Rather than suffer through any more of the protracted, time-consuming, non-resolving telephone calls to Cox, I went into a local Cox Store and complained. They gave me a new and replacement cable modem without charge (pending return of my existing, failed modem) and scheduled a service call for today, now completed.
I installed the new, replacement modem myself after returning home from the Store Wednesday afternoon and my cable access speeds were immediately improved to the point of being more responsive than anticipated (so no complaints there).
The service call guy today tested the existing (new) modem in place and found it functioning very well (which it has been and is) and advised me that due to the area I am in at present, that regardless of how much Cox increases the service in this area, the use increases accordingly so the recurring “slow downs” in access speeds is due to too many in this service area using the service simultaneously and for extended periods of recurring time.
Like building more roads, I said to the cable guy, if you build more roads or more lanes on existing roads, all that does is produce more cars on more roads and he said, that was about the size of things in my current service area with the cable internet access, adding that they continue to “divide nodes” but when they do, the demand divides and multiplies accordingly — citing a few neighbors who were intense and frequent downloaders and responsible all by themselves for a great deal of the slowdowns in this one two-block radius.
However, the fall-off of access speeds I was experiencing earlier in the week and throughout the past month (if not many past months since it appears I’ve been living with the slow speeds in some foolish attempt to “live with it”) were beyond an issue of competition for bandwidth in my service area, but literally no speed at all, since resolved (at least at this time and I hope this continues) by replacing the modem.
However, this does not resolve the billing issues I’ve experienced over the years (see previous entries). At least now I am receiving the service I anticipate, for which I am paying. (03/2010 Update, see below — billing adjustment since extended by COX on my account, though it took me over two years in persistent complaints to get it, at least now done, with my appreciation.)
And that gives Cox — for now — a Happiness Test result of “85%”: they far and away succeed but with a few remaining technical and cost snafus (intermittent outages of the broadcast station line-up usually around 4:15 or 4:30 AM PST, and, the costs for Cox Cable — internet, phone and television — are prohibitive to many and a luxury to most, including me. (Updated 03/2010 — after a billing adjustment extended to me by COX about a year somewhere about late 2008, with an adjustment of the Happiness Rating by me to somewhere arond “95%).
I am still considering purchasing a SDSL from Covad, which would not provide me with the same access speeds I receive from Cox (when I receive them – update 03/2010 which is nearly consistently at great speeds now) but would provide consistency of speeds. Covad also offers several rotating “free equipment (DSL modem and router) and free installation” which makes their SDSL service more appealing.
Thus, that decision is pending; and while I can again use the internet via my Cox cable access — when it functions well, it’s superior — the ongoing issues otherwise (previous posts here) add-up to ongoing unresolved, significant issues.
It appears that the salesguy for Covad was entirely husseling me when I spoke with him on the phone back in 2007 — no Covad DSL service or otherwise is available in my area (it’s COX for broadband or an independent wireless service only for data, no television broadcast media at all from anyone other than COX).
A later followup call to Covad revealed that they not only did not offer service in my area, but never have, and that the guy who was so eager to get me signed up for their “service” in 2007 was just trying to make a sale for commission purposes (and had I purchased, I’d have been ripped-off).
03/2007, continued: So I continue with COX, they resolved their technical glitches, which were numerous back in 2007 and off and on for years before and after, but now since resolved and functioning extremely well since (since about the last two years, consistently well).
However, I do think I’d have yanked COX service altogether and just gone without had they not included a billing adjustment on my account, as I’ve previously and abundantly both complained about here in earlier posts and also about the resolution (after years of complaints, an eventual billing adjustment extended).
My only regrets as of 03/2010 are:
(1.) Can’t run my own server on COX’s network (new complaint but I’m not losing sleep over this, just would like to expand and try running my own server for a change); and,
(2.) Costs continue to be very high for COX broadband BUT their service has vastly improved in the last two years so what I am receiving for the costs involved do tend to be complimentary (still, it’s a huge expense every month, particularly the TV service).