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Wildblue warning!

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Ex Member

Aug 5th, 2008 at 3:27pm  
A warning to Wildblue customers!

I have had Wildblue satellite service for a year and two weeks. My original contract and warranty expired after the first year.

Yesterday I was online and service dropped, not uncommon, so the first thing i did was check the weather because anything more than a sprinkle and you can count on service being interrupted. Weather was partly cloudy but not enough to interrupt service so i rebooted our modem(just unplug it for 15-20 seconds). It did not regain signal so i called technical service to see if there was an outage in our area(because you not only lose service if its raining on your end but if its raining on their end also!).

When the tech finally came on he went through the normal security check and then brought up my account. He had me reboot again while doing 'something' on his end and had me plug the modem back in. Still no service. He then informed me that there was a 'problem' with our dish that he could not fix remotely so it would require a service call. Since our warranty had expired two weeks earlier we would have to pay $95 for the technician plus any parts and labor.

Immediatly i was on guard and argued that it was only two week out from a year, that if their equipment suddenly fails it should be covered and I was not about to shell out more money. We went round and round and finally I refused a service technician and he informed me that if i wanted to continue Wildblue service i could call back and schedule the maintenance call.

I discussed it with other family members and since we were already unhappy paying $60 a month for service that was barely better than dial-up, that dropped every time it rained and had constant periods of varying lag(I game on line and you cannot imagine how annoying it is to hit a key in an important situation and have nothing happen for 4-5 seconds!) So we decided to cancel and just go back to dialup because the is no other broadband option in this area.

I called Wildblue customer service back and informed them of our decision. They wanted to try technical support again but i refused saying i was fed up and just wanted to end service. They first tried to convince me otherwise then finally sent me to a service rep to start the cancellation procedure. After 4 or 5 minutes with her my modem miraculously came back online and service was restored! I informed the lady working with me on cancelling and told her I'll keep service for now. We are cancelling at the end of this pay cycle but decided to use the rest of this prepaid month because of course we would not be reimbursed for the next two weeks.

Was it a scam? I certainly think it was. Nothing physically had happened to our equipment obviously, and how easy is it for them who control equipment and programming from their location to fake an error and get customers to shell out extra cash on top of their already ridiculous prices? I used to work in computers so have a good understanding of how things work so wasn't pulled in by them but how many other customers just never realize it and end up giving up hard earned money to Wildblue?

Disgusted with the state of things,

Jeff Stewart

P.S. - since writing this i have read a lot of negative reviews about wildblue so please don't just take my word, do a little searching and read other reviews also.
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USN - Retired
Ex Member

Reply #1 - Aug 5th, 2008 at 6:06pm  
I won't go so far as to support any scam allegations, but your experience is typical of the reports I've heard over the years about their tech support competency level. I think yours was just a case of "somebody tripped over the cord". You've heard I'm sure about users restarting and/or power cycling modems. I think the mindset at Wildblue (about the problem always being at the customer end) probably makes them overlook the fact that there's stuff to be reset at their end as well

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Ex Member

Reply #2 - Mar 5th, 2017 at 9:47pm  
You may not be aware that the person you called (if legitimate) can actually give you a satellite performance check remotely. I had much of the same problem as you so I used my analog satellite meter and did an alignment of the dish. This is a bit tricky since the system had both transmit and receive signals using the same cable. I used a dc blocker splitter to keep the transmit signal from being fed to my meter. This way, I used only the receive signal to align the dish. Worked fine! You may also insure you don't have malware affecting you computer and slowing things down as I did also.  ED.
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