AKRON, OH — As part of its merger with Alltel, Verizon Wireless today announced that Alltel customers in the Akron area will begin receiving a Verizon Wireless bill soon after the company completes its billing integration in mid-October. Also, most Alltel stores in the Ohio/Pennsylvania/West Virginia Region, including the company's location at 3750C West Market Street in nearby Fairlawn, will be re-branded as Verizon Wireless, and Alltel customers will be able to receive service at thousands of Verizon Wireless Communications Stores across the nation.
Here are common questions and answers related to the Verizon Wireless billing conversion.
When will current Alltel customers begin receiving a Verizon Wireless bill?
The Midwest Area for Verizon Wireless, which includes the Ohio/Pennsylvania/West Virginia Region, is scheduled for billing conversion the weekend of October 17. The majority of Alltel locations (stores and kiosks) also will be re-branded around this time. Customers will not notice any changes to their service; however, they will begin receiving a Verizon Wireless bill after this date.
Will Alltel customers' wireless devices still work after the billing conversion?
Most Alltel customers' wireless devices will work on the Verizon Wireless network after conversion. Based on Verizon Wireless' device testing, fewer than 1 percent of Alltel customers may need to replace their wireless devices-and those customers will receive a free like device or credit toward a higher priced device from Verizon Wireless. The devices that must be replaced are older ones that cannot receive over-the-air software changes needed to work on the Verizon Wireless network.
Can Alltel customers keep the same phone number? Will their contract terms change?
At billing conversion, Alltel customers will keep their same phone number and their existing contractual terms will remain in effect. If an Alltel customer changes to a Verizon Wireless service plan after the billing conversion, they will still maintain their existing phone number.
Will Alltel customers be required to switch to a Verizon Wireless price plan?
No, Alltel customers will remain on their existing price plans unless they choose to switch to a Verizon Wireless plan.
Once the companies are fully integrated, can an Alltel customer continue to benefit from Alltel's My Circle?
My Circle will continue to be available to Alltel customers while they are on Alltel price plans. If an Alltel customer changes to a Verizon Wireless device and a qualifying price plan, he/she can benefit from the company's Friends & Family® feature at no additional cost. The customer can choose up to five or 10 Friends & Family numbers (including friends on other networks, office numbers or home numbers) and enjoy unlimited calling with them-anywhere within Verizon Wireless' Nationwide Coverage Area.
Can Alltel customers purchase a Verizon Wireless device, like the new BlackBerry® Tour, but still keep their Alltel price plan?
Before billing conversion, Alltel customers can use only Alltel devices with an Alltel price plan. After conversion, however, they will be able to use Verizon Wireless devices on Alltel plans. After billing conversion, customers who wish to upgrade from a basic phone to a Verizon Wireless BlackBerry or PDA device will be required to add a data price plan.
Will all of Alltel's services still be available?
Yes, Verizon Wireless will continue to support Alltel's services for existing customers. However, following the billing and branding conversion in mid-October, new customers activating a new line of service will be offered only Verizon Wireless products.
Can Alltel customers change to Verizon Wireless service prior to billing conversion? If so, will they be charged an early termination fee (ETF)?
Alltel consumers can choose to port their number to Verizon Wireless in advance of the billing conversion by October, 11, 2009. Customers will be charged an ETF if they are not within four months of their Alltel contract end date. However, if an Alltel customer has a Family Share account with one line eligible for an upgrade, then each of the lines on that account may be upgraded.
What happens to the service of Alltel customers with prepaid accounts?
Prepaid customers do not need to take any action. Customers will be notified when their account has been successfully transitioned to Verizon Wireless beginning in October and continuing into November. Prepaid customers can continue to use their Alltel phones and refill cards with their new Verizon Wireless account. Once they are integrated, customers can access account details via My Verizon at verizonwireless.com where they can purchase Verizon Wireless refills, view transaction history, make plan changes and more.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless operates the nation's most reliable and largest wireless voice and data network, serving 87.7 million customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with more than 87,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). For more information, visit www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.