The Original Issue (July 5th)

Dear Comcast,

I have been an X1 user since around March, if I recall. It may very well be April. Apparently, I got one before the full release to the local area. I found out about the box thanks to a commercial playing in my local market. After seeing it for weeks, I inquired about the box, and obtained one without issue. The issues came after getting the box, however.

Now, I work in the IT field, and understand that items in a limited release are going to have issues. None of this was made clear to me at the time I was getting my X1. I found out about this after many, many initial issues with the device and weeks beyond those issues, at that. My recent history with the equipment has been frustrating, but in the end it is a product I wanted to support.

I have been a customer of Comcast’s for most of my adult life, either through accounts I have controlled or a roommate’s account. I support the service, but recently there has been a lot of frustration because I feel like the service has not fully supported me. That is how I feel after the last few weeks of dealing with Comcast.

On June 28th, I was scheduled to move into a new home. I called about 6 weeks away from that date trying to schedule my transfer, but was told I had called too early. I was asked to call back at the start of June. I understand that certain scheduling systems have limitations, so I understood and complied. I made the call the first week of June and setup my transfer for June 28th. There would be a $30 tech on site fee, I was told. Everything was fine, or so I thought.

Shortly after I setup my transfer, I started to see commercials in my market for new X1 functionality, which included DVR Anywhere. This is a service I had seriously been wanting, and I was starting to check out the competition for similar services. Once I saw Comcast finally offered it, I wanted to learn more. I checked out the website, scouring for any information. In the course of one such night of info gathering, mere days before my move, I had logged into my account where I was told my next scheduled appointment was a move, on July 10th.

Needless to say I was very confused, concerned, and frustrated. I called up that night to 1800COMCAST (henceforth the main line) asking for help. I was told that nothing could be done until the next day, which was the day before the move. This was entirely due to Sales being responsible for service transfers. A fact I still find baffling in retrospect. In an IT world, I have yet to work for a company where sales is the sole department responsible for a move of technology and services. I expressed my concern to the supervisor to whom I was speaking with at the time. I requested any assistance, or at least a promise that someone from Sales would call me the following morning. He told me that he could only leave a note, and could not promise whether or not someone would call. This was because of the department being entirely independent from his own, and to that point I understood.

The next day, I was greeted with an email from an executive escalation support specialist. This person informed me they were able to get the date moved to the original day I requested, but it would be a much later window in the day. I was happy to at least have it be the same day, and confirmed that time. Between then and the arrival of the tech, I had called into the main line, inquiring as to whether or not I could ensure the tech could bring whatever equipment was needed for the X1 to be DVR Anywhere ready, and to ensure the bedroom would have the right device. I was told that it was not available at that time in Atlanta. Rather than risking losing my appointment again, I relented.

The next day, the tech came on site. I had mentioned that I was curious about the X1 DVR Anywhere functionality, and asked as to when it would be available in the area. He said that it was, and he had the correct equipment down in his vehicle. He asked if I would like to have it and I happily agreed. He produced the boxes, and setup all of the equipment needed. He thought the boxes were already updated and DVR Anywhere ready, but after turning on the boxes, discovered they were not. He instructed me to call into the main line and ask that the service be enabled on these boxes. He departed after that, but shortly after he left I discovered he packed up my living room remote and left with it. I called in, and was told that there was no way to promise he would return with it. They would ensure a remote would be delivered the following morning.

After waiting a few hours the following morning, I did not hear from anyone. I called into the main line, and asked if I could stop by any service location in the area to get a X1 remote. I was told that I could. Any of the locations in Atlanta would have the remote I needed. I was then asked if there was anything else I needed and mentioned that my DVR anywhere services had still not started on my secondary device. I was transferred twice more. While on hold with the third person, the line dropped my call. I opted to not call back in and left to obtain the remote.

I arrived to the location, waited in line, and was then told that was not a remote they keep in stock. However, they had a customer return a X1 shortly before and I could have it. I returned home, and discovered the services were still not active. By this point, I opted to wait for the next day. I called back in, asking for assistance. Due to my constant state of flux for the move, I was travelling at the time. The tech could not help me because I did not have the serial number on the box in question.

It would then be the next day before I had the chance to call back. During that time my DVR anywhere services were still not functioning. I called back, and got someone to tell me that there was an issue with the coding on the account for that box. That was changed and I was told to wait an hour for it to be active. I waited, and it was not active. I sent out a public Tweet the following morning expressing my frustration, and heard back from one of the Twitter Reps. I emailed over a quick rundown, and the correct info. They sent out an update to the boxes that would update that afternoon.

During the Twitter exchange, I had received my bill. I discovered that not only was there a $30 tech on site fee, but two separate install fees, $10 each for voice and video. I called in and expressed my frustration in this surprise charge. At no time was I ever told there would be more than the $30 charge I was first quoted. The service rep helped me, and I was told that $20 would come off of my current bill. The website would reflect this after 24-48 hours.

I got home after work, and still the DVR Anywhere was still not working.

By this point, I had resigned myself to this just not functioning correctly, and was going to reach out the following day, much like I am doing now. On July 4th, I received a call early in the day from someone in corporate. The person asked me if my issues had been resolved, and I was direct with them. They were not. I still did not have DVR Anywhere functionality on my secondary X1 box in the bedroom despite numerous attempts to help me with this.

When told this, the corporate employee told me that she had one in her home, and that the X1’s do not support this functionality. I questioned her answer because the tech seemed to think that it did, to the point he set me up with the boxes. She told me he was wrong and would have a word with his supervisor. I then asked about the commercials airing in my market here in Atlanta. She told me that they were not airing, essentially calling me a liar. She would check with marketing about it,

If I may, here is a link for the commercial in reference :http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z2rA6P4Nk1Q&list=PLD351AF0C54E8E7A5

Multiroom DVR, is that not the DVR Anywhere functionality?

But I digress, I asked the corporate employee as to when this functionality would be rolled out to the X1’s in Atlanta, and the employee could not answer. There was no set timeline. Essentially, according to the corporate employee, everything I had been told from every person trying to help me, was wrong. She then offered me $20 off of my next bill, and that was it.

An hour later, DVR Anywhere functionality started working on my secondary X1 dvr in my bedroom.

The other shoe has dropped. I just logged into check my bill. The $20 charge has not been removed, and in fact my bill went up by $2.99.

So, my final questions for you, in all of this, Comcast, are these.

Will there ever be a point where your departments actually share information? The extreme amount of misinformation I obtained in this experience is reason alone to change providers.

Will the service for which I have been asking for weeks be removed because some corporate employee said I couldn’t have it because she didn’t have it?

Is it common for corporate employees to question a customer like this?

When someone tells me that an amount would be reduced from a bill, is it common practice to not only have that charge not removed, but a different charge added? I cannot even determine what this new charge is, but I assume it is the DVR anywhere cost.

Seriously, Comcast, this has been the worst experience I have had as a consumer of your product for years. Arguably, this is the worst customer experience I have received on any product.

If this had been a restaurant, I would have asked to speak to the manager by now. That essentially I wanted something that was on the menu, but told by my server I couldn’t have it. I would then order something else, but then have what I wanted snuck to my table. And then when handed the bill expected to pay for things beyond what I ordered or asked.

My roommate has asked if we can upgrade his HDTV receiver to the X1 receiver, but I have been hesitant to call because of all of these issues. Should I even bother at this point? To say I am frustrated, and annoyed, is a gross understatement.

What I would like to see at this point is to have someone contact me, and ensure the bill is the correct amount. That I am in fact being charged for what I have, and that I can get this box upgraded.

If you have any questions about any of this information, do not hesitate to contact me. I understand that this is just my word as it pertains to the experience, but I would imagine somewhere you have communication logs that can verify everything I have provided you.

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