Well the verdict on VOIP with AT&T is that it’s well worth it. Except for one outage with our broadband….COMCRAP….err…I mean Comcast, the phone works like a champ. I will run some tests to see how much bandwidth the phone actually needs and post my results here.
This leads me to my other gripe about Comcast. I’ve worked on a help desk before in both a Level 1 and a Level 2 capacity, so I know what I’m talking about. When you’re not going to give your Level 1 (first line of defense) ‘technicians’ (and I use that term lightly) access to any quality information, why have them at all? Last Saturday (3/12/05) we suffered an outage of our internet. Cable tv worked great. Internet? Not so great. After doing the usual troubleshooting on my end, rebooting my various routers, my cable modem, my computer, etc… I waited. I usually wait a few hours to see if the problem clears itself. Yes, that’s right! I call Comcast as a last resort. Pretty sad when I pay them close to $50 a month for this service and I can’t ever get anything useful out of their ‘techs’.
I finally decided to call after my internet connection was down for a couple of hours. Which meant that we had to leave our house because our cell phones don’t work in our house or on our block. My wife spoke to the ‘technician’. My wife asked the ‘technician’ a very simple question, “Are there any reported outages in our area?”. The ‘technicians’ answer? No.
Now getting back home, I decided to reboot everything again and again no internet. During the next 5 minutes, I was able to get sporadic web pages to show up which meant the service was going up and down. I was able to get to comcast.net and find their network health page buried inside of the site. What do you think I found there? That’s right! A network outage affecting Portland/Beaverton. WTF?? Are you telling me that the ‘technician’ my wife had on the phone doesn’t have access to the same #$%@! information that I got on your !#%%#^&#@ webpage???
Believe me, if I had another choice that wasn’t DSL, I’d be gone. Are you listening Comcast??