Sprint isn’t just losing millions of customers and billions of dollars, it’s in the midst of pioneering a new management philosophy. We’ll call it the Three-Megabit Monte. Similar to the venerable street con, this is where Sprint leads a customer down a confusing line of lies and inflated charges in the hopes of making a buck.
As detailed by Allen Harkleroad (who is one wrathful Southerner) on his web site, Sprint has been charging him almost four times the price of the amount it pays the local telephone company for two T-1 access lines. That’s about a 75 percent gross margin. But what really drove Harkleroad around the bend was being lied to by a Sprint salesman, who claimed that the company was charged $1,998 for the T-1s (the phone company, on the other hand, said it charges some $500). Harkleroad has since switched providers and pays about $1,500 less per month.
But he’s not done with Sprint yet. He figures the company owes him about $56,000 (for charging him so much), and he wants to get paid. Harkleroad also wants to encourage the rest of Sprint’s customer base on the access side to take a close look at their bills. And the icing on this cake? He alleges that Sprint charged him for providing 3 mbps download speed, but only provided 2.5 mbps, saying that the difference was lost to overhead. And that’s where the the Three-Megabit Monte philosophy gets it name.