After having playback issues with Google Play Music (the All Access monthly subscription), I thought I’d give Microsoft Groove Music a try. It’s a buck a month more than Google, but during the free trial month it worked flawlessly. Their catalog is comparable to Google’s, so I figured I’d live with the overlap for a little while and then if Groove was still belting out tunes like a champ, Google Music would get a break-up email.
But a few days ago, Microsoft Music crashed…hard. The auto sign-in failed. My manual sign-in failed. Groove Music told me with a sly grin that if I wanted to get to first base, I had to join…silly boy. Granted, the trial period had ended, but they had everything they needed to bill me for continued service. To be asked to join again kind of made me wonder, you know, if Groove really loved me after all.
At the end of my second unhelpful chat session with MS tech support, I simply asked if I could be put in touch with someone who could immediately cancel my subscription. Turns out that’s the purview of the X-Box support team. Go figure. I haven’t had an X-Box since my son’s console crapped out years ago and he asked “dad, can I borrow yours just for a few days?” Anyway, while the tech was cancelling my subscription, I asked if he could tell me why the service had stopped functioning. As someone who’s built a few web apps over the years, I found his reply more than a little unsettling: even though my subscription was set to auto-renew, it hadn’t, and eventually my access was cancelled. What the system did do, however, was set a new billing date 17 days after the original date. I immediately had an ALIENS flashback: “When can we expect rescue?” “Seventeen days.” “Seventeen days??!! We’re not gonna last 17 minutes with those things crawling around!!”
Why the hell 17 days? And why not tell me all of this on my MS Subscriptions page? I didn’t actually ask these questions because by then the deal was undone, and the only one who wanted out of that chat more than me was the tech on the other end.
Sure hope my Office365 subscription doesn’t get messed up–Excel is WAY to useful to be without…