Tuesday, 15 December 2009

I Want My Buttons Back (Buttons Back, Buttons Back, Buttons Back, Buttons Back...)

I have had it with my phone. More specifically, with putting more money on my phone. What happened to just pressing a few buttons and getting a top-up? Whose idiotic idea was to replace that with a series of yes/no questions? Utilising a system that cannot differentiate those two words unless one remains stationary in a silent room?

Even that doesn't work. You have to say "yes" in the right way, too. Literally hours of research has revealed that saying it with even the slightest hint of uncertainty or impatience will cause it to fail, and of course those are two things unlikely to creep into your voice when trying to gain the cash necessary to continue an important conversation using a idiotic system which might as well be Russian roulette for all the input I actually have into the procedure. No, the only way to get the job done is to sigh "yes" in a voice somewhere between infinite happiness and sexual release, neither of which was on offer at the time (why d'you think I needed my phone?).

How is this considered an improvement in technology? The computer was an improvement in technology. OK, so they started off as card-addicted beep-bleeping wardrobes with as much mathematical acumen as an oxygen-starved tyrannosaur, but at least the idea was to replace the abacus. This bollocks is designed to replace pressing a button.

And even that doesn't make any sense, because you still need to push buttons in order to put in your card number. What the Hell was the ad campaign for this? "Like phones? Need to top one up? Prepared to push up to eleven buttons? Refuse to push fourteen or more? Then have we got the thing for you!"

Thanks, Mr Thirteen-Buttons-Is-My-Absolute-Limit. This is your fault. I hope you get trapped in a room filling with water, and the door has a fourteen button code lock.

Also, there's a shark. Not for any thematically appropriate reason. I just like sharks.

1 comment:

Pause said...

If you've already tried it then I apologise for suggesting the potentially obvious, but you know that many voice recognition services accept pressing 1 for yes and 2 for no as well, right? Always worth a shot when you get one of those things.

Still, I remember when Virgin Trains or someone did something similar with ticket sales, to gather information and "save time" before the call was transferred to a human. My time or theirs they were never clear on, but trying to convince the software I wanted to go to Lytham and not King's Lynn was particularly wearisome.