(Note: This was typed on Friday, 7/9, but not posted until now.)
I need to rant about the craptasticness of AT&T, and I feel this warrants its own thread, just in case anybody might be thinking of signing up for service with them. In this case, it's not the normal crappy cellular quality that I'm going to rant about, but rather their customer service (or lack thereof).
I'm going to preface this by telling you a short story about when I moved late last year, and needed to get my AT&T landline/DSL service moved to my new place. AT&T was supposed to turn off service in my old locale on a particular morning, and then turn it on at the new locale later that same day. They turned off the old service a day earlier than they were supposed to, making it a pain in the ass not having internet access the day before I was supposed to move. For reasons which I don't exactly remember, they didn't switch on service in my new place until about 10 days later. For that, I got half off my DSL service for the next 6 months (I'm amazed they didn't screw that up).
So fast forward to last week, and I wanted to shut down my landline service but keep DSL. Of course, nothing at AT&T is as straightfoward as it should be, and this was no exception. Instead of just turning off my landline phone and leaving the DSL on, I was told that they'd have to shut down both the landline and DSL (old account), then activate a new 'dry loop' DSL account. So already, I'm dreading having to do this, thinking of all the ways they'd end up f**king this up. And they did indeed f**k it up, but the way they did it was not anything I could've imagined.
I talked to a guy at AT&T support and told him my horror story from before, and I said I absolutely could not afford to have that happen this time, because I'm now working from home. He assured me that all would go well, and even arranged to have AT&T turn on the new account Tuesday (7/6/10), and turn off the old one on Thursday (yesterday), so that there would be no interruption in service. Since this thread is a rant, you can imagine how this is going to go down ...
They didn't turn on the dry loop on Tuesday as promised, so when I called them up, the tech support guy said, "I dunno why they told you we could do that, as we can't turn on the new until we switch off the old." I was told that the old would be turned off and the new turned on Thursday, and everything would go smoothly. When Thursday rolls around, I woke up to discover that my landline/DSL had been switched off, but no new dry loop account set up yet. This isn't a problem, because they said it might take til 8pm. So I try again at 8pm last night, and surprisingly, it worked! I was amazed, thinking that AT&T had actually done something right. When I got up this morning, it was still working. So, you think this story has a happy ending? WRONG!!!
I went to the gym today at about 1pm, and the DSL service was working fine when I left, but when I got back, it was off again. I called their tech support and they said that billing needed to talk to me about something. So I called billing and they said nothing was wrong, transferred me back to support. Support said that their system showed the account had been CANCELED, even though I just activated it last night. So the lady in support said she would conference me in with billing. We waited on hold for about 20 minutes trying to get through to billing, when she said she'd call me back when she was able to reach someone.
So billing calls me back about 30 minutes later, saying they have no idea why the account was cancelled, as there is no note left on the account to explain the cancellation. Ok then, sh*t happens. Can you get me hooked back up this afternoon? Nope, can't do it... earliest on Monday. So now I'm looking at going all weekend without internet, and they're probably going to take several more days getting their sh*t together, and now I have a lot to explain to my boss. So, what recourse do I have? I could call Time Warner, but those bastards are already on my sh*tlist. Whereas AT&T have been incompitent, Time Warner are out and out villans. Plus, the DSL service has been rock solid the whole time I've had it (about 10 years) and I'm loathed to give it up. If only I could just get the f**king dolts at AT&T to turn on the goddamn connection, and LEAVE IT ON.
In a pinch, I decide to call Verizon to see if they can get tethering turned on for my Droid Incredible, so at least I can get online at home for now. As this phone doesn't have a clean root method yet, I can't tether for free. I believe there's like a $40 android app that would let me tether, but figured I'd go legit this time, since one month of tethering would be cheaper than the app, and HOPEFULLY the phone will be fully rooted by the time I need to do this again. So I called Verizon, and was on hold less than 2 minutes. (Mind you, I've had cell phone service with them for about 3 months, and this is the first time I've spoken with anybody there, since I've never had any issues with the setup or the service.) The guy who answered my call had the tethering option turned on in a jiffy. He told me where to download the software (I made the call at work), and answered all the questions I had. I got home and now I'm rocking an internet connection via USB tethering from my Droid Incredible.
Story to be continued ...