Techwatch has been receiving a flood of complaints about Skyphones.org this month, claiming that the company is not paying out for mobile phones sent to it.
Skyphones is one of the newer businesses advertising themselves as a mobile phone recycling company.
However, not only are consumers reporting they are not receiving their money, they are also reporting that they are unable to contact Skyphones about the issues.
We did a little digging here at Techwatch towers, and despite trying to call Skyphones multiple times, we constantly receive a default engaged tone. The company appears unable to answer the phone.
Additionally, the Facebook group created by Skyphones themselves reads as nothing but a string of complaints about the company not paying up.
While the first posts on Facebook give the impression of general satisfaction at its launch 4 months ago, these quickly deteriorate even after the first weeks.
The complaints start with less money being offered for mobile phone recycling than originally stated on the website.
Then they become a torrent of complaints about payments not being made, phones not being returned, and the company being uncontactable.
Various claims of contacting Trading Standards and being advised of Skyphones being in “breach of contract” appear to have been made - all without any response from Skyphones themselves.
In all the barrage of complaints about Skyphones on their own Facebook page, there is only a single reply from someone claiming to be from the company, who only appears briefly four months ago to apologise for late payments due to company computer problems.
There is no further word from them after.
There are also a number of similar complaints on the Money Saving Expert forums.
Is Skyphones.org a scam?
It could simply be that Skyphones are unable to cope with the volume of mobile phones being sent to them, as opposed to anything more nefarious.
However, at this stage, unless Skyphones are able to make a public comment on why the internet is fast becoming littered with complaints about them, we can only recommend consumers think twice about sending their phones to the company.
We’ve covered the issue before: Mobile Phone Recycling companies: scam? A review, where we pointed out that there are a small number of companies who have been in the business for years and can be considered generally reliable.
Companies such as Fonebank, MobilePhoneXchange, Mazuma Mobile, and Envirofone, all seem to have passed the test of time, despite some customer care problems along the way - issues these companies are believed to have addressed long ago.
However, there remains a slew of less reputable companies, often working as nothing more than referrers, affiliates, or lead generation websites for the industry, where they are unable to provide any degree of customer support.
It remains unclear what the problem with Skyphones.org is at present - however, as the company appears incapable of answering press requests for comment, you may want to think very hard as to whether you really want to send your mobile phones to Skyphones.