Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Cost of Speed

It was a great day yesterday celebrating Dad's 88th birthday.  The weather in Kansas couldn't be more delightful - sunny yet cool with a breeze while sitting on the balcony screen.  Each trip back I get to practice my technology skills tuning Dad's computer and network.  This visit - internet access speeds.

I spent time on the phone with ATT to discuss Dad's charge for internet access ($33/mth for up to 1.5mbps) yet I clocked his speed at 0.29mbps (I was reminded the contract states "up to" 1.5mbps).  The technical representative was less than helpful taking nearly three minutes to even find out what plan Dad was subscribed to.  Next was a discussion with the cancellation department (since I felt $33/mth was ridiculous in addition to the rep's smart alec "up to" comment). 

ATT has a new product U-Verse which it fiber to the home and was naturally trying to push that product line.  The complexity of this decision is too much for an 88 year old (and even me at 58 year old).   So I asked what "deal" they would offer on increasing the DSL line to avoid our switching to Cox Communications (Cable). 

The answer was again complicated - the representative suggested their 6mbps speed ($46/mth) with two options - a 6mo promotion of 50% off; or a 12 month promotion of $10/mth off.   I countered asking what promotions they had for their 3mbps plan.  The rep offered the same terms.  I'm still baffled by why they offer the two different discount plans (regardless my higher math caused me to jump at the 50% off plan ---  figure it out!).

So again the lesson learned is -----  annually rebalance your communications subscription portfolio.  First threaten cancellation - then accept the promotional discount.

P.S.  Seems the latest cost of speed is about $5/mth for each 1.5mbps download speed. 

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