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老外在中国:不要轻易更改你的手机号

China Daily英文微信 2018-12-28 17:40

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Because my wife was working in Tianjin a few years ago, I naively thought it would be a convenient place to sign up for phone service.
因为我妻子几年前在天津工作,我天真地以为在这里注册手机号码很方便。

What I didn't realize was that my colleagues in Beijing would ignore my calls because they thought a scammer was targeting them from another city.
让我没想到的是,我在北京的同事会拒接我电话,因为他们以为被另一个城市的诈骗分子盯上了。

In the end, however, this wasn't the biggest problem. That honor goes to canceling the number at the end of the contract.
不过最后,这还不是最大的问题,最大的问题是合同终止时取消号码。

I'll say here that my provider, China Unicom, delivered terrific monthly service.
我想说的是,我的手机运营商中国联通,他们每个月为我提供了非常棒的服务。

I could acquire a cell signal from just about anywhere, the internet service was fast, the price was low.
我在任何地方手机都有信号,网速很快,价格也很便宜。

I was in no hurry to drop the number. After all, it appeared on my business cards.
我并不急于放弃这个号码。毕竟,它出现在我的名片上。

But my wife kept finding better deals. She has an uncanny ability to spot a bargain. On Taobao she's like a heat-seeking missile, and I'd swear I've seen her iPad smoking after she's done with it.
但我妻子一直在寻找更划算的交易。在发现便宜货这方面,我的妻子有一种不可思议的能力。她在淘宝上就像一枚装有热跟踪装置的导弹,我发誓我曾看到她的ipad被她用得冒烟了。

It was no surprise, then, that one day she found a great phone deal here in Beijing — and with China Unicom, no less, which I already liked.
因此,某天她发现北京有一个很划算的手机套餐,而且还是我喜欢的中国联通时,我并不觉得惊讶。

So my first order of business was to cancel the old number. Easy, I thought.
所以我的第一个任务就是取消原来的号码。我本来以为这应该很容易。

Guess again. I was shocked to learn that to accomplish this I would have to travel to Tianjin and appear IN PERSON at the company's office with my photo ID.
你们猜怎么了,让我吃惊的是,要想注销号码,我必须带上身份证明亲自前往天津的联通营业厅办理。

It seems in a developing country that you cannot make such arrangements by telephone or internet.
在一个发展中国家,似乎无法通过电话或互联网注销手机号码。

Worse, if you have a refund coming, there's more pain in store for your posterior.
更糟糕的是,如果你需要退款,麻烦会更多。

To collect your money, you must make a second trip to the office to appear IN PERSON after the contract expires.
为了拿到退款,你必须在合同到期后再亲自去一趟营业厅。

That you simply want a different number from the same company matters not.
你只想要一个来自同一家公司的不同号码并不重要。

China Unicom in Beijing is a separate division from China Unicom in Tianjin, and they're not integrated. Accounts are not fungible.
北京的中国联通与天津的中国联通是相互独立的两个部门,他们不是一个整体,号码也不能通用。

Look, I understand about developing countries. Business systems may not be as polished as they are where I come from.
看吧,我理解发展中国家。它们的业务系统可能没有我们国家那么完善。

In the United States, for example, I would simply call my phone provider, identify myself with the last four digits of the credit card I used when I signed up, and that's it. Ta-da! Voila! Bingo! No more phone number. Alternatively, I could do the deed online.
例如,在美国,我会打电话给我的手机运营商,用我注册时使用的信用卡的最后四位数来证明自己的身份,瞧,这样就搞定了。电话号码就没了。或者,我也可以在网上注销。

Not here.
这里却不行。

And so, for the better part of a day last weekend, I trekked glumly to Tianjin and back via train and taxi for a transaction that should have been easy to fulfill without leaving home: "Please cancel."
因此,在上个周末一天中的大部分时间,我乘火车和出租车,闷闷不乐地跋涉到天津后返回北京,完成了一项本来应该不需要出门就可轻松搞定的交易——“请注销号码。”

Getting a new number from China Unicom in Beijing was a snap.
在北京注册中国联通新号码是件轻而易举的事。

The office is located near home, so showing up in person was no problem.
营业厅离家很近,所以亲自过去是没有问题的。

But I was curious about the cancellation policy. Surprise! The same rules apply. If you ever want to cancel, you must show up in person again, even if you live in sub-Saharan Africa.
但我对手机号码注销规定很好奇。令我意外的是,北京的手机号码注销规则与天津是一样的。如果你想取消,即使你住在撒哈拉以南的非洲,你也必须再亲自跑一趟。

The final step in getting the Beijing number was the most interesting. I was asked to gaze into a camera, like you do at the bank.
拿到北京的手机号码的最后一步是最有趣的。他们要求我盯着摄像机,就像你在银行办理业务那样。

But the agent didn't just snap a picture: He asked me to bob my head up and down a few times. And then again. And again.
但营业厅工作人员人并不只是简单地拍一张照片,他还让我上下摆头几下,然后再重复两遍。

That's weird, I thought. Suddenly it dawned on me: He's capturing facial recognition information for a database.
我感觉很奇怪。后来,我突然明白了:他正在为数据库获取面部识别信息。

You'd think a telecommunications giant capable of handling technology like that ought to be able to do a little thing like change a customer's phone number without forcing him to travel in person to Timbuktu — or Tianjin. Maybe customer service is just one of those things that's developing.
你可能以为,一个这样的电信巨头应该能够解决一些小事,比如更改客户的电话号码,而不必强迫他亲自前往廷巴克图或天津。也许客户服务只是正在发展的事物之一。

 

本文仅代表作者本人观点,与本网立场无关。

英文来源:“CHINA DAILY”微信公众号
翻译:杨秀叶(实习生)
编审:丹妮 董静
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About the author & broadcaster

Randy Wright joined China Daily as an editor in 2013. His career spans 36 years and 10 newspapers in the United States in senior management, editorial writing and reporting roles. He served as adjunct faculty at the University of Arizona and has consulted for many publications, including the California Bar Journal for lawyers and judges. He is a licensed pilot in the US.

 

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