SPRINGFIELD, OHIO -- I recorded three different agents at Spectrum admit to "pushing" ARRIS software into my modem. Then they pushed the blame on ARRIS. ARRIS vehemently deny it and furthermore state that I don't even own an ARRIS modem!
My modem was developed by Motorola and was pre-ARRIS buyout of the Motorola line of the particular model modem. Finally, without having received any service whatsoever (and only receiving damaged hardware), they arrogantly send 5 bills with dissimilar amounts and now threaten to turn the issue over to collections despite the fact that I submitted a complaint within a day or two of their antics at hacking, tampering, then bricking my modem (ADMITTEDLY!). We have no checks and balances against monopoly control... FCC was reflexive in the Spectrum decision to drop the issue. That's all it took to make it disappear.
NORTHERN, MICHIGAN -- I've spent the last 8 years fighting with this company nearly monthly over missing channels, my bill, internet speed- you name it. My saga: March 2007, signed up for triple play at promo rate. July 2007, bill doubled. Called and got it fixed. August 2007, moved and Charter tried to charge us for moving. Got it fixed. October 2007, bill went up. Charter refused to honor price. Canceled service. Switched to a dish service. May 2008, dish service was worse. Relented and signed with Charter. July 2008, bill went up. Called and got fixed. November 2008, channels disappeared and bill had false charges. Called and got fixed.
May 2009, promo over called for a better deal. Got one. Life is good until February 2011, bill goes up, phone stops working, internet starts lagging. Call, no help. Call for 3 weeks straight every day. Bill is fixed. Finally, get a tech to come. Find that wiring is bad. Fix it. All is well. March 2012, cancel cable and phone, keep internet. February 2013, husband NEEDS cable. Add it back. April 2013 bill goes up. Call to fix. June 2014, add phone for triple play. Get amazing deal. July 2014 - May 2015, call every month about bill. I have the promo in writing.
They try to not honor it. Tell me that the deal shouldn't have been given. I send screenshots. They relent. Also I call weekly as our internet keeps lagging. Speed tests show it's at dial up speed. They say it's not. I send screen shots. They say it's peak time (Apparently every time from 1pm to 3am is peak time- who knew?!). May 2015, tech comes to check internet. Turns out "someone" put a restriction at the pole to our house. Shocking! I call to demand refund for the last year as I've been telling them this the whole time. Denied. Get bill, it's tripled. Call. Told too bad. I send screenshots from June 2014. Still told too bad. Cancel phone.
End of June 2015, call to cancel cable. Am stuck on phone for 10 minutes alternating between being berated for canceling and offered promo. Hang up. Call back. Offers more promo, I refuse. Tell CSR to just cancel all but internet. CSR yells at me and hangs up. I call back. I'm told I can't cancel, it's in my husbands name. No, the bill says otherwise. He calls. They pull same with him. He finally snaps and they cancel cable and phone.
July 2015, get bill. It's still same rate for triple play. Call. I'm told they will credit future bills after I pay this month. No, thank you. It will take 3.5 months to cover the bill if they credit the whole future bill (which we know they won't). I'm told too bad. Husband calls. They edit bill. It's still $40 too much. He told it's for prorating our bill for the time we had the triple play. Wait, what? We pay a month ahead. Husband tells them this. "Oh, ok. We will fix it."
I pay for just the internet and taxes. Today, get a phone call saying service will be disrupted if we don't pay our past due balance. Look online. That $42.12 is still showing. Call. Am given the run around and hung up on. Call again. Am told it's fixed. We will see.
TURLOCK, CALIFORNIA -- I am a 20+ year plus Charter Turlock Subscriber. Since September of 2015, the cable service (both HD and SD), the high speed internet service and phone service have become so degraded as to be non-functional. I am reasonable and went through the process for service calls/resolution. However 16 service calls between September 2015 and the present press the issue. I am paying 200+ dollars per month for this.
Charter Turlock replaced all cable boxes (did not resolve problems). Charter Turlock replaced both of my Television sets at their request (did not resolve problems). Charter Turlock replaced all cabling, both internal and external (did not resolve problems).
Charter Turlock re-grounded my outside equipment to meet state GO Codes 128 & 95 (did not resolve problems).
Charter Turlock replaced my cable modem -1.1 Mb upload speeds, 3-5x less than promised (did not resolve problems). Charter Turlock drilled a hole in my home and ran a coax cable straight to the cable box to see if they could get cable service on at least one TV functional (did not resolve problems). Charter Service was informed that the phone service dial tone failure was urgent as it hooks to live-sustaining medical equipment in the home, and the frequent failure had led to hospitalizations. Charter responded that it was not an issue they had control over.
Charter Turlock has had dozens of trucks all over the neighborhood replacing repeaters and amplifiers (did not resolve problems). Charter Turlock was visited by me politely and was informed that the General Manager of the Turlock Branch does not meet with consumers. I have met with all other supervisors and the Service Manager (all were polite and professional).
Functioning and reliable internet and cable services are an amenity to The City of Turlock, and for that reason I have asked to be on the City Council Agenda and requested a meeting with the City Manager. The City allows them access to the easement and are interested in the inability of Charter to provide promised services. I have filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and Department of Consumer affairs.
If I am unable to rectify these service/billing issues, I will file a case with the Small Claims Court. BOTTOM LINE - All I want is it to work, a meeting with the Turlock Branch General Manager to discuss the 6 months of paid invoices for non-functional service.
ST CHARLES, MISSOURI -- After having Charter service (internet, phone, and TV) for 1 month, I started getting a pop up on my internet that I needed to read and agree to Charter terms and conditions. To avoid viruses, I don't open pop-ups. After having their service for a month, I didn't feel that this would be legitimate, so I contacted their customer service. She told me it was legit and I needed to open and accept it. I explained to her that to avoid the aggravation and expense of viruses, I don't open pop-ups, that they could email or mail their terms and conditions to me and I would be happy to sign. She told me I could also access it on my account through their website.
It was sent to me by email, with nowhere to accept so I went to my account and had nowhere to accept. I called back and was switched to tech support. She wanted to remotely access my computer to verify that it was their pop up by opening it. I asked her if they would cover the expense of removing a virus if it wasn't theirs and she said no. I really don't need to let her experiment on my computer at my expense.
If I was told when their service was installed to expect this and it was done in a timely manner, I would not question this. After a month, I have to say, this is very poor business practice. Sad to say, there are mean people in this world that look for ways to spread viruses and apparently this is common knowledge that Charter does this. They are leaving an open door for someone to latch on to this and I will not be the recipient. They tell me there is no other way for me to accept their terms and conditions. What kind of business is this?
WHITEFISH, MONTANTA -- I am in Northwestern Montana and have had to deal with this utterly pathetic company for the last several years. I have never experienced such absolutely horrible customer service with extremely high-pressure sales tactics and very sketchy approaches with their billing system such as hidden fees, double charging for services, forcing customers to rent their equipment. Not to mention that it now costs $5 to talk to an actual human to deal with issues that are out of the customers control. My internet connection is worse than CenturyLink's 1.5Mbps ancient DSL service both in ping times and connection speeds.
In fact the connection drops a minimum of 8 times per day with an average downtime of 5-8 minutes per drop. 60Mbps!!!??? I am a network engineer and have run regular tests throughout the last several years and I can say for a fact that we don't even get close to 60. On a good day at 4:00AM I might see 12Mbps for 10 seconds to a speed test server outside of their network plus my house is less than 100 yards from their fiber junction box.
Any educated person in this industry very well knows that using a hybrid fiber/copper coax distributive loop system with a 70:1 line sharing ratio pretty much guarantees massive interference from overhead power lines, weather, and general electrical line loss pretty much guarantees the network will fail on a consistent basis.
Apparently Charter hasn't figured out (and/or is ignoring technology advances) what smaller and far more reliable wireless, and fiber communication companies have figured out quite a while ago which is copper networks are old news and anti-interference with unlimited bandwidth capable fiber optics is the only current viable option for the future of the internet. I can't stress how much I despise this company and their god awful tactics!!!
MEDFORD, OREGON -- In Oct. of 2014 I received a bill for $160 dollars. When I called they stated the price had change and the only way I received the new deal was threatened to cancel the service. Today April of 2015 after many calls and hours of reviewing with customer service I was told that I still owed money back from October. Since then I have spoken to several supervisors that guaranteed that any back charges were fixed and I received the deal.
Each time I called they would not talk until I paid the amount up front and when I paid they said it would be discounted from my bill. The only person that had any kind of consoling words was the exit agent that could see the amount of times I called for the same reason.
There were claims of the original calls being dropped up to not seeing in the system anytime I called so there was no evidence of the transactions taking place. Anytime during the process I asked for documentation and they would not provide. I am sure the reason they did not provide emails or anything was they wanted to keep using the tactic of excuses and keep going as long as you will call back.
If you read this and it sounds similar to what you are going through cut your losses by canceling your account. I hope many people read this before they decide to take the offer to not cancel. It would have saved me many hours of time and money if I did.
MISSOULA, MONTANTA -- For the most part - these folks don't care if you're unhappy. Their internet is slow too often, and I've had nothing but problems with them (since becoming Charter - even though they state nothing has changed but the name - it changed for me).
The installer put cords through a main walk area, which my son tripped over twice (we have photos but what's the point - they don't care). We are keeping them here until our new ISP installs so we can have a witness - and will be getting statements from as many people as we can over the next few days - dust around them and all so can prove how screwed up this cord thing has been and continues to be. I tripped over it once and pulled the cord right out of the back of my TV (and the whole cable connection so TV is broken). I luckily only fell down and nothing landed on me - just a broken TV.
The cord was suspended through the air by about ½" (pulled taut by the installer). My son ruined another TV when helping me move some furniture (at least he didn't trip this time). I have these two broken TV's in the exact condition they were when we accidentally tripped over the cable cord. If someone were to see where this thing was, they would be amazed (literally in the middle of the room suspended through the air enough that if not careful, this could happen). I'm surprised we didn't trip over it more often.
We never got this resolved - eventually had to get an extension wire (which they threw at us and made us do, we couldn't due to the enormity of the splits so had to wait for them to come back). They basically extended it but only enough so the cord would now touch the ground (is still running in the middle of the living room walkway).
They also ruined my computer by putting their software into it twice (yes twice). Once in a while I get this box that says, "cannot install or upgrade software due to affinity" or something to that extent - which is digiDo. Their response - "we don't know why it does this to MacBooks and there is nothing we can do." So why then would they install it twice? Because they didn't believe me when I told them it had been installed before and were too incompetent to search for proof it had been before recklessly reinstalling it. My computer cost 1500.00 and has not worked the same since.
To reward me for 101/2 months of hell - they raise my monthly service by $38.00 per month. Because they never once cared to take care of any of the problems I had due to their negligence, and at my expense I have needed to report to the BBB & Consumer Affairs. I'll likely end up in court. I honestly had let it all go - still have these issues but was trying to be kind and not be a pain to them.
Having raised my prices without warning (and taking it out of my account) was the breaking point. I have 2-broken televisions, which need cable connections installed back into (not a difficult process but I won't stop until they take care of this expense), a computer that needs to be sent to a technician (at one point they told me to bring it in to get the software off - at "my" expense when they couldn't do it), and unauthorized amounts coming out of my account.
They have cost me a great deal of time, stress, and money (and just don't care). I strongly recommend any company other than this for your internet and cable services. Their internet may be advertised as fast and it is "when it works". More often than not I have freezes and delays - major slowdowns and needs to reboot (on any device), and have to turn to my cell phone's internet service for a working connection. Their triple play package - good if you will only want their service on a temp basis. After that you will work your way from the 99.99 to 189.00 - the longer you stay the more you pay.
I had been talked into this even though I had been a consumer for about 7 years prior to that. The idea was "you will pay a little less and get a phone out of the deal". I took the offer but was never told that I would pay in a big way down the road. I've asked them to pull the recording from that call (I had called about us tripping over the wire a second time and a second TV being broken), when they sold me this package.
I thought existing customers didn't get this deal but evidently because I was paying a decent price, they figured they needed to hook me for something (I have no idea why they did this). A sad ending to a company I would have preferred to stay with for life simply to have some continuity - was even willing to bypass the difficulties to stay with them but they pushed things too far.
FORTSON, GEORGIA -- Charter enticed me to come back by offering reduced rates on bundled services and promising to buy out my current contract with another provider. After not be able to use their website to file for the buyout, I called and received a physical address to submit the documents required to qualify for the Buyout. After several months, I called Charter and informed them that I had sent the buyout information by certificate of mailing two months earlier and gave them the number. Three days later I received an anonymous e-mail from the Charter Buyout Team informing me that I had not submitted the info within the required 60 days.
I called Charter again and informed them again that I had a certificate of mailing and copies of the documents I had mailed. The representative was very apologetic but said he could do nothing. It was not until I filed a complaint with the State Public Service Commission that Charter requested the docs and cert. of mailing. Even then it took another two weeks for verification that the $200 was credited to my account. And I still will have to wait another month for the credit to work off my account.
During the course of this process I spoke with over fifteen representatives from over the entire country. Each time I had to wait on the phone and with each representative, I had to start over from square one. The process took over four months and I have also filed two FCC complaints because Charter has not complied with Federal and State laws mandating that Charter provide contact information of the local franchise authority.
They have acted in bad faith and although I will finally get what they promised, it has cost me hundreds of hours in legal research, telephone calls to Charter, the FCC, the Public Service Commission, the Governor's Office of Consumer Protection, my state senator's office, etc. I also attempted to resolve the issue by driving 20 miles to the local Charter office, which by the way, does not have a telephone number which you can call. You must call the GETCHARTER national number. The process is designed to discourage the consumer from seeking a remedy.
My local state rules and regulations do not provide penalties or fines that I can find although the state law provides that the Governor's office of Consumer Protection "may" provide for fines and penalties. Charter lobbyist are strong in my state and work closely with some of the elected officials. The FCC requires that the provider, Charter, identify the Local Franchise Authority but Charter did not provide all the information on the bill and will not provide it in spite of numerous e-mails and phone calls. Charter also misrepresented the facts during the PSC complaint, which is processed online.
My experience is that Charter abuses the consumer with impunity in spite of state and federal laws. I costs the consumer too much time and effort to force Charter to abide by the terms of the contract. Since there are no fines and penalties available with the informal consumer complaint processes, Charter and other providers little incentive to follow the laws. The only thing they are concerned about is the number of complaints that are documented and most people are so demoralized after the long waits on the phone and the inability to speak to the same person, that they do not document their complaints.
When a cable provider wants to expand their territory, the authority who issues the franchise will check the number of complaints lodged at the PSC, BBB, etc and then and this information is considered when determining if a franchise license is issued in a new area. So if you want to protect others from these predators, document these complaints and file them with the PSC, FCC, etc... One can also file complaints with many of the local franchise authorities but this option is hidden from you by the providers.
They have to make the Local Franchise Authority point of contact known to you but they do not let you know you have the ability to file complaints with most of them, especially when there is no competition in your area. Read Susan Crawford's book, "Captive Audience" which exposes the fact that US rates are higher and service is inferior to countries such as Sweden, Korea, Japan and even China. So the consumer pays more money for an inferior product and along the way suffers from Customer Service that does not meet the standards set by the FCC. Look up section 76.309, Customer Service, contained in 47 CFR 76. 309.
Tired of being placed on hold for up to ten minutes? Pay special attention to subsection (C) of 76.309, where it specifies that telephone answer time by a customer rep., including wait time, SHALL not exceed 30 seconds. Go the FCC website and file a complaint. You can talk with an FCC representative who will assist you or even file it for you. Until we all take the time to document the abuse and file complaints, cable and internet providers will continue with this massive theft and hire more lobbyist which will ensure that service will continue to suffer.
ASHEVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA -- We've had the lowest rated cable service in Asheville, NC since 2010. This is according to 2009 Consumer Reports. We were warned about the problems with Charter by a few people and we walked into it eyes wide open. It has been the worst everything to the point that I dreaded the renewal timeframe. Charter Comm. sent a letter to its customers dated 9/14/13 in which it states our promotion is about to expire and we will get a Customer Appreciation Discount of $59 for an additional 12 months. Then the nightmare (the worst of them) began. They are all pushing a new package.
A representative on chat (my second attempt to find out what was going on) called me something close enough to stupid for not wanting to take advantage of the new deal. I told the representative Charter is herding people to upgrade and eventually the costs will skyrocket. I reported his actual words to the rep.'s supervisor who pushed the new package, not the comment by the employee. I attempted to bring the focus back on the employee. I don't know if I was successful. I do know it was a lost cause. I was pushed off to a higher tier representative. I hung up on him. He called back and I finally picked up the 2nd callback.
I explained I knew what Charter was doing and he was my fourth contact of the day pushing a package. I would not apologize. After more agonizing contact, he said we'd get the upgrade (to me of things we don't want or need) for $133 (includes tax) and our modem/router combo had to be upgraded to handle the higher speed. I informed him the technicians are yet another nightmare. I also asked for the package information with the price quoted be sent to me as, based on all other experiences, people at Charter lie or management does not provide them enough information to do an honest job. He said he could not do that.
I replied that I was purchasing something at a verbal rate not in writing and I was concerned I'd be burned (ripped off was more accurate). The bill was updated online. The Balance for the dropped rate (I was paying $138) was about $9. I called and the uninformed or stupid representative said it was a credit. It did not look like a credit but a charge. The next day or so I looked again, now the Balance was $89. I CALLED AGAIN.
Customer support could not help, so I was bounced to billing. After about 55 mins. on the phone with the lovely woman from Wisconsin, she said: We didn't need to replace the modem/router everyone else said had to be replaced. It would handle the new speed. I worked in the computer field and with our internet usage we DON'T NEED MORE SPEED. She spent time confirming that. I truly appreciated that. She took time to ensure she was telling me truth. We didn't have to replace our current DVR/cable box that everyone else said had to be replaced.
Sometime in October, if we want service on our HD TVs upstairs, we will need boxes for $12/month. I'm considering not watching TV... I could also go to the local shop and pick up the boxes myself. That remains to be seen if it's possible.
I liked the woman in Wisconsin and I apologized to her when I said I'll believe it when I see it. She actually understood and apologized profusely. Apologies for repeatedly horrific service from Charter is worthless but I understood why she had to say it. I sent a letter to Verizon FiOS imploring them to come here. I watched their stumbling and growth in NY. They would be the competition for Charter.
WHITTIER, CALIFORNIA -- For all those considering dealing with Charter stay away from Charter as you may regret it as my experience below shows. This is the last bad experience of a series of bad experiences I had with this company in the last several months including at their office or by phone. It is amazing to see the number of similar complaints online and with the Better Business Bureau about how this company conducts its business.
We had today Saturday Sept. 7, 2013 a scheduled 3-5 PM move of service from one location to another which is literally next door. The reason is that I am disabled and to avoid the stairs in the old location a residence section was blocked off in the new location which has no stairs.
Charter technician failed to show up in spite of two assurances made by Charter on the same day when I called personally to check the status and whereabouts of the installer. Misinformation is what Charter specialize in. For example one of the untrue piece of information given as an excuse is that the installer could not find the new location while two assistants of mine were sent out to wait in the street under scorching heat from 2:10 PM (since your installers sometimes come earlier) to 5:30 PM well beyond the appointment time.
One assistant was stationed at the corner so he can see Charter truck whether it comes from the front door or the back door and the other stood less than 100 feet away at the entrance of old location. Charter never showed up. In spite of 6 calls to Charter, each entailing a 20 minutes wait to go through the menu until you get a live person and in spite of several assurances where every time a different and conflicting story is given to the customer, we did not learn until after 5:30 that Charter unilaterally rescheduled the appointment for next Saturday a week later.
At that time I called the assistants back from the street and called Charter several more times to discuss a date to get rid of Charter unless they honor their word and install today. One employee attempted to help, called back to inform me that she is talking to a dispatcher and hopes to get the transfer to be done today in an attempt not to lose an 18-year customer. But then very long time passed but she never called back.
Charter also disconnected me from the existing location without connecting the new location using different misinformation as an excuse. I was with no service, no email, no internet and the only thing Charter offered was a 'sorry' and more conflicting information and different story every call. This untrustworthy company reneged on their promise at a great cost to me not only by robbing me of a full day of my life but also adding insult to injury by having me wait from 5:30 PM to 10 PM when they re-gave me the impression that they will honor their promise that night and then not having the courtesy to call back and tell me they will not do it.
"Terrible" does not even begin to describe the installer who because of him Charter lost an 18-year-old customer and robbed him from a wasted day of his life plus that of two assistants and unknown number of hours of suffering to obtain alternate service and handle the mess of 18-year-old email accounts. Not finding a prominent corner well-known business address is only a lame excuse for a more serious problems with Charter staff.
The least I can do is to make it my mission in life to inform all our friends, neighbors, every social site and on every occasion the facts of my experience with their misinformation and inefficiency. It will be a pleasure to drop Charter from my dictionary. It will be a big breath of fresh air to get rid of Charter management who hires such terrible installers and employees.