Sunday, October 13, 2013

The trouble with Triple

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Beloved Wife and Goat were finally cajoled by Itisalot into getting a fibre-optic cable to deliver all landline-based telecomms to the Crumbling Villa. It's slow; it's expensive. But cheaper than paying for wireless internet plus a separate landline. And basic cable TV was thrown in too. hence 'Triple Play': Telephone, Internet and TV all for a single monthly payment.

And all was well for a few months, until the cable TV stopped working. The Goat got around to calling Customer Care about six weeks ago, and a new set-top box was duly delivered by one of Itisalot's technicians. He said that it would configure itself over the next hour or so, and all would be well.

The following day, the Goat was on the phone to Customer Care again. All was far from well. The replacement set-top box was as dysfunctional as the first.

There followed around two weeks and a dozen appointments for technicians to resolve the problem. Five actual visits later, a tech declared that there was no more he could do, and the complete lack of cable TV was a total mystery. A subsequent technician promised to return the following day with yet another new set-top box, configured for use, and with a working remote control.

But he never showed up, instead choosing to close the complaint. So a couple of weeks later when the Goat rang Customer Care yet again, Itisalot had been under the impression that the problem had been fixed. The Goat theorises that technicians are on some kind of bonus/penalty scheme, and closing a complaint even if it's not fixed results in a new complaint being generated, rather than the technician being berated for his failure to perform.

In fact, three times the Goat's complaints were closed without a technician addressing the problem. Or turning up at the Crumbling Villa. Or phoning the Goat to make an appointment. The absence of a solution was getting beyond irritating.

Enough being enough (and then some), today the Goat undertook to reduce his 'Triple Play' to 'Double Play' (internet and landline only) with the consequent AED40/month reduction, backdated six weeks to when he first reported the problem. He had to go to an Itisalot Business Centre with the set-top box and wait first for twenty minutes, and then for a further thirty, to obtain An Audience With Itisalot.

Far from obtaining his AED40/month reduction in subscription, the Goat is now persuaded financially to keep 'Triple Play', even though part of it doesn't work. The reason?

Itisalot's cajoling way back included a special offer of AED229/month instead of the normal AED299. 'Double Play' is AED259/month, which is indeed AED40 less for no cable TV.

AED229 is £39, which is for up to 1Mbps. How much do you pay for your internet?

It would be ludicrous to hand back the set-top box and pay an extra AED30/month, and in an attack of irony, Itisalot even said that the Goat would have to pay AED100 to downgrade his subscription.

The Goat has packed the useless device away. He'll probably ring Customer Care every now and then, just to see if a technician is ever invented who can actually fix the problem, but he's not holding his breath.

Edited on 23rd October to note that the Goat received an unsolicited SMS from Itisalot on 20th October to advise that a technician would be visiting tomorrow to fix the problem. And to date, the Cable TV still seems to be working. Its only taken 51 days.



Rupert Neil Bumfrey said...

Just over $10 a month, unlimited in Kyiv, Ukraine, but with so many providers I am sure better value could be found :-)

Grumpy Goat said...

How fast is your internet, Rupert?


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