Sunday, September 30, 2007

Optus makes me out of touch

I've been lying low for the past week as I have been travelling and trying to catch up with that thing I call 'work' which pays me an income.

To complicate things, with respect to my blogging, my Optus supplied home broadband service has been 'slowed' because I have exceeded my monthly allowance of 12GB. On checking I find I am paying considerably more for this than for other newer Optus deals which provide a larger 15GB allowance for less. I will have to deal with this.

I had originally switched from Telstra to Optus because Telstra didn't know that I could be given a cable connection - their automated service determining accessibility said no cable connection was possible. Yes, and of course Telstra provided expensive and terrible service.

The change to Optus was a switch from one expensive, lousy monopolist to another. When the 12GB limit is hit with the Optus plan the service is supposed to 'slow' to that of a dialup service. My distant memories of dialup however are that it was much faster than the slowed Optus service - today it took up to 5 minutes to download my home page.

In my view the option to pay more to get increased capacity is better than the 'slow' option.

It is frustrating. When you seek to make price comparisons across plans with Optus you are not provided with information about your own service relative to others. Indeed you are asked to upgrade without being told precisely what you will get. When you call their service personnel you are deliberately deceived - I assume the unfortunate call centre staff are told to pour smoke on situations of customer dissatisfaction.

The economic device Optus is relying on (as with the banks) is lock-in. It is very inconvenient to reconfigure an email address (or automatic bill paying facilities) so there is the propensity to plod on with a poor, expensive service.

If readers know of good broadband cable deals out there I'd be interested.


Tom Davies said...

Look at Whirlpool's 'Broadband Choice' to compare deals.

Only Optus and Telstra provide cable internet -- ADSL is better, but presumably you are not near an ADSL enabled exchange?

Thanks for the blog by the way -- it's always interesting.

Lord Sedgwick said...

Internode rocks ... and rolls ... even foxtrots and waltzes. (Not sure about their macarena performance though.)

Not related, not a shareholder, not huthin' other than a satisfied customer ... admittedly, a rarity these days.

Damien Eldridge said...

Personally, I prefer the slow down option to the pay-extra option. It is hard to predict how far over the limit I will go in any given month, or even if I will go over the limit. I do not like giving anyone a blank cheque. It would be better if they gave you the option of buyting an extra x units of service for a top up fee on those occassions that you request it.

hc said...

Thanks Tom and Lord Sedgwick. I spent a frustrating half hour with Optus today. The deal I have does not seem good compared to those on Whirlpool.

rabee said...

I hope this doesn't happen on election night.
It would be fun to follow live updates on kalimna; especially Bennelong.

hc said...

Rabee, Howard will retain Bennelong - the candidature of the attractive though witless Maxine is a diversionary tactic designed to waste Howard's time.

Jeremy said...

I'm on the same plan as you. You can monitor your usage at Don't forget the additional 24GB you get off peak (12am - 12pm) assuming you have a phone with Optus as well. I went over the limit once, but I check my usage regularly and have no problems any more. I schedule my downloads off peak and always have tonnes of bandwidth to spare even at the end of the month.