I have been using Verizon DSL for a few years and have found that although their customer support is rather lacking, the Verizon DSL service itself has been very reliable.
Recently, Verizon made a small change to their service and forgot to tell me. This change affected my ability to send e-mail through outlook express and it would have been very considerate of Verizon to inform its customers of such a changes in advance.
Instead, Verizon did not tell me of any impending service changes. When I discovered I could not send e-mail out, this was my notification of a service change. Strike one!
Since I generally try my best to avoid calling customer support (usually to keep my blood pressure down and to help prevent me from making an ass of myself) e-mailed Verizon tech support… well, that is, I e-mailed the three sentences that would fit in their tech support window. Not every problem fits in three lines of text! Strike two!!
I soon discovered why I only had three lines to state my tech case, my message was never sent to a live person. Verizon e-mail tech support is run, apparently, solely by bots (automated systems) that search for keywords and send out possible solutions based on the keywords in those three lines of text. Strike three!!!
I absolutely HATE bot run support systems!!!
A bot almost never has the correct answer to a complex, or multi-part, question.
As it turns out though, this time the bot did send a link with the information I needed to get my e-mail working again, but by then, I was already steaming mad at the whole process to the point of checking out other internet service providers.
Enter Comcast. Yes, I know how much you detest Comcast, Walt.
Mind you, this e-mail problem was back in early December. It has long since been fixed… and I had long since, December 5, 2006, put in my order to get Comcast service.
Today, January 12, 2007, I finally have the Comcast service working.
If it was not for the nice people on the Comcast phone tech support system (yes, I gave in and called), I would have aborted this Comcast adventure a long time ago. This has been one long and drawn out affair to get this service.
1. Received the self-installation kit on December 12, 2006. Unfortunately, some moron shipped the wrong package. I got the cables and software but no modem (I have spare cables and I didn’t even want the software – all I really needed was the modem – the one item that did not arrive).
2. This is when I first contacted Comcast tech support only to find that, yes, the modem is on my Comcast bill, but my order was through MSN High Speed Marketplace so they are the ones I am supposed to call to get my problem solved. This is when I find out just how big a mistake it is to buy anything through MSN… warning to everyone, never, and I mean, NEVER, buy anything through MSN!!!
3. I search, and I search, and I search,… and I search, but there was absolutely no way to contact tech support for MSN High Speed Marketplace. There are absolutely no contact phone numbers or e-mail addresses anywhere on any of their pages. There is literally no way get them to send me the missing modem that Comcast was charging me for (and even worse, when I finally did get through to MSN – they automatically switched me over to Verizon because my MSN package is through Verizon – yeah, like Verizon is going to help me find a Comcast modem that MSN failed to send!).
4. Finally, after nearly a month, I decide enough is enough and call Comcast and tell them that I want to cancel the deal. I guess I am a sucker for a sweet soft voice though. I am talked into giving their service one more try. This time, they, Comcast, will finally send the modem that MSN High Speed Marketplace did not.
5. January 5, 2007. The modem FINALLY arrives… but I did not hear the delivery person knock on the door so it was delivered to the apartment complex office instead. My sleep/awake schedule has been a bit off normal lately, so the office was generally about to close when I was getting ready for breakfast… anyway, it took a couple more days for me and the modem to get together.
6. I finally got the modem from the office the other day and set everything up. I plugged everything in… only to find that I was not getting a connection. I fumbled around with it, off and on, for two days on my own. I still have Verizon so I did not feel rushed to get it working right away.
Today, I finally gave in and called Comcast Tech support and now the service is working. I have to say that most, but not all, of the Comcast tech support team I have talked with, over the last month, have been friendly... but it still took over a month to get my service no matter how nice the Comcast tech support team has been. I hope this experience is not an indication of how Comcast internet service will be in the long run. Once I let go of Verizon, I will not tolerate this kind of long delay in getting my connection problems solved. My beef with Verizon is not so bad that I cannot just dump Comcast and go back to Verizon should I run into any more significant problems.
Anyway, that is what I went through just to change an ISP. Now if I can just get my web site switched to the new host… that too is beginning to become a long and drawn out affair!