Sep 19, 2009

Excerpts Saturday! Sad Truth About SmarTalk

Businesses, they tend to manipulate consumers mind by creating promotional activities to boast there sales or market status but there is often a big catch behind it like Smart Telecommunication's Smart Talk promo which promises "Unlimited Talk Time 24/7" for 5 Days the least fetching a Php100 only per registration and 30 days maximum for Php500 to subscribers, a very good offer that would have become the best offer yet for mobile phone subscribers but then the sad truth lies beneath, you will only be registered by "chance" with 100% of my attempts did not push through. As far as I can remember, I attempted to load and register via retail reloaders 40X in a weeks time and all this attempt failed and since there is really no other means for me to do so because Smart Business does not accept Smart Talk loading and I cannot used SMS feature having a Lite subscription, it leaves me no choice but to question this promo to the highest intend.
Smart Customer Care doesn't even accept calls and inquiries anymore, somewhat like trying to avoid questions about there "deceptive scheme" and just ignore everyone. I believe they miscalculated something with this promotion and it was to late for them to realize the gravity of it that's why they succumbed into this kind of strategy leaving most of there subscribers confuse about everything. Its a big mess!

They should have not come up with such offer if they can't stand it, its deception and that makes us look like fools! I just hope though that they can make up something to there valued consumers to cover this mistake and they should act soon. I don't want to end up hating Smart because that would leave me with nothing to subscribe to, I don't like Globe because of there confusing and unfair billing pattern and Sun Cellular will send me to caves land having no signal here in my place, I really have no other choice at all.

I would love to encourage Sun Cellular to step up there coverage so everyone could enjoy there awesome and cheap telecom service, that would have made everyone happy and contented. If anybody from Sun Cellular who can read this post, please put a Sun towers in Misamis Occidental or Zamboanga Del Sur so we will be spared from high cost telecom services of Smart and Globe, reach out please!


I understand your sentiment dude.
Well, I'll write my experience below. Hope you will not be pissed by this one as it's very long:

I tried SmartTalk too on my Smart Buddy SIM. I only tried it once. When I tried to register again, I failed. Also, the problem with SmarTalk is that, if you've enjoyed unlimited calls and then end that call, you will really have a hard time making a call once again. So I tried to search something about this on the web and found out a lot of similar complaints.
Smart is always good with that. They deceive us through their promotions. I remembered back then when they launched their Smart 258 Text 15. I enjoyed it for several months until such time I cannot register anymore. Then here comes a much more expensive Unli 20 and I registered through it. The same story: after a month of joy and continuous registration, I cannot register anymore. Then here comes another service called Unli25. The same story once again so now I'm left to their All Text 20!

At that time, I felt the need to transfer to Globe but the problem is, I do not know anyone using Globe. It was just my Uncle who is in Manila that uses Globe. So I tried Sun Cellular.
It was 2005 when I first used Sun Cellular. I've got to admit something. That was the time that I almost throw my phone due to frustration.
Problems of Sun Cellular last year 2005:
1. Signal whimsically drops to zero bar whenever you place a call in low signal areas.
2. Whenever you dial a number, a frustrating message called "Network Busy" pops out.
3. There is no signal inside our house.
4. Call quality is very very choppy.
5. Text Messages arrive very late.
6. Sometimes, when you send text messages, it will fail although the signal is very strong and even though you have enough credits in your account.
7. Sometimes when you call someone, you will hear a voice prompt saying that "the subscriber you are calling is currently not available, please try your call later" even though the party you are calling is not engaged in a call, the phone is switched on and the signal is full.

I didn't like the experience so I went back to Smart. I promised to myself that I'll go back to Sun only if their network will be reliable enough.

Now it's 2009, almost all of my classmates who have been using Smart for more than two years are now using Sun Cellular. I asked them about their experience on Sun and almost all of them said that they are happy with Sun. At first I didn't believe them until such time I was left as the only Smart subscriber in the class. So I tried Sun Cellular again for the second time. I was surprised that there is a HUGE improvement in their service:
1. The "NETWORK BUSY" problem is still there but that's very rare nowadays as compared to the almost whole day of network busy problem last 2005.
2.Signal is very strong already (at least here in Cebu).
3. Call quality has significantly improved but still becomes choppy at times albeit not as bad as the experience last year 2005.
4. Text messages arriving late is not as common as before.
5. It is now easier to send text messages but still, there are times that problem number 6 listed above happens, though not as frequent as last year 2005.
So right now, I am already using Sun Cellular as my primary SIM on my N82 and my Smart Buddy as my secondary SIM on my second phone.

And by the way, with Sun's Unlimited Call, I do no have problems with both registration and making calls through it unlike Smart's SmarTalk which I had problems both in registration and making calls.

Good day and sorry for writing too long. =)

Good to hear from you again Dude c", Your comment was more informative enough.

Good that you experience the unlimited talk at least once, never had a chance, Im pretty sure it was out of pure luck as Smart were restricting number of registrations per day, quite annoying actually but its part of the scheme. its a half hearted offer born out of pure greediness to attract consumers, the ugly truth.

Regarding Globe, I agree with you that few subscribers uses it, and mostly they were within urban areas, rural areas specially in the provinces uses Smart as it has the widest coverage.

SunCellular on the other hand is emerging and I'm not surprise to find out that it had conquered Cebu, this is the only Telecom provider that offers honest to goodness rates and they should be rewarded for this. If not with Sun, we could still be paying overprice rates made by Smart and Globe.

If only we have Suncellular signals here, I would have shifted to Sun ages ago c", but unfortunately we dont so I have no other choice but to stick with Smart against my very will.

Yeah I'm lucky. All I can say with SmarTalk is that, it's a nice service on ads which doesn't look that good in reality. Once enrolled in the service during the first call, you should use all the battery of your phone to call and never end that call until your battery becomes empty. Because by the next time you call, it's very difficult to connect.

Yeah without Sun Cellular, I don't think we'll be enjoying all these promotions from the two giants. Sun Cellular is the pioneer of unlimited calls and texts. Smart and Globe are greedy for profits and I remember they even filed a complaint against Sun regarding their 24/7 Unlimited Call and Text Service. Imagine the two giants teamed up and bullied Sun, a new entrant.

By the way, Sun Cellular has just won an award last June as the most promising service provider of the year. Click on this link:

wow, amazing! c", and the award is given by a prestigious organization in Asia and the Pacific besting the rest of the Telcos in the region. Truly world class, Kudos to Sun!

I really hope they could extend there network coverage nationwide.

Yes, Sun Cellular still lack cell sites, especially in the VisMin area.
But regardless of that, Davao and CDO are reportedly having strong signal of Sun Cellular.

I'm just envious about the fact that Sun has already rolled out 3.5G cell sites in Metro Manila only. I just wish that they roll out nationwide 3G as fast as they can since Globe and Smart already dominate the 3G market. And before we know it, EXTELCOM might join the mobile market action in the future so Sun should hurry up.

tama ka dyan Rba at Mr. Blogger. Maxado na marami naloloko ang Smart. Nagregister ako sa SmarTalk sa pag-aakalang makakatawag ako unlimitedly. Kaso nagkamali ako. Nakatawag lang ako once tapos nung dial ko ulit, hindi na ako makatawag kasi daw "Your number cannot be completed as dialled, please check the number and dial again!" Sinong niloko nila?! Eh nasa call register yong number at pinindot ko lang ang call key para ma-dial ulit ang *64000929XXXXXXX. Nakatawag ako kanina, ngayon hindi na. Siguro pasimple nilang bino-block ang mga tawag para di sila malugi. Kainis!

Sa totoo lang talaga, mas oks pa nga ung Sun eh. Ang dali nang makakonek di gaya nung dati, mga 2006 ata un. Gumaganda na talaga serbisyo nila. Un nga lang may kahinaan ang signal sa loob ng mga liblib na lugar. Pero ok pa rin un, at least tapat sa serbisyo. D gaya ng Smart, puro pangungutya lang ang alam.

By d way, sino sa inyo nakasubok ng Globe Unlicalls 30? Meron na ba? Musta naman? Gaya ba ng Smart na halos ayaw kang patawagin?

Exactly the same experience as you Anonymous. Also, I can't call through SmarTalk again when I was lucky enough to register for it because when I did, I get the message "All lines are busy now, please try your call later". I guess they really do the blocking so as to avoid network congestion. They now have close to 40 million subscribers (Talk N' Text subscribers included) so I guess they'll have lesser chance to accommodate all of the subscribers as compared to Sun's just over 10 million subscribers.

And yes true, Sun's signal is quite spotty, especially on places with large obstructions. It's because Sun is only using the 1800 MHz GSM frequency whereas both Smart and Globe uses both 900 MHz and 1800 MHz GSM frequency.
The 900MHz, which is of a lower frequency, gives you the advantage of building lesser network base stations while still able to sustain substantial coverage, even indoors but 900 MHz alone won't do in today's huge subscriber base. 900 MHz has the disadvantage of having only a small capacity (hence can accommodate few subscribers) and its quality of signal can be distorted by certain weather conditions such as rain. The 1800 MHz frequency on the other hand, which is of a higher frequency, will allow the network to provide clear signals that cannot be distorted by severe weather conditions and best of all, it has high capacity which is suited for today's huge subscriber base. However, the disadvantage of the 1800 MHz frequency is that, it's coverage is not that strong, especially inside very big buildings so that's the reason why Sun Cellular has lesser signal when you're inside enclosed areas.

That's why the two giants prefer to use both GSM frequencies - so that they can have both the benefits of 900 MHz and 1800 MHz.

Yes according to some feedbacks on some forums, Globe Unlicalls 30 has choppy lines yet you can easily call, though I cannot come to confirm it since I haven't tried it yet. Probably Globe can allow its subscribers to call easily because, Globe Unlicalls has just been launched in some areas yet (including Cebu) and is still not launched nationwide. But anyone within the areas where it has already been launched can call anyone nationwide. Also another reason is that, Globe didn't heavily advertise their Globe Unlicalls just as how Smart did on their SmarTalk. In other words, only a few people know that Globe Unlicalls is existing.

For those who are curious about price denominations of Globe Unlicalls, it comes in two variants:
Globe Unlicalls 30 - Unlimited Globe to Globe or Globe to TM calls valid for ONE day.
Globe Unlicalls 100 - Unlimited Globe to Globe or Globe to TM calls valid for FIVE days.


sasabihin ko sana na your lucky dahil you were able yo register pero mukhang naisahan ka pa ng Smart dahil yung na load mo for smartalk, isang beses mo lang nagamit c", Diyos nalang ang bahala sa kanila hahaha.

anyways, not tried Globe unli30 yet kasi naka plan ako sa Smart, give me feedback though kun nasubukan mo na :)


thanks for the Info dude, now I know what this frequencies mean c", never had an idea to look behind this connectivity specifications, cheers!

globe launched unlicalls that has unlitxt with it, saw it in there website few days ago then smart answered back with launching the same service last sunday with tv ads shown, at least we knew that smart's unlicall is a haux and maybe adding up unlitxt to the package is a way of making up to consumers who wont be able to avail the unlicall after a single call or maybe another deception in the making and that it would take ages to send sms. with globe, this will need to be tried, i will ask my sister to avail it and give my feedback soon c",

Salamat Mr. Blogger at salamat Rba sa impormasyon.

Mmmmmmm.. Sana nga lang maisip ng mga tao na wag nalang mag-register sa Smartalk na yan para hindi sila madagdag sa listahan ng mga naloko ng Smart. tsk.tsk.tsk.

To Rba:
Mag-Sun ka na lang! Itapon mo na sa basurahan yang Smart sim mo.
Teka, sino sa inyo nakasubok nang manakawan ng load sa Smart?


As far as I know, RBa is using two sim, Sun yung primary niya then Smart.

Me I'm using Smart plan, kun meron lang Sun sa place namin, matagal na aking nag lumipat.

Nanakawan na rin ako nang load before nung prepaid pa yung gamit ko, Smart and Globe, pareho lang yung scheme nila. c",

Sana marami ang makabasa sa post na to para malaman nila yung totoo.

@ anonymous:

Tama si Gregg003. Sun yung primary sim ko tsaka Smart ang aking secondary. But I guess I can't throw my Smart Buddy sim because I just love Smart and I don't know why. Maybe with a sentimental value of any sort? I just don't know...

I have a lot of experience with that sudden disappearance of my prepaid credits. Usually, it happens while mobile browsing and sometimes, by calling. But oddly enough, there are times when my prepaid credits disappear like magic. I mean, it disappears even though I haven't done anything with it yet. There was even a time when I reloaded my account with 115 pesos and only 18 pesos remained. Imagine how cruel was that! But despite of all these rants regarding Smart, I still can't set aside Smart because we can't deny the fact that they have introduced a lot of innovations in the past and that's what makes them unique.

@ Gregg003,

Don't worry, Sun Cellular is investing as much as 350 Million US dollars this year to further improve its network and to build more network base stations in the country. If I'm not mistaken, they are very fast in terms of network expansion. According to a reliable source, Sun's number of cell sites as of Dec 2008 is at 3,230 but in June 2009, they already have 4,603 cell sites. Imagine within just 6 months, they were able to put up as many as 1,373 cell sites.
Nevertheless, Sun Cellular still has the lowest number of cell sites.

Number of cell sites by operator:
Smart - 8,477 cell sites as of June 2009
Globe - 6,446 cell sites as of April 2009
Sun Cellular - 4,800+ cell sites (according to their official website

buti naman kung ganon ang ginagawa ng Sun.

at salamat din sa impormasyon tungkol sa number of cell sites. hanep ka bro dami mo alam.

to Mr. Blogger:

Pareho lang yang Smart at Globe. Ang sasarap pag-untugin ang mga ulo ng management team nila. Mga magnanakaw parehong walang mapili.

c", @RBa

hopefully dude, actually a sun shop have just been opened recently in ozamis city, thats about 10km away from my place and they really have great plan packages. unfortunately the signal didn't reach my town, i would have applied for one already and dish out my smart postpaid

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