My Verizon Incredible Keeps Breaking: Help Me, WalletPop!

Verizon phone broken
Verizon phone broken

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Q. In December, I bought a Droid Incredible off contract from Verizon. The phone lasted less than a day before it died and refused to charge. They gave me a new battery. The phone worked for 3 more hours with the new battery, then the same thing happened. They sent me a second Droid Incredible.

A few minutes after having that one, the phone went into an auto-reboot loop, just restarting itself over and over. They sent me a replacement and the same thing happened. They sent me another replacement and the same thing happened. They sent me yet another and this time the phone worked great for about 2 months. Then that old problem, the auto reboot loop, started again.

They sent me a fifth Droid Incredible. As soon as I turned it on the same thing happened. At that point I went to the Verizon store and the guy thought that my problem was that I was using the same battery in every phone. He had Verizon send me a sixth Droid Incredible, and a new (third) battery. This was about three weeks ago, and the phone worked great until yesterday, when all my apps stopped working with an "Error: application data low" message.

I called Verizon and they sent me a seventh phone in this three month time frame. I refused to accept another Droid Incredible, so they said they'd send me the Droid Pro even though I bought my Incredible with my own money because it was a phone I wanted. I did not choose the Pro and I don't want it. But I want a working phone so I said okay. I reviewed my address with the person four times, but when the phone was sent out, she failed to put my name on it and sent it to the wrong address. When it finally arrived, she had sent me the wrong phone -- another Droid Incredible -- by mistake.

So here I am now, three months after shelling out hundreds of dollars for a cool new phone, and I am currently without ANY working phone at all. I would love for them to acknowledge that I spent money on my phone and shouldn't be stuck with one that I don't want! If I can't have a Droid Incredible (which I really loved when it was working), I want an iPhone.
-- Dori Manela

A. Dori, this is quite the ordeal. To get to the bottom of it, I contacted Thomas Pica in Verizon Wireless corporate communications. As you know, he looked into it and had someone from the company contact you. He wouldn't share the outcome of that conversation because of the company's privacy policy, but I know from speaking with you that they're going to upgrade your phone early, which will allow you to purchase an iPhone for $199.99. They've also credited you $100 towards that purchase because of all the trouble you've had, so you'll be able to buy the phone for around $100.

According to Verizon's website, the 16 GB iPhone 4 retails for $649.99 out of contract, so this is a substantial savings. I'm still not sure why you had so many issues with the Droid Incredible -- Pica says your situation was unusual, and some quick research shows me that the phone gets pretty good user reviews online. In any case, I hope your new phone works out better for you.

While we're on the subject of Verizon, just a quick PSA to all readers: The company will be eliminating the one-year contract option as of April 17. If you want a one-year term instead of the standard two-year term, you should lock in before that date. Verizon's website says their early termination fees range from $175 to $350.