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How Google Fi has totally scammed me and now changes it's stance every step 0 Recommended Answers 6 Replies 2 Upvotes
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I'm now an ex-customer of Google Fi and it has been an utterly disappointing experience - especially so for the lack of professionalism from the customer support team that seems to change it's position literally withe every conversation.

I'm hoping to both share with the community here and curious if others have come across similar issues as well.

I'll attempt to also put a timeline so it's easier to follow what happened:
- Approx. 24th Aug: I searched online for prepaid service options. Other than the conventional operators, I found Google Fi and tried to figure how it operates. I called up to check on some items in terms of questions. I had an older Google Pixel as well and I was told that I could trade-in this phone (without requiring to purchase a new one). I was given an approx. trade-in value. 
- 12th Sept: I decided to sign up for a new connection, completed the form and provided all the details including my trade-in and requested for the SIM to be shipped. Very important (as you will realize later in the story) - there is a tracking number for the shipped SIM card. So I can follow it.
- 16th Sept: I receive the SIM card and I activate service. No trade-in kit yet but I figured it might take a little longer.
- Through Sept: I kept checking the online billing and account management to see any update on the trade-in kit but it just said (and still does!!) - "trade-in kit requested on Sept 12".
- 18th Sept: I receive a $20 referral credit and applicable for my next billing cycle.
- 19th Sept: my first statement is generated and due to be auto-paid on Sept 29.
- 29th Sept: payment is deducted for first statement. No news yet about the trade-in kit.
- 11th Oct: Almost a month since the request for the trade-in kit, I call Google Fi support a bit upset with the way things have been and the person acknowledges the delay and says she is going to escalate this with the Google Fi team and get me a response in 48 hours at highest priority. I tell her I am pretty upset with the way this has been and likely will cancel but I look forward to receiving a response after 2 days.
- 15th Oct: More than 48 hours (including working days) have passed, no response from anyone at Google. So I call Google Fi support again asking them what happened. This time I am told they want my address "again" so they will send a new trade-in kit. The support agent says a kit was sent earlier but apparently I did not receive it. Do note, I receive on an average at least 2 packages/letters a day at this address - interestingly this time there is NO tracking number... wonder why? Anyway I give my address again.
- 24th Oct: No trade-in kit, Oct 19th statement gets generated and this does not apply the $20 credit that was supposed to be applied (second statement). I am really frustrated with Google Fi and I ask to cancel the service. I also follow-up on where is the trade-in kit?
- 25th Oct: I receive yet another reply saying oh it was sent, you have not received it? Again the person wants to send yet another kit and confirm the shipping address (all along I'm obviously staying at the same address). This time, I don't believe these evidently questionable attempts at shipping and request for a tracking number - this request is conveniently side-stepped. Very importantly, the customer support is able to confirm that it was in fact delivered to my address BUT she doesn't have any way to prove this to me - no tracking number, no evidence. This is utterly ridiculous and smells of lying!! 
27th Oct: I ask for tracking number and it escalated to a "product specialist" who will respond in 1-2 days... This is where it becomes a complete scam of sorts.
29th Oct: No response so I follow-up again... I'm traveling internationally while trying to communicate over email.
30th Oct: I get a response that a product specialist will soon follow-up but the support team is available 24/7 if I need them (but for what? I cancelled the service)
31st Oct: V***at (just protecting the name for now) - Supervisor responds apologizing for the delay. "Claims" the trade-in kit has been shipped twice to my address so requests an alternate address.
1st Nov: I'm amazed at the audacity with which these folks are lying now :) If you've sent this twice, you are able to 'confirm' it was delivered - why not share a tracking number or evidence? Worst, why didn't the $20 credit apply to last statement? I ask these things and am responded to by S**d (Supervisor) - who again conveniently side-steps the request for tracking numbers or evidence. He now spins a new story that the $20 will not be applied to my account since my account is closing! Wow, this is totally contrary to what I was told earlier and this should have applied to my second statement (prior to which the $20 was applied to my account). I'm also going to share his response here as to why the trade-in kit was not delivered: "To address the request to get a Trading Kit, we've sent you one previously on the address you've shared. There are 2 requests being sent on the same address. I understand that it has taken more time than anticipated. The trade in Kit should have been at your doorstep. As you've not received one, we've requested another shipping address to which a Trade-in kit will be sent. There may me reasons from the shipper that you did not receive 2 packages on the same address." Look at that last line! Seriously? :)
- 2nd Nov: I respond getting obviously agitated by how this is getting worse than what it already was. Only to realize, the peak of scams is yet to come... Az**z responds as follows: "I am sorry to know that you are aware before that the referral credits will not work if the account is cancelled. I'll definitely take this as a feedback and make sure the information is very clear to our customers. Regarding the trade-in kit. I see that there is no update from the shipping after the Kit has shipped, while I don't have the option to track the status of trade-in kit. However, I can initiate the request for the new trade-in kit to sent to your address, once you are back in USA, please reply to this email with the shipping address so that we can process the request for the trade-in kit again. Upon checking the details, I see that you didn't place the order for any mobile phone on this account. May I know if you have placed the order from another account as the trade-in is possible only when you place the order for the mobile phone. We will not be able to help you with the trade-in if you have placed the order for only the SIM card. If the order you are referring to is placed from a different account, you will need to contact us from the respective account."

Now see the items underlined in the last response:
- So it's a customer's fault that their promised credits aren't applied as promised and well they are not aware that this is how Google Fi operates...
- Now Az**z claims he has no way to know from shipping if the kit had shipped. Entirely contrary to the written response from their team on 25th Oct that they were able to "confirm" it was shipped to my address and the story repeated multiple times by others. How blatant a lie!
- Lastly, he now claims that Google Fi won't do the trade-in if you didn't order a phone. Seriously? I had verified this BEFORE starting the process. You "apparently" kept sending me the trade-in kit knowing I had not ordered another phone. But you say this now?

I do have written responses for all these that I am happy to share but this has been by far the most unprofessional experience with a phone service. I certainly don't want any Google credits because I'm fairly certain I am never using Google Fi again (and will recommend anyone I know to not do so either). I would simply appreciate getting what I was promised and ending this chapter once and for all.

Terribly disappointed Google customer.
All Replies (6)
Hello Rahul Kamdar,
This is a user to user forum and I am neither a Google employee nor a Google Fi employee and cannot speak for either entity.
It is apparent that a misunderstanding occurred at the time of your first inquiry.  Either the rep misunderstood your intentions or you misunderstood the requirements associated with the trade-in process.  
Definition from the Cambridge English Dictionary:
trade-in meaning: A method of buying something new by giving something you own as part of the payment for it.
I can understand the confusion that resulted from the original misinterpretation of trade-in.  
It appears from your statement of intent that you were not seeking a trade-in but instead had expectations that Google Fi would do an outright purchase of your device.  Subsequent actions by reps in response to your inquiries about a trade-in kit would indicate they were acting under the premise that you had purchased a new phone from Google Fi but somehow had not received a kit in order to submit your trade-in.  Therefore, they attempted to manually initiate the sending of a kit, an action that was bound to ultimately and repeatedly fail as no purchase had been made for which a trade-in could be accepted as partial payment, ergo no kit could be sent. 
An unfortunate set of circumstances indeed, but certainly not a scam.
marked this as an answer

Thanks for taking the time to read and respond. Some comments:

- If indeed there was a misunderstanding at the first instance, it should have been corrected at the very least in the next 6 to 7 instances of communicating with Google Fi support. In fact, the contrary happened as shared. Why did they claim to keep sending the kit (including "confirming" it was sent) and then claim they had no way of knowing whether it was delivered?
- If indeed Google Fi created a misunderstanding and can verify based on the written communication exchanged, is it not the responsibility of the brand (Google Fi) to take the onus on correcting?
- Separate to all this is the referral credit, why was it not applied when it was supposed to be effective?

Sadly, both the actions and the response from the Google Fi have been misleading and now intentionally fraudulent. Written communication notwithstanding, there is currently no attempt to fix.
marked this as an answer
Rahul Kamdar,
You're welcome.  
It's my guess, and it's only a guess, that the reps did request trade-in kits be sent to you but their requests were not fulfilled because no purchase was associated with the trade-in, and a purchase is required.  It appears that the absence of a purchase went unnoticed for some time.  However, as stated, I'm only guessing.
As to your other questions, I am not a Google employee nor a  Google Fi employee; therefore, I have neither the knowledge nor the authorization to address them.    
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Well, thanks for responding again.. but if they weren't getting fulfilled due to an issue in THEIR system, I don't understand how I am to be responsible or suffer because of that. Either ways, them not honoring what they communicated earlier becomes a loss for me. If they acknowledge they made a mistake, they ought to fix it? Else it is an irresponsible brand that is misleading it's customers and hence running a scam..
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Sorry Rahul,   your misunderstanding of what a trade-in is, is the root of the issue here.   You trade in a phone as partial credit towards a new phone, just like a trade-in for a car is you getting a credit for handing over a car you own, towards the purchase of a new car.

Expecting Google to know you had no intention of buying a new phone and simply wanted to sell them your old phone isn't reasonable.   Nor is expecting their fullfilment system to be set up to deal with clearly unacceptable cases.

Something not working out like you'd like it to doesn't make it a 'scam'.
Last edited 11/9/19
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Hey Kevin, it's not just the trade-in that is being attributed to in my experience here. It starts with lack of clarity, what seemed like multiple instances of untrue information communicated (see: confirmed trade-in kits being sent but when asked for tracking info, requests were ignored), changing communication by employees and finally not honoring the referral credits. It's a pattern of misleading the customer. I'm sure you read through the details but happy to share more if it helps.

Anyway, this chapter seems to have ended and looking at other reports on this forum, it seems being utterly disappointed with Google Fi isn't uncommon.
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