Yesterday morning I woke up to be confronted by Bill with his iPad in hand. Even before I poured my bran flakes into my cereal bowl, he said "I can't get on the Internet."
"Oh here we go again" I thought. Losing Internet service was almost a weekly feature when we have Verizon DSL Internet service. Finally, back in 2011 I gave up on Verizon ever getting FIOS in our development in my lifetime and against my better judgement and because I had no other choice, I went with Comcast. Of course the service cost more than twice as much as my Verizon ($75 a month versus Verizon's $30 a month), at least I would have dependable service.
Another reason I was reluctant to go with Comast in addition to the high cost was because of my past history with Comcast. I'm not going to bore you with all my past dealings with Comcast when we first moved into the development where we now live but suffice it to say Comcast more than lived up to it's reputation for having one of the worst customer services records in the industry. Quite literally they are awful.
Now I'll know I'll get a comment on this blog posting from a Comcast representative because they obviously spend a lot of money to monitor anything negative said about Comcast on the Internet. The comment is always the same, from a customer representative who is willing to help me to assuage my bad experience. My question is: Why don't they spend the money on good customer service up front (like Apple for instance) than spend so much money on the end after the bad experience.
So I made the call to Comcast yesterday. After going through the usual automated menu options I got a live person, who I could only understand about 70% of the time (I couldn't determine if he had an accent or was just bored) and who was obviously reading from a script instead of actually listening to what I had to say.
I told him that I didn't have an Internet connect. He did the usual apologies then proceeded to walk me through the usual "checking the connections." He asked about my Wifi "connector". I told him that I only have a modem, which was supplied by Comcast (now at $10 a month - up from the original $8.00 a month then $9.00 a month and now, viola! $10. 00 a month). He said "Then you don't have Wifi. Uh.......I DO have wifi. In fact I have my own network. He said again "No, you don't have Wifi, you probably have a hotspot." Here we go again folks, reminds me of the time when I moved in here in 2006 and I was being billed by Comcast for service that I wasn't receiving. I called Comcast and told them I wasn't receiving service only to be told "Our records indicate that you are receiving service." I told them again, "I'm not receiving service." Again, the Comcast service person told me "But you are." They were arguing with me!
I told them to come out and check for themselves to see what I was telling them was the truth. The next day, in the pouring rain (of course), a sullen service person came out and did indeed confirm that I WAS NOT RECEIVING SERVICE. Of course no apology, or anything. He did set me up for service and left his wet footprints on my wall to wall carpet in my office (oh why did I ever opt for wall to wall carpet when I had this house built)?
I had several other interactions with Comcast, including their TV service with similar results. An employee with an attitude that they were doing me a favor and argumentative and not at all customer orientated.
Back to my call yesterday. The service tech that I was talking to yesterday transferred me to someone else (of course he did). This was a young lady named "Shantel" (hope I got the spelling right). She was nicer and DIDN'T have an accent (thank goodness). She actually listened to me and thought that I needed a new modem-router combination. She also scheduled an appointment to have a service tech stop by the house here at Casa Tipton-Kelly to see why I still don't have an Internet connection. But the earliest she could make the call was NEXT TUESDAY. Wow. Can you believe it? Even she thought that was too long, so after a long hold on the phone she said a service tech would stop by today between 2 and 5 pm. She said he would "try to squeeze me in" but could make no promises that he would actually be here. Ah yes, Comcast continues to amaze with their customer service. You know folks, when I call DirecTV, they would send me the equipment overnight and have a service guy (or gal) here the NEXT day. But we're dealing with Comcast here, who apparently wants to maintain their reputation as one of worst customer service companies today. Total time on the phone yesterday one hour and forty-six minutes of guy life which I will never have back again.
The time now is 3:43 PM. No service man (or gal) yet. No phone call either. Do you think anyone will actually come today? I don't. And tomorrow I work so they can't come. And what are the odds of them coming Friday or God forbid, on the weekend? Not likely. But folks, I am prepared to be amazed.
So how am I managing this write this blog and post it on the Internet now? Simple, I'm using my neighbor's Wifi. Thank you Barbara.
And by the way, those of you who use Comcast and are tempted to tell me "Why I don't have a problem with Comcast" . . . all I have to say to you is "Well, aren't you special?"
I would use another Internet service company but there ARE NO OTHER INTERNET SERVICE COMPANIES IN MY AREA. And Comcast knows it and it shows in their attitude towards their customers. Believe me, I know.
Come one Verizon, get FIOS in here!
Update 4:29 PM
Of course the Comcast service person did not arrive. No phone call. I'm on Hold now with Comcast. They said the next available time for a service call is NEXT TUESDAY, DECEMBER 22. Yes folks, a WEEK since my Internet service went out.
Now get this, they said they would give a $20 credit on my SERVICE CALL BILL because no one showed up today. Uh, I am not supposed to be charged AT ALL BECAUSE I RENT THE EQUIPMENT. They checked and viola! I was right. No served charge because the call is equipment related.
Folks, it take a lot of patience. I blasted the person I was talking to on the phone a little bit but I understand how it is to be a lowly munchkin on the other end of the line being paid by an unfeeling corporate giant to be a punching bag for customer's frustrations.
Ah Comcast, your reputation continues to grow.