I don't really want to get involved with the moving of my broadband and phone service, but this situation with my current supplier of both, the Post Office, is beyond a joke.
Today marks three whole weeks since I had fully working e mail. After 2 weeks, I wrote a letter of complaint and told them that if I did not get an explanation as to what they intend doing about it or a date by which it would be working again, I would be terminating the agreement.
I've not even had an acknowledgement of that letter.
I've had a good mooch about online as to what deals are available and it would appear the market is bullish right now. I know enough about comms to do a comparison rather than just skim the surface and see what appears to be a great deal (as all the comparison sites seem to do).
For example, three months at a low monthly price is not much good if it more than doubles after that.
Neither is a low monthly payment, if that is offset by a high setup fee (I've seen up to £ 99.00).
Same with the call prices on the telephony side. I missed that when I signed up to the Post office. At the time it was 4p a minute during the day, but in very small print elsewhere in the agreement, there is a connection fee for every call which is now about 8p, making a short daytime call (in multiple) turn pennies into pounds come billing time.
The market is definitely lacking competition from smaller more hungry players. Currently, it's top heavy with:
BT - Expensive and a company who adds hidden charges to their quarterly bills. Virgin and Sky, both too busy trying to flog their TIVO type boxes to offer a serious phone and broadband variant.
Talk Talk - I only visited their website. It gets you to put your phone number in to check you can get their service. What you do get next day, is a pushy little twat with his hard sell, trying to pull you over to their dark side.
AOL - Wouldn't touch them with a barge pole. Tiscali (hidden charges and set up fees) Plus Net - Looks good on the surface but again, delve deeper and all that glisters...
Vodafone offer what looks like a cost effective package, but in the small print, if you cancel your mobile contract with them, they slap on a £ 10 a month surcharge. I've had a mobile on contract with them for about 10 years now and am unlikely to change, but I really don't like being restricted in that way.
Over the last three years or so, it would appear the big players have seen off the smaller ISP's and now the market is in the grasp of the varmints listed above.
Right now, I find myself stuck between a rock and a hard place. The Post Office has to get the heave ho, but where I'm going to "park my domain" is a question I can't quite rightly answer at the moment. Ooh er !