How bad can an ISP go? ( London , 25/09/2006 )
I recently moved house and applied for a new Virgin broadband connection as my ex-ISP Telewest was unavailable there. Even though Telewest was expensive, they had a pretty good connection and service.
So last Friday evening, I got my Virgin 8Mbps/unlimited connection ($46/month) activated, after a week's time of waiting/ I quickly setup a wireless network with a Belkin ADSL mimo router and everything went just fine. First thing I did was check the connection speed using some popular online services and the results were impressive. A few minutes passed, and to my dismay I found that the connection speed was fluctuating every now and then, for no reason. To make things worse, I found that a lot of websites were'nt opening on the connection, like digg.com, Hotmail.com, my university website etc.. etc.. Even the Microsoft site wouldn't load and MSN messenger wouldn't work. Weird, I played with the wireless configs, dns settings, tried everything I knew, but no avail.
The interesting part
I then phoned up the Virgin customer support, which costs $.50 / minute. To my surprise, support was very rude, like "I asked for your username and password mate, nothing else". Waste of money and time, they were helpless and hopeless.
Then I tried Virgin's online livesupport chat room. This time, the support wasn't rude, but stupid. Do you use IE? Have you checked your settings? standard questions. "Try using some proxy servers" ! that was the final solution the guy suggested. When I told him that was totally absurd and stupid, he said he's forward the issue to the technical department and said "sorry, I cannot help you any further".
That was it, I called Virgin's "cancellation line" and submitted a cancellation request, and it costs $100 to cancel too. Cancelled in less than 24 hours of the reception of the service.
Virgin is the worst ISP I've ever used, bad bad services, useless support. No wonder why their connections are not bound by a contract.
Sir Richard Branson, if only your broadband was something like Virgin Air. I hope Virgin Galactic's space tour program doesn't abandon passengers in space