According to Global News, Fido will soon start charging customers $10 for live-chat interactions, when clients call in to complete certain services.
Notably, if customers call to update contact information, make a bill payment or reset a voicemail password they will be charged.
The divide between free live-chat calls and ones that come with a fee is relatively simple: some things you can do yourself online, you will pay for if you attempt to do it over the phone. Though not all self-serve transactions will be charged over the phone in the new plan.
TL;DR Fido will soon be charging customers $10 when they attempt to perform certain transactions over the phone instead of doing it over their online application or website.
So how are those any different from someone who wants to call in? Why does that get an extra charge?
If I don’t have a big data plan and no wifi, and I can’t get to the store... calling in means that I have to pay a fee worth 1 GB of data a month?
Trying to sell more?
Many people on Twitter are already calling out the Canadian telecommunications company, even though the charges won't roll out until May 14th, according to Global News.
Fido has been quick to respond to the concerns and complaints online, assuring customers that simply calling in won't result in a charge.
Hey Kevin! The fee only applies to certain transactions that can be done for free via our many self-serve options! -Nick
It's only if customers attempt to complete certain transactions over the phone, which can be done online, that they will be charged.
Though, of course, this raises more questions about how this will negatively impact people who already struggle with accessibility online.
In that case if someone has all these options but still needs help, clearly, they have needs that extend beyond the available technology (or as I stated earlier, are elderly/technology averse), why is ok to charge extra for that help just because it comes in a different format?
Those who already struggles with using technology, or even people who perhaps don't have Internet access, may be dinged with $10 just for trying to pay their phone bill. According to the Global News report, Fido says some customers with "special needs" will not be subject to the new fine. But Fido does not clarify how those customers will be identified. The company also does not state how it will define those needs.