Phillip Jefferies bought his Palm Pre for $199 at a Sprint store in Everett. It came with a $100 rebate, or did it?

I was supposed to end up paying $99 for the phone now, Phillip told me, it's almost Christmas and I still haven't been able to get my rebate.

Phillip is tired of chasing Sprint for his money.

I feel like they are trying to run out the clock and I end up paying $199 for a $99 phone, he said.

Since August, Sprint denied his rebate saying his number could not be identified.

So I called the number on the very document refusing the rebate, and it worked just fine.

Brian said during this ordeal, he couldn't get a hold of a real person on the phone.

An e-mail from Sprint said the rebate center can't make outgoing calls, so I called their direct line,extension after extension. Even I couldn't talk to a real person.

Recording after recording, we gave up trying.

So I wentto find a real person from Sprint somewhere andcame across a Sprint van at Westlake Center. Iran into a district manager there who can't talk to the press, but seemed like a nice guy.

I told him I couldn't find a real person to talk to Phillip about his rebate issue and he said, Put them in contact with me.

On that very day Phillip's rebate was approved, but he still wants the process to become a little more human.

Something has gone wrong obviously with their process here, how they handle these rebates and it doesn't seem like there's anyone equipped to fix it, he said.

One way to avoid this mess, some cellular providers will give instant rebates if you buy your phone online. Companies will also run instant rebate promotions. You may want to look for those deals, before getting in the mail-in rebate game.

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