Saturday, January 03, 2009

Back to the mundane--got any advice on Charter telephone?

From the intellectual to the mundane:

AT & T has gotten increasingly aggressive in their marketing, sending pairs of salesmen (one older woman and one young man each time) to thunder on my door repeatedly. They want to sell me a package in which I have to sign up for cable TV, which I do not want, have my house wired for it, and then cancel it. I really do not want to do this.

However, I am indeed paying too much for Charter internet service. Having internet with one company and phone with a different company does get you a poor price for each. So I'm thinking of switching my phone to Charter. Somehow I feel less nervous about making a change in my phone technology than making a change in my internet technology. This may not be rational, however.

Do any of my esteemed readers have experience with either AT & T internet (I hear it's DSL rather than cable modem) or Charter telephone? On Facebook I have so far one very negative review of AT & T internet service. In December, my Charter internet has had a few connectivity problems, but I will say that they have resolved them. More importantly, when I called tech support and talked to a person, I got a nice American guy with a charming southern accent who knew what he was talking about. This was a big improvement over someone with an Indian accent you could cut with a knife who patronized the customer and was clearly working from a flip chart. So I'm cautiously still satisfied with Charter internet. But they are charging me too much, which they will stop doing (they say) if I switch my phone to them.

Hmmm. One doesn't want one's phone suddenly not to be working right, either.

It would be ironic if A T & T's pushiness lost them a phone customer, though. The devil in me would sort of like to make that happen.

All advice taken in the spirit in which it is intended.


alaiyo said...

We have AT&T DSL internet (live in SE TN) and have had no appreciable problems. Now and then it gets slow, but not often (usually it turns out one of us is downloading something massive), and we've never had it just quit on us. We don't have the top-grade speed option, either, but except for those occasional times, it's always fast and available. I think we're paying $20.00 a month. I wouldn't switch.

Mary said...

I've had DSL from AT&T ever since it was first offered under the old Bell South -- 15 years or so, I think. I experienced some problems in the early years but none during the last 5 yrs or so. I'm very pleased with the speed and the overall service/

Mary said...

Forgot to give you my location - SW TN, the Memphis area/

Lydia McGrew said...

Thanks for the info, guys.

On the other side, I'm getting very little data, period, good or bad, on Charter telephone. I think this must be because Charter's nationwide phone services are relatively new, so not many people have Charter for phone. Even Google isn't turning up many customer reviews, though I've seen one negative one. I looked at their FAQ and was struck by their even having to address the issue of a power outage. Seems their service comes with a battery backup to keep your phone service going in case of a power outage. Hmmm. That issue doesn't even arise with plain old telephone.

Jeremy said...

AT&T customer service is really pathetic. The fact that you would need to connect and then cancel seems pretty typical to me. I swore never to use them again after a bad experience when I switched to them, but that was in 1998 or so, so I have softened somewhat.

I have phone and internet through the same company, and it is a pain when service is interrupted, no outside connection at all. I have to go digging for my pay-as-you go cell phone.

Lydia McGrew said...

My husband raised that very question, Jeremy: Just occasionally Charter has had connection problems during the past month. If I switched my phone service to them, and they had a similar connection problem in the future, would my phone be out as well? That would be a huge bummer. At least this way, with the two independent, I could always call customer service when there was a problem with the Internet connection.

This is all beginning to sound like I should just stay put. Charter may be best for internet and is the "devil I know," and AT & T has been doing phone for longer than anyone else and never seems to have any connection problems, even in the worst storms. Perhaps it's worth it to pay a little more to let each company do what it does best and not put all my eggs in one basket.

TS said...

We got AT&T everything (phone/cable/internet) last week and so far everything's fine (for what that's worth). I was told by Time Warner I could expect slow internet service from AT&T since the bandwidth is shared by any HD TVs we have, so if they are on the 'Net slows.

But then our internet was dead slow with Time Warner and our cable pretty much sucked so it was a no-brainer to switch since AT&T is cheaper.

Todd McKimmey said...

We have AT&T Uverse which is outstanding. It's gone out once in a year and that had more to do with the over-enthusiastic backhoe driver than anything with AT&T itself. They even rolled our phone, internet, cable and cell phone packages together and got a great discount.

vishal said...
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