Internet America to ...who? Oh...Rise Broadband??
Oh, hold on to your pants. This is a long ride. In June of 2014, I received a postcard flyer from Rise Broadband letting me know they bought Internet America and I'd be getting upgrades, better service, better speeds, etc. I waited around a couple of months before I finally had to call to find out what the hold up was. I called Rise to talk to them more about this, as I was now their customer and they couldn't even FIND me in their system. That was problem number one. Turns out, I hadn't even been integrated into their system yet, and by this time, a few months had gone by.
Fast forward to October 2015. By this time, I've spent over 8 hours on hold in total time trying to get answers on WHEN upgrades would be made and why my speeds were no more than .53mbs up and .24mbs down at times. No one could ever give me a straight answer. I swear, I had 15 different answers to a single question, and none of them were right by the end of it all.
Eventually, I got downright fed up with it all. So, I wrote an email and sent it to CEO Jack Koo about this mess. My email hit seven different departments and my account went under review with the VIP of acquisitions. She called me personally to discuss my experience and was livid over how I'd been treated, considering she reviewed all of my phone calls into customer service and supervisors.
Originally, I was under contract for 2 years. I asked if my contract was still in effect and was told no by customer service reps. Then I was told actually, that is wrong (by a customer service supervisor)...I am still under contract. Then I asked about my data cap. They (customer service) said it was 250gig data cap but they couldn't monitor me, so it's really unlimited. Why can't they monitor me? Because they have no access to the towers here where I am, near Corsicana, Texas. They cannot even tell me the IP address to my equipment because they cannot access it. It belonged to Internet America. They BOUGHT Internet America. That's like buying a house and having no keys to the house given to you. Are you seriously going to be OK with that purchase agreement? How insane is that? ANYONE would think I am making this up, and even Rise Broadbands own executives wanted to think I was exaggerating on this all, until they went and looked for themselves and saw I was right.
Eventually, things lined back out for a while. As an apology for my unacceptable service, I was placed on a 10MB package, given a $100 Visa giftcard (yes, this is what happens when you take a big issue right to the top teir, and I was VERY thankful for the response) with a month to month agreement (no contract), and things were good for a while.
Just for the record, not ALL of the employees within Rise Broadband are awful. Kim is a really great person to work with, but unfortunately, she stopped responding when I emailed her an update on an interesting conversation I had with one of their service technicians who came out to my home to "look" at my equipment. He literally looked at it, and had little else to do, because it was so limited in access. I imagine that Kim likely was just fed up with it all and knew that this was going to be a never ending circle of her going to her team to ask about upgrades, and they'd give her the same BS answers that she'd have to return back to me. In a way, I don't blame her. I'd be exhausted too.
Technically my equipment is not "broken" when the signal goes down to nothing. So, because of this, concerning upgraded equipment (like advertised to me back in July 2014), I am SOL. So I'll never get an upgrade, despite the countless number of times upgrades have been discussed as being "in the works" over the past couple of years; or at least that is what I have concluded in all of this. In fact, this area hasn't seen any upgrades in about 20 years now; so says the rumor. My equipment is at least a decade old - FACT. How it's even getting a signal is beyond me. It was here, attached to the house when I moved in. My landlord had is installed when she lived here which has been almost a decade now.
Fast forward to today (October 2016).... I see an increase on my bill, like everyone else...it is for equipment rental fees. Granted, it says a $10 increase, but it worked out to around $1.74 on my actualy bill increase. It's not so much the amount as it is the reason behind the hike. Increase on rental fees. Seriously? Are you laughing yet? You should be. I mean, you should be crying from laughing so hard after reading the information I gave above. How are they going to validate RAISING fees on equipment they cannot even fix or access?
At this point, I remain a customer because 1) I am grandfathered into an unlimited month to month account, and 2) I'm seriously waiting to see JUST how long it does actually take them to make an upgrade.
Just, be warned. If you get an account with Rise Broadband, there are good people working in there, and then there are people like Supervisor Andrea working the call center who will hang up on you (even though you're being really polite and just explaining the situation), or the Technical Support guy who told me I was an awful parent for homeschooling my kids and depending on the internet to allow them to connect to their online classes, and not having a backup. (Yep....he really said that, and yep...Rise Broadband Executives that listened to the recorded calls actually got to hear him say that). As a customer, I shouldn't have to justify my personal needs for the internet. I should just be receiving reliable service in exchange for my very RELIABLE payment each month. I've yet to miss a payment or be late. So what's their excuse?
Personally? If I could change to another service with unlimited data and decent prices? I would; but there's no such service out here.
And before you call me a liar....I've included screenshots of some of the email conversations with Rise Broadband. :)
More Review Details
|Discounts and Special Offers|
|Diversity of Products or Services|
|Value for money|
|Advertised vs Delivered|
|Exchange, Refund and Cancellation Policy|
|Style and Design|
|Product or Service Quality|
What I liked
- Way it was before the buy out
- Service tech was friendly
- Some customer service is nice
- Resolutions offered in the beginning
What I disliked
- Everything that is not the same before i went with rise
- Rude supervisors in customer service
- False advertisement
- Cannot access my equipment to fix it properly
- Zero upgrades followed through
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