Mobile data usage discrepancy, service interruption

I did call RW/Dish support about this issue, but the support agent was unable to locate or identify any issues via their systems. As I am typing this, mobile data and SMS seems to be working again, so this discussion is mainly to document the problem for others and future reference should it occur again.

For about a week, I was running into a problem where I could only use Wi-Fi on my device. I only noticed this when I needed to use SMS to verify an online service account and was unable to receive the code. When disabling Wi-Fi, my phone switched over to 5G (based on the iconography at the top of the screen); however, I was presented with a notification prompt to “sign in” to the Republic network. Pressing this resulted in a window that reported that my service was “interrupted” because I had either run out of data or missed a payment. The only instruction was to log into my account.

Once there, I noted that it listed 0.44GB data of a 1GB plan used. Additionally, I could see that the account was paid to current. In fact, there was still a little credit remaining. I recently purchased a new Galaxy A53 late November/early December 2022, and that included a month of service.

My original phone was the Galaxy A20 that I bought in April 2020 when I first signed up with RW at the start of the pandemic. It had essentially stopped connecting to the mobile service around October 2022 and could only operate over Wi-Fi. It was also reportedly not compatible with RW/Dish’s new service plans. I will readily admit that I did not research that issue enough to determine that I should have shopped around for a new service provider rather than sign up for the 5G plan. But here we are.

The discussion title mentions a discrepancy. My phone currently claims that I have only used around 25MB of mobile data this month. The previous month’s usage was around 325MB which entirely happened in the first half of that billing period. So even factoring in sloppy accounting from the service provider where we will just sum the two amounts, there is almost a 100MB difference.

Still, with RW/Dish listing my account as active, paid-in-full, and with about 50% of data remaining in the plan, it was very odd to encounter such service interruption. The customer support agent I talked to seemed to be unaware of any other technical issues that could cause this.

Edit: I was just about to hit submit on this post, when I happened to refresh my account manager page on RW/Dish to double-check information. My phone line now reports no data usage for this service period. I really should have taken screenshots.

Did you update your Andorid Settings so that the ‘Billing cycle and data warning’ matches your plan with RW by DISH?
This can be found by accessing the Settings and then use the Search function (Billing is a good argument), to set the date to match your plan.

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@jBen, thanks for the advice. Indeed, I had not updated the data warning (it was set to 2GB, so I dropped it down to 800MB to have a little breathing room for the 1GB plan), but the billing cycle was accurate to within a few days which means this would not have accounted for the discrepancy given when the mobile data usage occurred. And more importantly, none of this would explain why I was served a service interruption notice without cause and why the account information was inaccurate.

But with no one else reporting similar problems, this was probably just a technical glitch—unexpected delays between the various systems at RW/Dish. What I will have to do is watch things carefully at the end of this month. If there appears to be a consistent error in accounting and/or I get the same notice again, that may be reason to start shopping around for a new provider.

Thanks for the feedback as shared bits of information becomes knowledge!
fyi, you can actually set the date to exactly match your plan, it may take a bit of fiddling with ‘Start billing cycle on’ rollar that allows you to touch the highlighted date and move up or down to the date you want.

Sorry, I realize I was not clear. In addition to fixing the data warning, I did also correct the billing cycle start day when I was adjusting the settings. If it matters, the phone had defaulted to the first day of the month but my billing resets the 28th day of the month (effectively the last day).

What is nice, though, is that by changing that date, the phone’s reporting automatically recalculated the data usage. Someone on the Android team certainly deserves a Twinkie‚Ñ¢ for programming that functionality properly.

My experience is not EXACTLY the same as described by others in this discussion, but related. Since at least early summer 2022 I have experienced mobile data drop outs when away from WiFi and wanting to use my RW Only What You Need plan to connect to the internet. I have been in multiple locations with good to excellent cell signal strength (three to five bars) and voice, SMS have worked, but an exclamation mark showed at the right side of the mobile signal strength triangle icon and all mobile data has stopped - i.e. not able to access web pages, apps wanting data connections (like Waze navigation) stop working.

Several hours troubleshooting with RW “Support” via online text chats took me through the same scripts without fixing. Sometimes rebooting the handset restored mobile data, sometimes doing a “Reset your Internet” (circle with open end wrench icon on the Android Settings Internet page) would restore - but more often, no way to restore. Or the data connection would work for a few minutes, then stop again. Multiple rounds of checking and resetting APN settings on my handsets without improvement. After several rounds of this with online “media” (Facebook Messenger) RW customer service agents I was told I had to phone call RW Support for better help, that they couldn’t open a Ticket, but notes would be on my Account. Then the live voice support had no other help nor information (I had expected someone would be able to look at what the wireless network was seeing, but never happened). The live voice agent just told me after going through those same troubleshooting scripts which text agents offered that my Pixel 6 handset “was not approved” for the RW plan, and no further help was available.

The problem had started while using a Moto G Power (2020), continued through Pixel 6, and now shows up on a Pixel 7. It seems possible some app on my handset might be related because my wife has the same RW plan and handset but has not observed the same problem (but she also is less likely to notice the telltale exclamation point on the status bar signal strength icon, instead just disparaging that her phone isn’t working right).

Of course this issue shows up when I need to find navigation or touring information in a strange place on vacation and I don’t like it. Sort of a last straw to leave RW by DISH for a more dependable and better supported service provider. At the time of the most recent occurrence a couple days ago I had used my regular 1 GB of mobile data but My Account still showed 0.35 GB of Add-on Data remaining. Providing undeserved Benefit of the Doubt I added 1 GB of mobile data (and donated $5 to RW) which seemed to fix the issue for the moment. But another service is surely the better resolution.

@Clint said:
Several hours troubleshooting with RW “Support” via online text chats took me through the same scripts without fixing. Sometimes rebooting the handset restored mobile data, sometimes doing a “Reset your Internet” (circle with open end wrench icon on the Android Settings Internet page) would restore - but more often, no way to restore. Or the data connection would work for a few minutes, then stop again. Multiple rounds of checking and resetting APN settings on my handsets without improvement. After several rounds of this with online “media” (Facebook Messenger) RW customer service agents I was told I had to phone call RW Support for better help, that they couldn’t open a Ticket, but notes would be on my Account. Then the live voice support had no other help nor information (I had expected someone would be able to look at what the wireless network was seeing, but never happened). The live voice agent just told me after going through those same troubleshooting scripts which text agents offered that my Pixel 6 handset “was not approved” for the RW plan, and no further help was available.

I’ve wondered whether there was anything magical about the Social Media Support Team as opposed to the 1st Tier agents handling phone calls. Thanks for clearing up that, apparently, the answer is no. What RW by DISH needs desperately is 2nd Tier support for those instances where a 1st Tier agent is unable to resolve the customer’s issue. To their credit, multiple members of the team brought in by DISH to manage the RW brand recognized this but I don’t think corporate shares their opinion. Tickets referenced by any RW by DISH agents theoretically go to one or more “back offices”. The reality is more like they disappear into a black hole as far as follow-up communication with the customer is concerned.

@Clint said:
The problem had started while using a Moto G Power (2020), continued through Pixel 6, and now shows up on a Pixel 7. It seems possible some app on my handset might be related because my wife has the same RW plan and handset but has not observed the same problem (but she also is less likely to notice the telltale exclamation point on the status bar signal strength icon, instead just disparaging that her phone isn’t working right).

Given you’ve experienced the issue on three different phones (and as many as three different operating systems), I’m not confident it’s an app issue.

@Clint said:
At the time of the most recent occurrence a couple days ago I had used my regular 1 GB of mobile data but My Account still showed 0.35 GB of Add-on Data remaining. Providing undeserved Benefit of the Doubt I added 1 GB of mobile data (and donated $5 to RW) which seemed to fix the issue for the moment.

This is an interesting observation because my understanding is any remaining add-on data should be used before the regular monthly data allotment is tapped. In other words, it sounds like the back-end systems are not properly accounting for the add-on data.

@Clint said:
But another service is surely the better resolution.

Switching to another provider is not necessarily a magic bullet solution either. That said; if one has exhausted the troubleshooting abilities of their current provider (RW by DISH or otherwise), consideration of alternatives is a logical next step.

Hi @Clint

At the time of the most recent occurrence a couple days ago I had used my regular 1 GB of mobile data but My Account still showed 0.35 GB of Add-on Data remaining. Providing undeserved Benefit of the Doubt I added 1 GB of mobile data (and donated $5 to RW) which seemed to fix the issue for the moment

I’ve heard from others that the amount of add-on data displayed in the account portal may not be accurately diminishing as the data is consumed, leaving people to think they still have data available when they don’t. Such a situation would explain this most recent occurrence, but would not explain how the steps you’ve described as fixes at other times might resolve the issue.

(Not suggesting that’s a reason not to move your service, just sharing that others have reported something that may be affecting you, too.)