Friday, September 18, 2009

Virgin Media broadband customer review

The Virgin Media broadband fiasco continues. Late yesterday the household was blessed with connectivity and I managed to post up the blog entry I’d written earlier. The problem, it seemed, was solved. However, at 8.30 this morning I turned on the modem and found no service yet again.

I am now a master of the Virgin Media helpline system. Not through any natural ability. Rather, through repetition. I phoned up, keyed in the numbers before the voice could ask me for them and was put through to a charming Indian man who asked me to turn things off and turn them on again, report on which lights flashed and which lights didn’t, tell him which operating system I was using and eventually informed me that there was a problem in my area but engineers were working on it and the service would be back by 6pm.

‘How many more days will the service be out?’ I asked.

‘It will be back by 6pm today.’

‘That’s what I was told yesterday.’


‘And the day before. And the day before that.’


‘So when will this problem be over?’

‘At 6pm today.’

Whatever they are paying their helpline staff it isn’t enough. The guy must be
facing a screen which tells him to tell me this stuff. It is ludicrous, frankly. He knows it. I know it. But he delivers the lines faultlessly. He is polite, concerned and does not deviate a hair’s breadth from the script. I’ve spoken to seven or eight of these helpline workers in the last week. They have all been charming.
It seems that Virgin media have wisely invested in their complaints department. Shame about the broadband service.

If you are a Leicester customer of Virgin Media and are having problems could I suggest you phone the helpline on 151. Key in the numbers 2 followed by 3 and wait while it tells you to turn everything off and then on again. They’ll play you a bit of music, then someone will speak to you. Ask for a refund and they should credit you £5. Today I asked for a substantial refund and was told I would be credited £10. Tomorrow I intend to ask for an enormous refund.

But then again, if you are a Leicester Virgin Media broadband customer you probably won’t be able to read this.


Rod Duncan said...

This article was posted during a window of broadband connectivity in the early afternoon.

Mosher said...

As with any broadband company it does seem to vary area to area. My dad's on Virgin and they're great. Never cuts out, I can download to my heart's content without speed throttling, iPlayer's like watching telly... awesome.

However, at my ex's only 30 mins away, she was being throttled down to dialup speed if she didn't stick tightly within the (at that time) completely unadvertised and certainly not agreed to download limits.

It took her several phone calls to complain about the bad service (charged at national rates, naturally) before she found out there *were* download limits. She then had to pay for these phone calls and wait for the next bill to have the amount re-credited.

Charging for "support" I get. It's a service. But charging for reporting problems? Nuts.

Rod Duncan said...

Not exactly a transparent marketplace.

No problems today (Saturday). I have a sinking feeling they will be upgrading again on monday however and that the service will be cut. We will see.