Is AT&T run by clowns, idiots, or both? That question was raised by a recent letter (below). I’d like to summarize its contents, but frankly I’m not even sure what the company is trying to sell me. In the first paragraph they seem to think I’m a current customer. Wrong. We kicked uVerse out of our home office at the end of January. (Unsolicited plug for Sonic.net, giving us terrific internet and customer service.) But in the second paragraph they invite me to rejoin uVerse.
We left uVerse because, frankly, the service was terrible. We were forced to switch from our ancient AT&T DSL modem to a router. The router was actually quite nice, a Pace model 5031NV. Except it wasn’t. The geniuses at AT&T had removed about half the router’s brain. Specifically, there was no command-line interface, a recommended way to get the router into bridge mode.
Let me back up and remind newcomers about our network setup. We have a SonicWall TZ-200W security router that has protected our home office network from incredible volumes of malware. Most of our network is connected through the SonicWall. But the SonicWall needs to connect to the internet. All we need, want, and desire is a simple DSL modem. Instead we got uVerse, complete with data rate throttling, constant signal drops, and a host of other defects. Calls to tech support were laughable. I have a transcript of an online chat session that ends with the “tech support rep” offering to reset my password. (Transcript available on request via e-mail attachment.)
So, instead, we got uVerse, complete with a brain-dead router, continuous DNS drops, and service that was unreliable (to put it mildly). We put up with uVerse because I use the internet to manage classes I’m teaching and we didn’t want an interruption until late December, 2013. But once we got to that point it was, “Bye-bye uVerse,welcome Sonic.net.”
Which brings me back to the latest letter from AT&T. You may not be able to read the image below. If that’s a problem, click here for a pdf file that should work.
So the question remains: is AT&T run by clowns, idiots, or both?