Get superfast AT&T Fiber internet
NotaFann's profile

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25 Messages

Sunday, July 23rd, 2023 8:28 PM

Existing customers pay $80.00 for the same thing (or far less) as new ones pay $35.00 for?

I live in an historic neighborhood; there is fiber to the box at the end of my block, and copper the rest of the way to my house.  ATT is pushing VERY hard for us to switch to fiber.  I would have switched a while back (of course!), if I had a half day to sit home so they could install it.  I just haven't had the time or freedom to skip work.  (Of course, I'm also thinking it's a certainty they will raise the price a LOT once we are all on fiber, if not sooner.  They always do.)

For a few years now, I've paid $80.00/month for broadband speeds "up to" 45Mbps.  Speed tests show that at some random off-peak times I do have that POTENTIAL capability.  However, during the week, I have Zoom calls drop frequently--during business hours, usually.  These calls use 1.5 to 1.8 Mbps maximum, yet they won't stay connected even when NOTHING ELSE in the house is using bandwidth.  I've done all the speed checks, router troubleshooting, etc. already.

This built-in limit is partly why, although I am also paying for a MONTHLY data allowance of 1536 GB, I have never used more than 330 GB/month.  I'd need 4-5 months to use that much at full speed.  At speeds sometimes apparently (at least intermittently for hours at a time) as low as1.8Mbps, it would take years!

I am paying for unreliable "broadband" which can't sustain a Zoom call at busy times, and would never make it possible to use the 1536 GB allowance they added to my plan.  I'm reading on other sites that the Internet traffic management system (PPS) functions the way throttling does.  This is by making unimportant users' access low priority, leaving room for businesses to use unlimited amounts. (Data limits and throttling are forbidden filthy words at AT&T, they say.)

It seems they are making my neighborhood a low-priority connection, which causes at some moments near-zero bandwidth for my house.  That's just long enough to make a Zoom call crash.  Is it coincidence that it started not long after the "switch to fiber!" letters arrived?  Common sense suggests that question, at least.

When I complain about the connection, they jump right over my questions and this math and push fiber installation.  This is obviously the back-up sales plan after the letters haven't worked.  AT&T is a megalith that ultimately will do whatever it takes to win; it seems practical just to cave in. Or switch service providers.

However!  They "promise not to change my monthly cost" and brag about the basic fiber plan of 300Mbps.  Meanwhile, they charge new customers (if they bundle wireless as I already do) just $35.00/month for the same 300Mbps, with a $100.00 gift card, while just $60.00/month would get me 1 GIGS download speed if I were a new customer AND a 150.00 gift card!  I am paying 80.00 for 45Mbps I am not actually getting when it matters most.

Let's see:  I am paying for at least 5 times the data allowance I can ever use, and $80.00/month for 45Mbps download speeds but can't count on a 1.5Mbps Zoom call to stay connected....And AT&T wants me to be grateful for being pushed to upgrade that they are willing to give me the slowest fiber they have for 2.5 times the rate new customers get?

REALLY!!!!  Can anyone explain how this is anything but coercion (throttling) and punishment for being loyal to AT&T but slow to upgrade?  Would you switch ISPs, rather than accept whatever AT&T wants to throw at us?

 

ACE - Professor

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5.8K Messages

7 months ago

Your original post indicated you were paying $80 for internet 45. New or existing customers wouldn’t pay $80 for internet 300.

Have you actually looked up your address to see what speeds and prices are available at your address? Called the loyalty department to question pricing? 

Please post what speeds and prices are available to you. 

Do not sign up over the phone. You won’t get gift cards. 

Tutor

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25 Messages

7 months ago

Yes, I have looked it up.  AT&T has been pushing us in this neighborhood to make the switch to fiber, so it is available. Here is one of several different pages showing plans.  It is my understanding that since this is ATT's home city, we do have fiber up to the green copper cable conjunction box at the end of the block. 

https://www.att-promotions.com/internet-lp/thank-you/

When I questioned why all of a sudden my Internet connection fails (starting mid-month, it seems, when I reach 10% of my 1536 GB data allowance) even when I can't be using more than 1/30th the available bandwidth, they pushed me to switch, reassuring me that "your price will stay the same".  It seems traffic control is very much interfering with my connection because as a copper holdover customer, I am a pain in the a$$ and need a nudge to cooperate.  They are making it unusable on purpose. 

(They're not singling out my house, I now realize, but it is not all month long.  That's only going to discourage people from using AT&T at all.  They are just not allowing anything like adequate service to copper customers in my block, and for some reason, there is a threshold--data used or something--that starts mid-month.  That violates the law, actually. And since I am paying for 45Mbps and getting <1.8Mbps, so that my Net is useless when I need it most, that p!sses me off in a big way.) When I call in, they offer me a cr@ppy deal on the new fiber, and that also makes me angry.

That's 80.00, what I pay now for the 45Mbps plan.  For that cost I would get whatever AT&T wants to give me for that price--which, as it turns out, is not what they're giving others for that price. I asked about going to the 300 to save money, as it's currently all I need.  I was told that even the the 300Mbps speed would be 60.00/month, even though the new customer price on the ATT web site is $35/month and a 100.00 gift card if you bundle wireless. 

I was told that existing customers have to keep the monthly price for Internet service they are already paying.  The tech person could bring it down to just $77/month with some HUGE 3 dollar discount for something or other.  It may be that I will be given the the higher speed for that price, but that isn't what he said.  I asked if it would get me what $80.00 does on the "see our plans!" page, before the starter discounts.  There 80.00 gets the "up to 1 GIG!" plan.  I was told that it would not.

He announced that going to just 300 would be incredible compared to the 45 I have now.  So I asked if the $35.00 would apply to me and he stated that I could not get a discount, except the 3.00/month for whatever (removal of a junk fee, I gathered).  So at the least I would have to pay 60.00/month, if I bundled my wireless, and it could be the whole 77.00--my current fee minus 3 bucks, for "UP to 300Mbps", while newcomers get 35.00 and the most anyone pays, it seems, is 60.00 for that speed. I didn't hear that I will get "up to 1 GIG!": for $77.00 or $80.00, though. So for "free installation" I would overpay for the slowest fiber plan forever.  Who knows what they would charge if later I asked to upgrade plans.

 So it might seem like a decent deal--300 speed compared to 45 for the same 80.00 and "free installation".  Except that I would still be paying 33% more than anyone else for the slowest plan they have, when others get 1 GIG for that and a 150.00 gift card. Not to mention in the fine print there is a disclaimer that says there will be "one-time fees" for SOMETHING related to installation. 

As for "no fee increases" and promised speeds:

Everyone supposedly gets "no annual fee increase" but no promise not to do monthly, biannually or any other type of increase.  In my experience and my reading, that is a joke; it means they won't do something NAMED "annual fee increase", but they will jack the price up monthly or add on special other fees--monthly, one-time; it doesn't matter--so that at the end of a year the total is so high you WISH you had just an "annual increase". Just like "no contract" sounds good until you realize that means "and we can change the fee at any time, as often as we like!"

You can Google "ATT fiber plans" and you'll get 4 different pages with 4 different prices, which tells me it is a shell game, where none of them lists the real price, which is the grand total of all fees, monthly cost, discounts, reward cards, etc.  They probably all add up to the same thing, anyway.

But if I do get 1 GIG for $80.00, that doesn't mean I will actually get it.  I have been saying that right now I ostensibly get 45Mbps, and cannot maintain one Zoom call, with nothing else in the house actively connected.  "Up to 1 GIG!" means "anything from zero to 1 GIG", and in the case of my 45, it is less than 1.8Mbps download speed at least some of the time.  That's what it takes to maintain a Zoom call.  A speed test showed it as 9Mbps down and 0.8 Mbps up with "jitter" in between.  Of course, most of the time it's something like 26 download and 2.5-4.6 upload. That's what I pay $80.00 for now.

Those are 2 separate issues, sort of but Donnie Jerko on this page remarked that I was whining ("Oh, the horror") over getting such good Internet access compared to what I have now. 

(edited)

ACE - Expert

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34.4K Messages

7 months ago

Keep in mind that those pages and pages of offers with different prices are mostly resellers including the one you posted in your reply.  Some of them are flat out lies.  Some of them include some sort of strange discounts the reseller worked out with AT&T.  Some of them may actually be AT&T's new customer pricing.  I believe that Dave006 suggested a way to get new customer pricing directly from AT&T already.

Historically the price for *DSL has been lower than that of fiber, though that's often not the case now; so the sales people may not have gotten the message that "same price" isn't the deal it used to be (and I will mention that often the order didn't put you at the same price after all and you did have to call them on it and get that fixed).

(edited)

Tutor

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25 Messages

7 months ago

But thank you for reasonable questions.  Ironically, I remember "customer loyalty department" now.  That's what you get when you've been driven by these shenanigans to calling the "terminate my service" department. 

Once they know you're leaving, suddenly a whole different shell game is available.  I'm guess it's supposed to fool us long enough to calm us down so we're too tired to switch, or let us save face if we didn't really want to bother--and sell us something at the same time.

But I hadn't thought of calling them first--at least they could transfer me back to the real "termination" department.  So maybe I'll call them.

ACE - Professor

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5.8K Messages

7 months ago

Another option is cancel your service. Have your spouse start new service in their name. If you don’t have a spouse. Just wait a week after the service is off and sign up as a new customer. 

That’s what I did. I was paying $70 for 1000. Downgrading to 300 would be $65 because I would lose my $20 promo. The wife opened a new account in her name. $55 for 300 and $150 in gift cards. We missed the $35 bundle discount because it started in July and we opened the new account in June.   

If you cancel,  Att may call you and offer discounts to come back. The pricing games aren’t fun but can work to your advantage. And yes the pricing and promos change a lot. At one point I had internet 1000 for $39.99. A 2018/2019 promo. 

o

(edited)

Tutor

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25 Messages

7 months ago

Dave,

I will look at that.  I already bundle wireless, landline and U-verse Internet, so I can't utilize that very clever solution.  But if I have to get Spectrum in place to keep connected while I wait for fiber, anyway, might as well just terminate service and then I'll (after some set period of time, no doubt) be a new customer.  I'm only half kidding.

I checked, and 80.00 gets 1 GIG and and 150.00 reward card, 65=500 speed and reward card, 55 gets 300 speed, with reward card...all after 5.00 discount for paperless billing.

I already get only 5.00 off for bundling AND paperless billing AND keeping  a 62.00 landline.  If I wanted 1 GIG for the 80.00 and the promised "no installation cost" instead of the reward card, are they going to charge me sneaky "one time administrative fees" in the fine print for "free" installation?

Thanks for the great idea about cellular; too bad I couldn't use it.  You did disconnect your Uverse, though, didn't you?

Tutor

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25 Messages

7 months ago

@brondk:   Great ideas! I don't have a partner to do that right now, and can't interrupt service. I work in the medical field and must be able to see patient information and answer messages through HIPAA-complaint software not available to my SmartPhone.  I don't work at home per se, but it's anytime vs. all-the-time access.  If I have to get Spectrum for a while, maybe I will...and if I do, I will try it for 6 months.  If it maintains a reliable connection, I'll keep it until they raise the price and be a new customer at AT&T or somewhere else.  I hate going backward, tech-wise, but don't really need more speed. Fiber is the best for Internet consumption, no doubt, but respect tastes good, too. :-)

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