Clear Wireless is Dead

Posted at 2:49:57 PM in Vendors (37)

I wrote another article about Clear and a merger with a Japanese company called Softbank. Clear was established as a separate corporation but ran under the umbrella of Sprint. Now you can't buy anything from Clear, but those who had Clear Modems could still use the service. It seems Sprint or the company that bought Sprint is trying to kill Clear by "souring the tit."

At the beginning of this year, the monthly charge for the service went up from 49.99 to 54.99 without notice. But last night's service was dismal. I'm use to a second stream causing issues on the network. I had noted before latency of *3000 to 4000 msec ping times with only two streams going (of course there is always more going on, i.e. updates to software, software maintaining heartbeats for services and such, but these streams are the main process, watching movies or playing a game). It is to the point that the person playing a game will insist that everyone stop watching movies so he can play. 

Last night while working remotely, a Netflix movie and Manga on another computer, I was observing *7000 to 8000 msec latency from my Clear router to the first hop. It is my opinion that Sprint is killing the service. What could have been a competitor for Verizon's ridiculously priced 4G network has now gotten inline and will not be offering an unlimited 4G service. Of course, no one would buy unlimited service if it didn't work, right?

*Note: All speeds were on a modem that indicated 4 to 5 bars of signal strength.

Written by Leonard Rogers on Tuesday, February 25, 2014 | Comments (0)

Time Warner Cable residential

Posted at 3:23:20 AM in Vendors (37)

I have been associated with various Time Warner products for over 8 years. I have had their business package and their residential packages and have represented several customers during the installation phase. Consequently, I also get emails and phone calls that aren't intended for me directly but for one of the customers I represented. The most frustrating experience with them has to be that only "some" customers get deals and others get screwed.

I received an email offering me the highest speed they offered business, but at the Tier 2 speed level prices. That was a phenomenal break considering they sell the high broadband Tier at 400 a month and the Tier 2 speed was at around 108 per month. The highest speed at that time was 15 over 2 Mbps. When I switched to FiOS, they asked if there was anything they could do to keep my business. I said, "Sure. give me 50 over 25 Mbps for 108 per month." Of course they couldn't. That was what I was getting from FiOS and for that price.

Time Warner is currently involved in a merger with Comcast. But this advertising model has gone on for ages. Just recently I got an ad in my bill that offered up to 100 Mbps for 10 extra a month. I called them and that isn't available in my area. How many times have I heard that. In today's technology, shouldn't Time Warner be able to target customers who CAN get that service? So, they offered me a bundle package. I couldn't get any upgrade on my speed unless I bought a bundle. That didn't make sense. I don't want cable TV and I don't want their phone service. I know that's what they do, but they offer internet so why can't I buy that and just that? 

I decided to disconnect from that conversation and went to my account online. I wanted to see what was offered online. There was a speed upgrade without a bundle. They offered Turbo for $44.95 per month which would have given me a substantial savings. This was offered on my account as an upgrade. Again, Time Warner meets the stone age technology wall. Time Warner tends to not offer upgrade deals at better prices to a customer they already have hooked. I knew this before I submitted the order, but hey, the offer was made, why not take advantage of it. Typically, if you want the better price, you have to cancel your account. And wait for them to send you offers to come back. Then you can get the better price. Just doesn't make sense, unless you have the customer over a barrel and they can't get internet from any other source. That's just business, right?

The system accepted my order. I got an email that asked me to call to confirm my order. When I contacted a live rep, they couldn't give me what I ordered. They couldn't find the promo to add to my account. When they went to check on it (and I told them this was going to happen) they told me that it's not available on my account. Amazing what technology can do for us today! They could, however; upgrade me to 20 over 2 Mbps, but at 10 extra a month. That's the same price they are offering me for "up-to 100 Mbps." That's such a rip off since I already know they can't give me the better speed for that price. They just don't have the equipment. So that means when it does come, I have to pay the 10 again to get the "up-to 100 Mbps." Just bad business.

I dropped the order. Time Warner just can't provide the business they advertise. This kind of fiasco rides right on the tail of the 2014 Super bowl freeze where they frustrated hundreds of thousands of customers, but where else are they going to get their service. Hopefully Comcast will bring a better business sense to the table. Certainly, with Time Warner being the one taken over, there is obvious problems in the organization.


Written by Leonard Rogers on Tuesday, February 25, 2014 | Comments (0)