Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Why I switched to Verizon

I don't think anyone's ever attempted to argue that Comcast isn't really easy to order.*  That's not really the point.  The problem comes after one has ordered, and it's time to deal with this crummy company and it's overpriced, underdelivered service.
Here's a conversation I had with Comcast back in January.  It's pretty much a carbon copy of a conversation I'd had with Comcast roughly every four months for the past six years.  And except for the occasional visit from a Comcast Technician who managed to spend an hour or so at and around my apartment to accomplish Absolutely Nothing, conversations like this pretty much summed up my six years of being a Comcast Customer.

John : My Issue: Intermittent service, very slow service.
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Karen Rochelle: Hello John, Thank you for contacting Comcast Live Chat Support. My name is Karen Rochelle. Please give me one moment to review your information.
Karen Rochelle: How are you doing today?
Karen Rochelle: I understand how it feels when the internet service is not working as it is supposed to. I know the urgency of this issue and since I have some troubleshooting steps in hand, I can definitely give you those. I will be very willing to go through this with you.
John : it took ten minutes to connect to your CHAT.
Karen Rochelle: Are you using a router or a wireless router?
John : My internet is actually working as it usually does with Comcast- on occasion, subject to blacking out at any time.
John : Here we go. I am using a wireless router
Karen Rochelle: How many computers are connected to your Comcast internet service?
John : One.
John : I have a script too, to go along with yours. It saves time. Do we get to the part where you ask me to unplug everything on page one, or is that page two?
Karen Rochelle: If you are currently using a router we will bypass the router.
Karen Rochelle: To check the actual speed from the modem straight to the computer hardwired.
John : ok go ahead and do that
Karen Rochelle: Do you have the account number with you?
John : no
Karen Rochelle: Can you please check the make and model of your modem?
John : I rent the modem from you. Why don't you look at my account and see an exact picture of the modem I am using? you asked for my phone number just before I started this chat
Karen Rochelle: We need to make sure that the modem you are using is same with what is in the account. Thank you!
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John : so your suspicion is that I've unplugged the modem that I'm renting from you and am using another one? Sure, that makes sense. Ok, hold on a second.
John : it's an Arris Modem, TM702G1CT
Karen Rochelle: No. We just need to make sure that its the same modem. Since you can not use a different modem as well.
Karen Rochelle: Thank you.
Karen Rochelle: Is the modem connected to computer?
Karen Rochelle: Without a third party device?
John : no, it is not connected to the computer.
Karen Rochelle: Please bypass the third party device and connect the modem straight to the computer using an ethernet cable.
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John : I just did that, and lost my connection. Just like the first dozen times someone from Comcast told me to do that
Karen Rochelle: Hi. I believe you have already bypassed the router.
Karen Rochelle: Right now are you connected hardwired to the modem?
John : no.....when I do that, I lose the connection entirely
Karen Rochelle: You will lost the connection but we will be re connected.
Karen Rochelle: Just make sure not to close this page.
John : and how long is that supposed to take?
John : ok I'll try again
Karen Rochelle: We need to have a direct connection from the modem to the computer.
Karen Rochelle: Thank you.
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Karen Rochelle: Hi.
Karen Rochelle: Did you already bypass the router?
John : yes
John : so are still connected?
Karen Rochelle: Thank you.
Karen Rochelle: Please run a speed test.
Karen Rochelle: You may use this link: http://speedtest.net/
John : I am not able to stay online long enough to run the speedtest, even when directly connected, the EasySolve window pops up- this is pathetic
John : $135 a month. For THIS.
Karen Rochelle: I perfectly understand you, John. I am a subscriber myself.
Karen Rochelle: However we need to isolate the router.
John : I think it's great that Comcast "understands." What I don't think is so great is the constant calls to Comcast to get it fixed, the visits, and the continued problems. I am connected directly, like you told me to. What do you want me to do now?
Karen Rochelle: Please run a speed test.
Karen Rochelle: You may open a different browser, make sure not to close this page.
John : wow, really? I just explained to you that the link you sent me won't open
Karen Rochelle: You may try it one more time.
John : I am trying again. It keeps Timing Out. Now I'm getting an adorable "Oops!" message.
Karen Rochelle: Did you open a different browser?
John : its working now
Karen Rochelle: Once its done please send the speed test result.
John : download speed 53.18
John : PING 12
John : upload 10.71
Karen Rochelle: Thank you for running the test.
Karen Rochelle: I would like to inform you that you do have Blast Internet Service on your account: upload speed of 20Mb - 25Mb and a download speed of 2Mb- 4Mb. .
John : yes I know- "Blast" here seems to be shorthand for "the internet, sometimes, when we feel like connecting you"
John : sounds to me like I am paying for a service I am not getting
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Karen Rochelle: That means to say you are getting what you are supposed to get.
Karen Rochelle: All we need to do is to update and synchronize your equipments. I will also be refreshing your line which might cause some disruption in this chat. But it would just be for a couple of seconds. Okay?
John : sure
Karen Rochelle: Thank you.
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Karen Rochelle: Hi, are you still with me? I can see here that you have successfully entered the chat room. I'm still here to assist you.
John : yes I am here
Karen Rochelle: I have just completed the process from my end, . I have refreshed your modem's connection from the system, sent signals to the modem which also corrected any errors that's in the network and ensures a faster and stable connection.
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John : so can I unplug now?
Karen Rochelle: Not yet.
Karen Rochelle: We need to observe the connection for atleast 24 hours.
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John : ok
Karen Rochelle: Please make sure there are no loose wirings.
Karen Rochelle: If you are not experiencing any service drop and you have a stable speed that means its a third party issue.
John : so what now?
Karen Rochelle: I greatly appreciate your patience and cooperation. Before we part ways, I want to make sure that we have covered everything. Is there anything else you need to discuss with? I will be more than willing to address them for you.
John : how long am I supposed to keep this directly plugged in?
Karen Rochelle: For 24 hours please.
John : so at 445 tomorrow I can unplug it? and then what? My computer is going to go to sleep long before that
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John : I am getting dropped every few minutes
The chat session has been closed
analyst Karen Rochelle has left room
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Karen Rochelle: Analyst has closed chat and left the room
And user John has now dumped Comcast.  I'm so unreasonable.

*I do like the way this guy orders internet service while his Significant Other is sound asleep next to him in bed.  Just a girlfriend who decided to spend the night?  Because seriously, if that's his wife, isn't this something they should discuss before purchasing?


  1. Well, it's not as if you're going to get them to admit that their 'service' is a disservice. That only happened in the Cheese Shop sketch on Python.

  2. I think they named "Blast Service" after what their British customers always seem to say.

    Good luck with Verizon.