When are ISP Providers going to be accountable for difference in services promised as opposed to services provided.
I live in a small town in country Victoria. Only in January this year did we manage to get away from Government sponsored wireless internet (1 mb/s) to ADLS 1.5 mb/s actual average speeds 300kb/s and 1.3 mb/s. I am about 900 metres from our exchange, almost the perfect location, not too close and not too far.
Now the real story, just over a month ago I was sitting home minding my own business when my phones just about tea time, yes you guessed it one of those pesky phone sales vendors that ring just as you are going to put your first scoop of food in your gob. A third party sales company calling on behalf of Telstra (Australia's biggest phone and internet provider)promising cheaper and faster telephone and internet speeds, being the skeptic I am and the greater hater of phone canvassing, I was about to hang up when this little devil character jumped onto my shoulder and said listen to this young lady, she might have something to offer, at this point my not sure why I didn't hang up whether it was that little devil, the seduction of the 20 mb/s or that sexy young voice of that lady on the other end of the line, I said I'm listening what do you have to offer. I offer was the combined phone and internet package, one of those introductory offers for new customers never offered as standard packages, in normal avenues. 20 mb/s wow evening in real terms 15/17 mb/s that's 10+ faster than I'm getting now.WOW WoW WoW........... Hang on a sec I can't get ADSL2 here in this little Gippsland backwash. Hey lady I said I crashed back to earth, "we can't get ADSL2 in this town" oh yes you can sir, Telstra has recently upgraded the services and you can get ADSL2 in your area, however let me confirm this by testing your line.... a moment silence before the young lady returns to the phone and says " I have just tested your service and ADSL2 is definitely available on your line. Well need I say sold lock stock and barrel as the saying goes. After adjusting a few minor services in the package off goes this young lass with the parting words "you should have your new service in the next 5 to 7 days." Crap I will, it all down hill from here, that's with no brakes of course. This young lassie forgot to mention a few key issues, Rapid Transfers, an instrument to get a user from one provider to another seamlessly, Ha Ha, a part of the contract that suggests a user must accept or agree to the terms and conditions of the contract once signs up and starts login process. One of these conditions is the speed available at any given time, so effectively if your contact suggests you can 20 mb/s, however your line can only provide 6 mb/s there is no recourse, stiff bickies and Telstra doesn't really know if they can provide ADSL2 until a technician actually attends the exchange.
To cut the story short the, 5 to 7 working days turned out to be 5 to 6 weeks, the order was lost twice, I went without an internet service for a week and you guessed it no ADSL2 service available in my town. To get a service going I had to agree to a service that provides me speeds on average of 3.5 mb/s at best 5.1 and at worst .25 mb/s at the original contract price! The most ironical facet to this story is when I was without my internet service for a few days I went grovelling back to my old provider, who told me it would take 7 to 14 days to get me reconnected as that is the time it would take Telstra to get their system operating again as they are reliant on Telstra for connections.
When are governments and consumer protection agencies going to prevent ISP providesr making great promises they can't or won't deliver.
Footnote: After a complaint to Communication Ombudsman, Telstra's Senior Complaints Department contacted me and offered me compensation for out of pocket expenses. Whoopy do this doesn't increase my internet speed.