Deception & Hidden Fees -- anyone else?
I recently joined ATT's internet plan and let's just say the first month has been a rocky start. Please read the following two scenarios and let me know if you have had a similar experience. Thanks for sharing.
Incident #1 - The sales team: As any informed customer I started my search for a new ISP in my area. I had a choice between a few ATT, Spectrum and COX. I chose ATT because I have heard of them as being a reputable company and having a strong presence as an ISP/telecom/tv provider -- let's just say I regret that.
After about 30 minutes of chatting with an ATT representative I was provided information as to the monthly charges for my internet plan, which was an unbeatable price, wireless receiver and modem included. A great price and no installation fee, promised the agent. I ecstatically asked, "where do I sign" and the agent directed me to a link to follow and to submit some information to get set up.
Fast forward about 3 weeks, my first bill comes in with a $90.00+ installation fee. Trying to do some math, and having a technical background this is a job that takes less than 2 hours and the material is relatively inexpensive, I simply cannot understand that charge. Oh, and did I mention the first agent promised that I would have no installation fee? Well, I was promised free installation and upon laying the facts out for the ATT customer service agent helping me with my inquiry into the installation charge they simply say -- get this -- "there's no record of this in the notes. If you opt to sign up for another service such as TV or Phone, then the fee can be waived." At this point I had been transferred multiple times, on several occasions to departments that weren't available and immediately would end my call on me, even after being on hold upwards of 30+ minutes at a time only to get this outcome. I feel lied to and like information was withheld upon speaking with the first ATT agent who didn't disclose that there were certain eligibility requirements, having known that I only wanted internet. Shame on him, shame on this negligent behavior.
Incident #2 - The Installation: The installer shows up at the designated time and takes about 2 hours to setup the internet running cable no more than 20 feet from the line of demarcation to the interior of my house. How does a profession ISP not include or have the option to have shielded twisted pair for copper cabling that is running outside of a home susceptible to electro-magnetic interference. The installer was confused when I asked "is this STP or uSTP?" This is a networking basic! Very disheartened that a couple pennies on cost is worth providing sub-par material. Additionally, during the install the installer left the premises of my home for a period greater than 30 minutes. Do I need to say more? How hard is it to knock on the door and say "hey, I might be gone for a little while, but I am still setting up your service." Not very hard. When he punched down the wires to the telephone box on the inside of my house he cut off plastic and metal pieces that were about the size of a quarter of a penny big. I have two small cats in my home and this could have really hurt some of the most precious things in my life.
This being my first experience with ATT I would likely not recommend to a friend or family and say to be very weary of what you are getting yourself into. Needless to say I will spread this message to other blogs/websites based off of my personal experience. I wish ATT would have resolved this in a more professional manner consistent with "treat others how you want to be treated" methodology.