Disappointment with Internet

In our rural Vermont setting it’s been a real trial to find internet at home. It’s not all bad. In fact, I’ve discovered that life goes on without internet at my finger tips. Nevertheless, as someone who keeps in touch with family primarily through the computer and who enjoys blogging and writing, it’s a bit of a drag to pack up the lap top for a half hour drive every time I want internet.

Our first solution to our internet conundrum was Wild Blue Satellite Internet. Without DSL or cable in our area, it was our only choice. Wild Blue wasn’t ridiculously expensive, just regular expensive. We shelled out $200 for the stuff, another $200 for installation and the router, and then braced ourselves for $50 a month just to move at half the speed of DSL. The up side was the constant connection and free phone line when compared with dial up.

In early May the dish was installed and we hummed along for over a week without a hitch. Enter thunder storm. Game over. That led to over a month of waiting for service since Wild Blue parcels out their service and installation among other companies. If they’re using a company right around the corner with a lot of availability, then you’re set. If it’s not, you’ll be waiting for the repair company to call–like we were.

The waiting ended on Monday with a quick repair of some electrical element that was fried in the storm. We were back online in a few minutes and enjoyed our internet until–you guessed it–another thunderstorm rolled into town yesterday.

Game over again.

So now, while I need to get rid of Wild Blue due to its inability to cope with natural elements, I needed to find an alternative. I decided to beg Comcast and Verizon for help. 

Selecting Comcast, since I’ve seen their trucks right down the road, I plowed through technician after technician, only to find out that the only reason why they turned us down in the first place was because our home wasn’t listed in their database or something like that.

After working their magic on the database they scheduled us for high speed installation. It was worthy of a “Napoleon Dynamite” fist pump: “Yes!”

At the end of the day, I’ll give Wild Blue a C+ and may even raise that to a B- if they can handle my cancellation gracefully. The people are really nice, they try to provide quick service, and the satellite internet is good when it works. 

The down side is they parcel out their service to so many different companies, it’s hard to control quality and the timing of service. No one wants to call about poor service and just hear about the failure of another company. In addition, satellites dishes are quirky and run into all kinds of problems out in the elements, as we’ve found out.