"A nasty experience."0.5 starson by DaveinNV
Pros: Long battery life, keyboard lights up, camera is OK, can receive e-mails sent as text messages through email@example.com
Cons: Recycled phone number gets endless spam calls right from day one, limited number blocking capacity, limited reception range, confusing menu, terrible website and even more terrible customer service.
Summary: I purchased this Samsung T139 phone from Wal-Mart for $30 with a $10 pay-as-you-go prepaid card for the sole purpose of getting stock alerts from my broker via tmomail.com.
Within a minute of the purchase, I got a spam call right inside the store even though I had not called anybody yet or given the number to anyone.
It was only the beginning. Soon after that I began to get multiple spam calls every day and although I put them on the number block list (which has a very limited capacity of just 25 numbers), the text messages and voicemails still kept coming through and eating up my card. I also put its number on the Do-Not-Call list but you know how effective that one is.
Then I had the voicemail turned off by the customer service. After that the phone suddenly stopped ringing when my tmomail alerts came but rang when the spam texts came which was not at all desirable. Everything is unpredictable with this phone.
I had a chat session (it is unbelievably hard to find on the website) with T-Mobile but was told that I would have to give their customer service a call. When I called them (bypassing the troubleshooting menu options with a zero), the agent's accent was so bad that I requested to be transferred to another agent which only marginally improved matters. However, after plenty of "say it again" and tinkering (nothing seems to be straightforward with this phone) even tmomail stopped working and I was told that it was not supposed to work with my phone anyway which I refused to believe because I had been getting alerts from my broker up to that point all right.
As for the spam calls, I was told that I may have been given a "recycled" number already on the spammer world's turkey list. Besides, blocking a number will still let the text messages through.
So I told them that since the sole purpose for my buying this phone was to receive alerts via tmomail (which I had been getting until now), I propose to wait until the spam texts ate up all the money in my card and then throw it away in the dumpster.
I also discovered that the phone had a trick of switching automatically to the vibration mode. Anyway, after doing some more tinkering and resetting on my own and general frustration, somehow I got both the tmomail and the alert rings working again although I would not be able repeat the steps in the future.
Such is the situation at this moment. I tried taking a single photo and it was good enough for my taste. I also went on a trip and the T139 lost signal although my other cell phone (a rudimentary Nokia 1600 from Net 10) had no problems at all. I have not talked with anyone so can not comment on its sound quality. Also the charging socket has a very flimsy rubbery cover which will probably break off soon. The dumpster option is still open and I will probably do it unless the spam calls stop coming - a very unlikely prospect.
Just one man's experience.