I really can't face the endless telephone tag, the effusive exuberance of the recorded young woman's voice they use on the phone lines, the VirginMedia website mining, the days of superhub channel changing experiments, the plugging the hub out and in, and all the other usual suspects that involve vast expenditure of customer time and energy largely to no useful end. I've kept it short this time.
Dear VirginMedia Executive Team,
Your broadband service has, yet again, been erratic, wireless connectivity exceptionally so. It has been deteriorating again for weeks. One laptop simply cannot connect wirelessly at all today.
Your “check service status” phone line “confirms” that Virgin Media believe/assert “there are no problems” in my area. Your “check service status” facility on the web - https://my.virginmedia.com/faults/service-status
says there is “Good service” in my area.
As is regularly the case, they are both wrong.
As before, I'm merely asking for an operational service and now I'm going to repeat myself:
When there is a problem with my broadband service – it’s slow and/or down and/or erratic and/or there are power fluctuations on the line – I want Virgin Media to know about it, let me know about it in an accessible communiqué, work hard to fix it asap and deliver a reliable service. I don't want to play telephone tag for hours, days or weeks or go on endless, fruitless Virgin Media website mining expeditions, in an effort to find a temporary DIY patch for the prevailing problem to tide me over until the next disruption.
Given that my bills are paid regularly regardless of the standard of service you provide, it really doesn't seem to much to ask that that service be robust and reliable.
Much though I appreciate the regular opportunity to navigate your Virgin Media broadband service telephone tag maze and engage your stressed call centre staff in friendly conversation, I'm rather busy with other personal and professional things in life at the moment.Your broadband service which I subscribe to at home has provided a variable wireless connection to my collection of digital devices for several days and has been deteriorating for several months. Though the connection to the computer directly wired to the Virgin Super Hub has been more or less ok, apart from the odd day or two or threes interruptions to service here and there, the wireless connection to other devices has been erratic and often slow with download speeds slipping below several tenths of a Mbps.As when I wrote to Richard Branson in October 2012, I'd just like to point out, again, that this is disrupting my family’s work, education, social activities and access to public and commercial services.
Your “check service status” phone line “confirms” that Virgin Media believe/assert “there are no problems” in my area.Your “check service status” facility on the web - https://my.virginmedia.com/faults/service-statussays there is “Good service” in my area.They are both wrong.As I believe I explained previously, to Mr Branson when he owned the company, when there are problems it is somewhat irritating if Virgin Media declare/think/pretend there are none.
Your labyrinthine, do-it-yourself (DIY) ‘check and fix your own problems’ approach on the Virgin Media website is quite something. It assumes customers have the capacity and the skill to hunt down and follow a series of Russian doll like instructions and articles about where you might find instructions which rarely fix anything. This does, however, generate significant angst. I'm at risk of repeating myself here but one of my least favourite activities, when I get home from work, is going through a series of convoluted, difficult to access (via your website or phone helplines) routine processes I know to be futile, in an effort to demonstrate to one of your difficult to access call centre folks that I’ve already tried the stuff on their crib sheet without success.
Your various “helplines” – out of which, these days, positively dance the effusively cheery young woman's recorded voice, seemingly nothing short of delighted to hear from me - are not very helpful. Incidentally the consultants – that advised your people or your people's people that customers, reduced to having to engage in endless telephone tag about a fault, would have their disquietude quelled by an extravagantly high spirited recorded voice – were wrong.
“Press 1 for…” queuing, canned music, notes that staff are busy (me too) and I'll have to stay on hold for x minutes, opportunities to choose the type of canned music I'd like to hear (my kids thought that was hilarious), more of the excessively upbeat recorded female voice and eventually, at the end of a long wait, connect to a member of call centre staff who can’t help. Apparently I'd been routed to cable services instead of national services. So cable services' Jay therefore had to transfer me to another part of your operation which in its turn can't help because I've been misdirected; so will transfer me to someone who they guarantee, absolutely, this time, will be the right person. None of this is conducive to soothing already fragile customer relations.
I spent about 40 minutes on the phone yesterday evening and after three false starts got through to a senior technician, Anjan, who seemed pretty stressed and worn out himself. I explained the wifi problem and Anjan declared Virgin could not guarantee a stable wifi connection. Not a promising start and something of a contrast to the response I got from a very helpful lady called Shambhavi when I had an equivalent wifi problem in August of 2013.*
In any case Anjan re-booted the super hub and changed the wireless channel. Neither activity helped. (They didn't the last time I tried them either.) So he said the best thing to do would be to send a technician round to physically relocate the super hub. Now given the super hub has not moved and we haven't acquired or run any extra digital technologies in the past week, I'm skeptical that the notion of physically moving the hub will make any appreciable difference to the erratic wifi connection. Nevertheless I accept that Anjan, as he said, was at the end of a telephone line and couldn't see the relative layout of where the wireless devices were in relation to the hub.
So I await your technician to work his/her magic next Tuesday between 1 and 6pm . The restoration of my wireless connections to something in the realm consistent usability and the banishment particularly of that irritating video buffering circle to the annals of history will be most welcome, if it can be achieved. I will, by the way, have to miss an important meeting to be at home to accommodate this visit.To any Virgin Media staff who trip across this open note - if you have, thanks for taking the time to read it thus far. To the Virgin Media call centre staff most of whom are doing your best in the face of problems outside your control - thank you for your efforts and your understanding, when you can muster it up, that I did not call to make your life miserable, merely to ask for an operational service.
To Mr Mockridge - as I said to Mr Branson, when there is a problem with my broadband service – it’s slow and/or down and/or erratic and/or there are power fluctuations on the line – I want Virgin Media to know about it, let me know about it in an accessible communiqué, work hard to fix it asap and deliver a reliable service. I don't want to play telephone tag for hours, days or weeks or go on endless, fruitless Virgin Media website mining expeditions, in an effort to find a temporary DIY patch for the prevailing problem to tide me over until the next disruption.
BT write regularly encouraging me to switch broadband provider. The series of disruptions in Virgin Media services in the past year alone is causing me to wonder whether that alternative would be more consistently reliable, with the additional bonus of access to BT Sport.Yours sincerely,Ray Corrigan