perfectly correct, but not really surprising. Over the last coupla decades, SBC Sprint and ATT invested billions in infrastructure. Sprint owns most if not all the PCS bandwidth frequency, and hundreds of thousands of miles of fiber optics, particularly the big backbones that run between data centers, telcos, etc. in cities; so, its not really surprising. Theres not much one can do. Its sort of like airlines. Nobody can just go start an airline, the upfront cost for the airplanes is massive. By the same token, no one can just go out and start laying cable and make a new infrastructure-sized (physical )network, for many obvious reassons, not the least of which is that it really only workeed under monopolistic conditions, with gov help/subsidies. The infrastructure before the 80’s in america was almost exclusively ATT and Bell telephone. The transatlantic links are still ATT. In fact the link from california to asia is owned by ATT (the “secret room” wiretap situation? remember?), and simply *everybody* has to use it.

    So, with those background restrictions and realities being what they are, I think this is about the best one could expect to be able to do if one was interested in where one’s telephone company’s profits went.

    ….it does, however, as you pointed out, sound all very suspiciously like a marketing ploy, and of course, in asense, it has to be, since it is, after, a business and not a charity to provide telecommunication services.

    Is communication a “commons” however? Do we have the “right” to access comm. infrastructure?

  12. Sorry about the numerous typos, I tried to edit it, but…well, you know that Ajax comment edit box still wont work on my computer. 🙂

  13. Interesting, I just checked the homepage for the comment edit plugin we’re using and it appears it’s gone commercial. There have been several releases that may or may not fix the problem some of you are having. It’s only $5, but I’d hate to spend it and find that it still gives some of you problems.

    So I’m continuing the search for an alternative. Still considering trying Disqus too.

  14. I know nothing about the company itself and can’t speak to it, but I do know Sprint now has 4g service. So you might want to look at 4g coverage in Michigan and see if a switch would be worthwhile. But Credo doesn’t have any 4g phones yet, so that wouldn’t help you yet. And the smartphones they have are old. That Hero is already almost a year old, I know I bought one for my wife, yet they list it as “new”. Not to mention the Hero came out in other markets outside the US before Sprint got it. So technically the Hero is over a year old.

    For their plans, they are more expensive then Sprints plan, but Sprint does have the cheapest plans by far. I was getting $175 for two phones to get what my wife and I plus two more people all get for $160 before taxes and surcharges. So I have two more phones, all have unlimited data and texting and I was at $175 before adding two more phones to their plan. Not to mention you have to add the “smartphone” option to every smartphone you have. Whereas with Sprint, we have a data plan so we don’t pay per smartphone. In other words, probably over $200 for me to go with Credo.

    To me it makes more sense to just go with Sprint and take say 10% of the savings and put toward progressive causes yourself. The features and money you save just make sense.

  15. CREDO has been around for so long, that the only reason you’re not aware of it is probably because you either weren’t part of their community back when they were known as Working Assets, or don’t get emails from AlterNet or MoveOn.org.

    Back in the Working Assets days, these guys were Web activists with a capitalist bent – or so it seemed. But once they turned into CREDO, it’s been nothing but spam from these guys. Their service is probably just fine, but as far as activism goes they’re hard to distinguish from being just another Big Company that gives lots of money to the United Way, say.

  16. A little off topic, but, I use cricket and have done so for 7 years or so, since whent hey were new..

    Cheapest deal in town, totally unregulated minutes, (nighttime minutes, family plan, etc. all out the window)

    Just a dial ton (well, so to speak) and a 45 dollar flat monthly bill, with free nationwide roaming and free long distance.

    Completely flat-rate and unlimited. ESN switches are 15 bucks.

    They should give me a commission dammit

    I don’t know why anybody uses anything else! 🙂

  17. I’ve been with Working Assets (Credo) for over 10 years. They used to just be my phone and long distance provider and then when I got a cell phone I went with them. I have been really happy with them from the beginning. The cell phones they have are a bit limited but my latest phone, htc hero, is great so it hasn’t been a problem for me.

    Their bills are fascinating. Not only do they donate part of their profits to charities we select, they put current issues and the lawmaker to contact for each issue. You can have them send a letter to the lawmaker for you. They have a Facebook page if you want to see more of the issues they champion.

    I love them and have been really happy. I haven’t pitched them much to friends and family but I’m thinking I should start.

  18. I’ve been a CREDO customer for years. I love that they contribute to the causes I support, and I have been delighted with their service. I just wish I could use them for my landline, too. They have a feature on each bill highlighting legislation that, as a progressive, I should be aware, and will send letters on these to my legislators on my request. They give me an opportunity once a year to decide which organizations will receive my portion of the profits made by CREDO. And they always have great books to recommend on their bill.
    I know it sounds like an ad, but they’ve treated us well, and we were able to escape AT&T, my arch nemesis. They are a business that stands for something, and there’s a lot to be said for that in this current climate.

  19. Small note: If you go to the FEC website and do the math, Sprint doesn’t contribute much money to political causes. Much, much less than AT&T and Verizon, anyway. It makes sense: they have the cheapest bills around, so they don’t have as much money to throw at politicians. It’s the “lesser of evils” question.

  20. I’ve been with CREDO for 6 years. Even back when it was Working Assets Wireless. Before that, I was a long distance customer. Now it is true that they don’t have the latest, flashiest phones. Yet, the fact that my money doesn’t eventually go to a right wing fanatic is excellent.
    I’ve been fairly satisfied with their service. The customer service reps are really cordial and nice, even when I’ve called in a stressed out mood.
    To be honest, their termination fee is paltry compared to the other big phone companies (half of Verizon’s termination fee!).
    Service costs are comparable to big phone companies, and it’s free to talk to anyone on the network. I just had my phone stolen last night, and I was actually looking around for another phone company because of the lack of newer phones. However, the more I look, the better CREDO becomes, and I think I’ll probably stick with them.
    Coverage is pretty good in metro areas (I live in Tucson, AZ); obviously the boonies have much less coverage. No problem with dropped calls on my end.
    I definitely recommend CREDO to anyone. They have a more mainstream liberal political views, but I’m alot further left wing than they profess to be. So, if I have to keep a phone, it’ll stay a CREDO phone. Also, FYI the customer rep told me that CREDO was launching some new smartphones in November, although they’re not doing a good job of advertising that fact.

  21. I’m from the Bay Area…where the company started. They’ve been around since at least 2004. They aren’t perfect, but they do a better job than the other “big dogs”. As long as it’s customers keep in tune with their business choices as thoroughly as they can, they can only improve! My collective purchases are always more of a vote than the ones I place at the ballot, so I support CREDO all the way!

  22. I’ve used Credo for years. I have better coverage than my i-phone using friends and roaming is now free which has been very helpful since I go over mountain passes a lot. Phone calls to the white house and legislators are free. I have been impressed with the emails I’ve been getting and when I don’t feel like reading them, I just delete them. I have not re-upped because they do seem to stay a couple of years behind in technology – don’t even have the latest sprint phones. When my mom was in the hospital and all of a sudden I found myself a couple hundred hours over my plan, they let me up the amount of the plan and backdate it to the beginning of the month. So I expect I will be re-upping soon.

  23. I’ve been using Credo for years (since back before they were Credo). Their rates are reasonable, and include nationwide roaming. The donate 1% of all their profits to progressive causes that customers vote on each year.

    Their bills (if you still get paper bills) are printed on recycled paper and include lots of information on progressive causes. Two presidential elections ago they made all phone calls free on election day so people could call their friends/family to remind them to vote.

    They are a bit slow in adopting smart phones, but have recently released a few android phones.

    The best part, however, is their customer service. Which is awesome. Their customer service reps are smart, knowledgeable, and empowered to help you. About a year ago when my contract renewal came up I chose not to replace my phone and instead take a monthly credit on my bill (awesome option, BTW). Two months later my foster pup ate my phone. Instead of charging me an arm and a leg for a replacement, or making me renew my contract again, they found me a re-manufactured phone for a very reasonable cost and sent it right out.

    When I got my droid phone last summer, they called about a week after to see how I liked it and if I had any questions on how to use it.

    I HIGHLY recommend these folks!

  24. I recommend avoiding Credo Mobile. Their customer service is among the worst I have ever used. If you have a technical problem with a phone you’re out of luck. They will go through some perfunctory process on the phone then tell you there’s nothing they can do about it except sell you a new phone. I signed up with them because their values seemed to match mine, but their values apparently do not extend to their customers. I live in Northern New England in an area with good cell reception from all of the major carriers.

  25. They seem extremely bogus to me. I cannot keep count of the letters they send to my home address assuming I’m also progressive (that’s true), always the letter is energy spend dissing the other guy with the exception of SPRINT, whom also lobby’s for groups they claim they are against. This seems like the biggest contradictory. The Spectrum they rent is Sprints. Which half of the time is roaming off Verizon. (note there is no guarantee that you’ll get any coverage like them, remember you paying for a rental of a rental). I would advise them not to bite the hands that feeds you, & except to get my money based on “empathy” letters that dumb down your attention span to three/four sentence rants about “evil” and end them with “Our 10% of your bill goes to PROGRESS”.

    Not trying to be cynical but that sounds like a classic tax write off, Pick your own battles but give me some truth.

  26. I switched to Credo a few months ago from Verizon because of Verizon’s anti-union activities. (Overall, Verizon’s service had been better than great.) As much as I like the idea of this company, I have to give a big thumbs-down because of their customer service. Although the people you get on the phone are pleasant enough, it takes FOREVER to get an answer from someone. The live people seem to have no clue; getting transferred to tech support is just code for being put on indefinite hold.

    All things considered, I think I’m better off making my direct donations to the non-profits and causes that speak to me, and going with a service that is more reliable, has local stores, and provides better service.

  27. I have credo, I would strong ly urge anyone not to get their service. I had a phone service nightmare when they sent me a six hundred dollar phone bill. Everythig that could go wrong with them did and they tried to make me pay the bill after charging me for four months of services I never used. A true night mare.

  28. I have used Credo Mobile for two years, but had used Working Assets Long Distance (their founding company and original name) for about 15 years. It is true that they support progressive causes. However, I remember when they were encouraging customers to get their Working Assets Visa card; it was still a Bank of America Visa card. And it is true that Credo’s cellular service is powered by Sprint, which is anything but progressive and whose coverage is at times poor-to-mediocre. I have looked around at different cellular companies for the past year, because I felt that Credo was a bit expensive, but after looking around, I found out that they are all expensive and they are all rip-offs, and Credo is just the best deal of them all. If I find someone better and less expensive, I would change. I can donate to any cause I want without their help, but if I can support a company with progressive values that provides a great service and is reasonably priced, I will. And so far, that is why I am still using Credo.

  29. We have had Credo for a LONG time – way back when it was Working Assets in fact. We are elderly and not in the best of health. We pay all our bills on time. We have made no changes phone-wise in this household for what seems like an eternity.

    So you can imagine our surprise when we picked up the phone a couple of days ago only to get a message that “your long distance service has been temporarily disconnected”.

    Just so you can fully understand the magnitude of this imagine yourself at, say, the emergency room in a crisis situation with your loved one and trying to reach any/all of your relatives who are considered long distance and hearing that recording instead on your cell phone.

    We have both spent 30 to 45 minutes each on the phone with Credo. The best they can come up with is “for some reason your name was dropped from the database. It will take 24 to 72 hours to re-connect you.” And it has taken that long. We are now in day 3 of no long distance service.

    Compensation, you might ask? Why yes, they will give us credit on our bill for the day(s) we had no long distance service. That’s it. Nothing else.

    Everyone on the phone, at least on their end, was polite and controlled but absolutely no help at all. No explanation HOW we got dropped, or WHY we got dropped. No notification of any kind whatsoever.

    Steer clear is our advice. We’re as political and environmentally concerned as the next person but Credo should spend more time and effort on helping long-time customers instead of sending endless 8 or larger page bills promoting their causes.

  30. My experience is similar to that of Christine. I was a customer of these people for over 20 years. I haven’t always paid right on time, but I’ve always paid. I’m on a very limited income, so they had my account on ‘permanent protect’ meaning, they wouldn’t shut it off for non-payment, and they always called when I was way behind and asked for payment and got whatever they required. I always particularly liked the fact that they had 24/7 customer service, and there was minimal touchtone BS before talking to a human being. That’s changed some.
    Now, there’s a new Credo in town.
    This Credo shut my service off without warning and demanded my entire arrears balance, when for over 20 years, I could make partial payments along with the other little niceties I enjoyed that I talked about. This Credo says, “Sorry, we don’t do that anymore. We never guaranteed that service.” They offered bupkus to a loyal customer as compensation for their rudeness, and to keep my business after they changed my service without warning. Wait, they did send a snail mail letter, postmarked 12/19, before shutting the service off at the stroke of midnight on January 1st. Tough luck if you’ve got other things to do at that time of year than stay home and open your mail. Regardless, the new excuse is, the “new system” computer won’t allow them to do anything except turn the service back on, if, and only if, I cough up all the money.
    Personally, I view this as a unilateral change in the terms of my service agreement, or, in the simpler language of an earlier time, they broke our contract. Which in my mind, should void any rights to an early termination fee to the party breaking the agreement.
    This is the company I was buying technology from, and they were too technologically inept to send a text message or an email before disconnecting the service of a long established customer; but they were technologically greedy enough to take away the ability of a customer service rep to actually do something other than spew hot air, and to elevate a soulless computer system to a higher level of authority than the now useless human being on the other end of the phone.
    What did they think they were holding over my head? I had no phone.
    Their elevated corporate service rep was even worse, insultingly rude and insensitive, and useless; sending me an email that showed a level of cluelessness that was truly disheartening, but by the time I got this email, I had been a Sprint customer with a live phone for over a week. Sprint, who treated me politely and professionally, and acted like they cared about having my business.
    Sprint has clearly taken a customer-oriented focus, my prior experience with them was awful, and they’ve got a whole new attitude. Unfortunately, Credo has one too, but theirs is more like, “What, you think we should be nice to you? You’re lucky we tolerate your presence in our customer ranks.” They’ve gone 180˚ in the wrong direction, at photon torpedo speed.
    Having experienced this new, crude Credo, I find the ‘progressive’ label rings quite hollow. “Progressive” people don’t treat other people the way this Credo treats its customers. Corporate “people” do.
    Go with Sprint, they’re more honest.

  31. All I can say about credo is don’t!!!. They have a good cause but service is lousy and they don’t ever really want to talk about problems. On my credo phone I sound like a phone add of yester year “Caan you here me now. It may well be just a phone set up but I can not get them to talk and beside , yesterday I called them and the call was droppedUGG!!!. Juist don’t is my advice

  32. ON CREDO YOU GET TO CHOOSE WHO YOUR DONATION GOES TO. HOWEVER YOUR DONATION IS IN ADDITION TO YOUR BILL. SPRINT DONATES TO NON PROGRESSIVE CAUSES AND YOU ARE ON THERE USELESS NETWORK. SO YOU GIVE A POOR NETWORK AND TO POLITICAL BELIEFS THAT DON’T MATCH YOUR OWN AND THEN YOU GIVE YOUR MONEY TO YOUR CAUSE. AFTER THE BILL I HAD NO MONEY FOR MY CAUSE. I have had credo for a year and a half. I am cancelling. I have unlimited text, data and talk. It comes out to 143.00 a month. I live in Seattle WA, you would think that I would get service all over the city. It claims roaming all over major cities along the west coast including Canada. I have had problems with calling 911 because it couldn’t connect. I have also had no internet access in areas like my apt. because it was roaming although half the time it works but is incredibly slow. I don’t stream video I just need to read news articles and addresses. I called to cancel and was passed around for an hour. Only to be given a bogus account number so I couldn’t switch accounts to a reliable network. The computer service didn’t recognize my number and half the time and wouldn’t let me pay my bill on time. This service (?) is a sad joke, taking advantage of those who want to make a difference. My suggestion is to get a service that works, and send a check to the cause of your choice. You will have a phone that works and feel good that you are helping the cause of your choice.

  33. I love what they stand for but they have the worst network and phones i have ever had. I have previously had Verizon, Qwest, Sprint, ATT and Virgen Mobile. Never had any major problems with my reception in my area. Then i got my credo phone and it started out OK. Within 4 months i was dropping calls both incoming and outgoing. There is no consistency with my signal and it will randomly try and roam, and it has now gotten so bad that I am not even connecting to their network. I have had a replacement phone and saw no change. Now that it is this bad i have called numerous times and finally got their rep to file a ticket. it has been over three weeks and nothing has been done. also our phones had become worthless crap we had to go out and get different phones with a different company. omg it is life changing to now have a phone that actually does what it is meant to do. Yet i am still having to call Credo at least once a week to find out whats going on, at this point all i want to do is have them cancel my contract so i don’t have to worry about paying a bill for a phone paperweight. and yet i have to wait longer so they can file a new ticket for the issue since nothing was done with the first ticket that they have now had to resubmit three times. If it where me I would not go with this company. I have had sprint service before and never had these kinda problems. Crappy network and not very good customer service.

  34. I have been with CREDO since the Working Asset days– since the late 1990s. I am ready to leave. I’m paying $135/month for 2 lines with extra texting. That’s a lot of money! We want smart phones, but the bill for me and my husband to have smart phones with CREDO would be over $200, and I don’t like the smartphone options. To boot, right now my CREDO phone is tweaking out on me. I need to call them to deal with that.

    I hate to go with one of the giants b/c their politics are awful. I think I’ll try Solavei, which as far as I can tell isn’t involved in politics. No contract, either. They just don’t have a very good deal for family plans. Truth be told, the whole thing is paralyzing me a bit, which is ridiculous and inconvenient.

  35. I switched to Credo Mobile from ATT, really hate their customer service. I became unemployed Feb 2011, unemployment ran out in 7 months & eventually could not pay their bill, $150 mo for two really crappy basic smart phones. I was paying as much as possible every month, $50-75 a month, but after about 2 months they turned it over to a collection agency!! Ruining my credit, even though I’m making regular payments!!! AND I’M STILL UNEMPLOYED!! ONLY HAVE SOCIAL SECURITY INCOME. THEY DON’T REALLY CARE ABOUT ANYTHING EXCEPT BOTTOMLINE !!

  36. My parents use credo and I’ve been on their plan before and I thought the service was pretty good. I plan on switching over again soon seeing as the current service I am with is cheaper but not as good. Since they recently upped the cancellation bill credit to $300 it makes it easier for people who have smartphones to switch over.

    The downside is that while they have free smartphones with a contract now the smartphones require a data plan and you don’t have a choice between limited data(which would be cheaper) and unlimited. You only have those choices with texting and a voice plan. They don’t have much variety in plans then, either. I text more than I use minutes and would prefer more text than minutes because of that but the limited plans for both give you more minutes. I would have to get unlimited texts which I don’t need but would have to get as a fail safe.

    All on all the service is great, the company is progressive, but the plans are limited.

  37. I spent about an hour on the phone with a sales person, who told me I’d get a big discount for the first several months. We walked through the services I wanted, and he convinced me I’d save a lot of money. Then the bill arrived. Right away, I saw a problem: the big discount I was going to get only applied to a small part of the bill, not the whole thing. It amounted to a piddly little joke. I called, and the sales person basically blew me off. “Too bad, so sad, have a nice day.” Later, my wife went to Canada, and racked up $30 in data overages on our so-called unlimited data plan. When I had asked CREDO about this before she went, I was told not to worry about it, it was covered, Surprise! It’s not! Screwed again! Eventually I compared what I was spending on AT&T to CREDO, and realized I wasn’t really saving any money, and since all they do is resell Sprint, part of my money is still going to fund the conservatives.

  38. I got Credo a couple of years ago and struggled with an LG Android and then a Blackberry and thought that once I finally got an iPhone5 the service would be good. I was wrong. With Credo I don’t really even have a “smart” phone. It has never gotten above 3G anywhere I go in Los Angeles, and on my Blackberry I had no service in most of the SF Bay Area. When I called them, they had no clue as to why. They just stay on the line quietly until you talk to yourself for a while, get bored and hang up. I’m going to switch out as soon as I can.

  39. I guess it is too much trouble for you to actually look at the political contributions of AT&T and Verizon. In the past two election cycles, both have PACs that have given to Democrats. Verizon has given about the same to Democrats as it has to Republicans. AT&T has given more to Republicans. In the last election cycle Sprint, host of Credo, gave 59% of its donations to Republicans.

    How can there still be people who think Democrats are not bought by deep pocket donors? Crony capitalism is bipartisan.

  40. As what I would call a center/right progressive with an aging Verizon iPhone 4 and a $135 per month bill, I recently attempted to establish service with Credo, replace my phone & switch carriers. I was denied based on a credit check.

    I asked to speak to a supervisor at that time & was first told that would do me no good, that a Tier One call center operator’s decision was final. My own experience with customer service tells me that the only valid response to “may I speak with a supervisor” is “yes sir” – & then with any credible pretense of service it just happens. Upon insisting, I was told that no supervisor was available. I then asked to leave a call-back message & in two week’s time that call-back never happened. After a couple of weeks I called back myself & asked to speak to a supervisor. I was told that no supervisor was available. I asked to speak with that unavailable supervisor’s supervisor, & was told that none was available. After making it very clear that I’m not the guy that will accept that, I got a contact number for the corporate office. At that time I did speak to what sounded most like a pom-pom waving cheerleader for corporate America as we’ve come to hate it, & upon asking for a moment of her own supervisor’s time was told that none was available.

    Of course I asked that a call-back message be left, & of course that call-back hasn’t happened.

    While there actually are issues on my credit report, it’s the same credit profile that allows a continuing line of credit with my longstanding FCU & various credit cards – a couple of which, subject to credit review, have been recently renewed. Further, it would have to be the same report that contains no complaints from any telecom, mobile carrier, or for that matter, any other utility.

    In the four years since I bought a stunning little BMW 325i for an equally stunning $2,000, I’ve put less than $4,000 total into that car – & it needed a transmission when I bought it. It’s a beautiful, clean & reliable car – the third in a 25 year string of beautifully maintained, clean, reliable & ridiculously cheap 3 Series BMWs. In the three years since I bought my iPhone I’ve spent $5210 on the phone with unlimited service. That’s $350 for the phone, plus $135 per month for 36 months. Prior to that it was AT&T, SBC, Ameritech, etc, on back to the days of Indiana Bell & rotary dial phones that weighed slightly more than a cinder block.

    Anybody remember when the only hardwired phone in the house could serve as a devastatingly effective weapon if needed? I do, & I’ve reliably paid for whatever phone I’ve had throughout the time since. I’m not a financially irresponsible person – I, for example & as mentioned above, don’t pay interest on too high a price for a substandard car. I think I’ve also established the ability & intent to pay a phone bill, but this “progressive” company – in it’s application of a typically regressive business model – can’t see that fact. If my own credit is worthy of denial, I’m wondering just how many other millions of people that pay their phone bills each & every month without fail are also being declined.

    A progressive company would take a look out the window & realize that we exist in an economy that inflicts damage that people do not bring upon themselves. They’d realize that while it is helping many, steps forward like the ACA don’t erase the bills that existed prior. They’d see the cost of essentials like college educations for our children escalating at a rate far exceeding the overall rate of inflation. They’d realize that entire sectors of the economy are evaporating before our very eyes. They’d realize that the exodus of manufacturing, for example, effects far more than the lowest level of factory personnel – that it also deeply effects the skilled trades & professions that support(ed) manufacturing. Seven to nine additional jobs for each factory floor job. Technicians, engineers, toolmakers – me – & many millions of others.

    A progressive business would take a look out the window & figure out how to progress within the environment they see.

    A progressive business wouldn’t conflate the issues & responsibilities that rational people compartmentalize in the course of rational economic decision making. A progressive business wouldn’t decline business with those that have demonstrated over decades time that the phone bills always get paid.

    A typically regressive company, however, would claim to be progressive for purposes of marketing & then apply the most regressive possible standard to inflexible policies regarding who they will & won’t do business with. A typically regressive business wouldn’t even discuss the issue while, at the very least, a progressive business would return a freaking phone call that, in my own case, would be answered with a reliably paid-for iPhone.

    Having said all that, I don’t even know what a rollover fee is. Maybe Verizon’s not such a bad deal after all.

  41. I share your skepticism as well. Seeing as though they do support a political pocket. Not all Democrats are by far what they seem to be. They can be bought out by lobbying too and have. Look what was hiding behind it the presidential election of 2008. All I needed to know was that. I would be much more in favor if this was an “Independent” supporter. Does some good justify the bottom line? What about the corrupted actions of the political pocket. You can’t get money out of politics if you support the system its part of. Double standard.

  42. I’ve had Credo Mobile for over two years now, I love them. They are happy to help, will listen to you & then take care of the problem. My rates are cheaper than competitors, I got a free Galaxy S4, have unlimited data, and can choose where my money goes in donations. Website is super easy to use, and if you have technical issues, they are right there to help. Credo was the best mobile move I’ve ever made. I also use my phone as a HotSpot because I can’t stand having to deal with Cox or Verizon as sole internet providers and mega-impossible to get out of contracts.

  43. We fell for their BS…

    We switched from AT&T to Credo 2 years ago (5 phones). They were offering decent deals and I liked the idea of donating to progressive causes. The first issue is coverage on the Sprint network. Voice coverage is weak and data is very slow almost everywhere. The next issue is that you can only use their phones. If you lose or destroy your phone, you can’t buy an unlocked phone and add their sim card, it has to be their phone. If you want to travel overseas, they offer virtually nothing in the way of a reasonably priced international plan.

    The contracts on all 5 phones expire either 12/24 or 12/26. We are going to be out o the country when the contracts expire, so I ported 4 of the lines over to AT&T this weekend (within the last month of the contract) and called today to cancel the 5th line (which hasn’t been used since Aug). They are charging me $475 ETF ($95 per line) when the last months bill would have been $270 (which I have no problem with paying). We don’t want to pay another month on the 5th line after the contract expires, but the only option is to call the day the contract expires. I told the customer service supervisor that that wasn’t possible and she said too bad. They can’t schedule a cancellation.

    They may spout progressive rhetoric, but they are a totally inflexible company and the apparent savings are an illusion.


  44. Interesting – I just pulled a letter from CREDO out of my mailbox. I last talked to them in July. At that time I was promised a call-back from a customer service executive. That call-back never happened. Instead of the promised call-back & after five months time, I have a letter reiterating their denial of service based on a credit check.

    So – in my view they’re reiterating their foolishness. If some (allegedly) responsible person or another from CREDO were to honor the word of those that pick up telephones & speak for CREDO, I would answer that call with a reliably paid for iPhone. Whatever difficulties I’ve experienced (& handled) financially, those difficulties have absolutely nothing to do with my clearly established ability & intent to maintain telephone service. My Verizon iPhone account is an expensive one – it’s unlimited everything with what was once the costliest cell phone on the market. I’m about to make the 42nd consecutive payment on that account. That’s 3 1/2 years preceded by another 35 years of reliably paying phone bills, 14 1/2 of which have been from my current address for which the 174th consecutive payment just cleared through checking.

    This is utterly stupid, & at the end of it I know that stupid decisions tend to exist within a context of entrenched stupidity. Given that I have no desire to do business with stupid, it’ll be any option but CREDO that gets my monthly, reliable-as-the-sunrise stream of telephone related revenue.


  45. Given that I’ve received yet another denial of service letter from a company that I’ve had no contact with since July, it’s clear that CREDO is still monitoring this 51 month old discussion thread. That original post, stroke job that it is, must’ve been one seriously expensive stroke job.

    So when you’re sending money to CREDO, this is what it’s spent on? If I recall correctly, the CREDO plan I was looking at (with a new phone) would’ve cost $95 per month. In the time since I’ve paid Verizon $810. That of course is in addition to the prior $4860 in monthly billings plus $350 for a contractually discounted phone. Total to date, $6020.00 – or more than half again what I’ve spent since the month PRIOR to the original post on the cleanest little BMW e30 that anybody’s seen anywhere since the early 90s. Obviously, it’s far LESS likely that I’d have reliably paid $95 per over these last few months than $135. That much should be obvious to anybody, even to a financially prudent & responsible person like myself.

    Knowing that no corporation can do as much as stock a bathroom with toilet paper without imposing a ludicrous degree of administrative overhead, it wouldn’t surprise me a bit to learn that CREDO has spent MORE than $570 in it’s effort to deprive itself of what would now be $570 in posted revenue, which of course would accumulate to more than a grand per year if only they would accept it instead of burning their resources on hysterically repetitive rejections of that revenue. In a predictably non-progressive world of corporate ASS-clowns, this is clearly the prudent option – what MORON would expect a 30% line item cut to improve any person’s ability to meet an obligation that is & has been reliably met. Consistently, demonstrably & irrefutably – month by month, year by year – without fail.

    Those of you who are sending your money to CREDO can live secure in the knowledge that it’s being wisely spent on DENYING service to those that might otherwise strengthen CREDO’s network & CREDO’s bottom line. In other words, when the fools crash & burn, don’t blame me.

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