Sympatico Does Not Do It Again…

Posted on September 12, 2008. Filed under: Trends | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

On a recent service call I did a speed test on a client’s internet connection. I now do this as a matter of course during any service call regardless of the ISP they are using.

In this case the ISP was Bell Sympatico. The test netted a download speed of 577 KB/s and upon inquiring with the customer they confirmed they were paying for 7 MB/s. Wow. Not bad. They were only getting 8% of their rated maximum throughput!

What was interesting about this visit was several fold:


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More on Bell Sympatico

Posted on September 8, 2008. Filed under: Trends | Tags: , |

I am not getting into the specifics here but in the past week this is what I have experienced with Bell Sympatico:

  1. Called on behalf of customer re. speed issue (160 KB/s). Tech support insisted on upgrading client to 8 MB/s. Client wanted 500 KB/s. Tech support ignored client’s wishes and upgraded to 8 MB/s without client consent. Coincidentally Bell called client to bundle services and verified upgraded ISP service. Downgraded on client request.
  2. Speed tested one client. Paying for 5 MB/s and getting 2 MB/s.
  3. 3 clients complain of not being able to understand the accents of Bell Sympactico tech support representative. Several clients have had so much trouble understanding the representatives they have requested I call on their behalf.
  4. Tech support continually wants to upsell or change services instead of solving problem. They will NOT admit a problem and simply state that changing the service solves the problem.

Relating to item 1 and 4: this is a particularly disturbing call because the technical support representative was so aggressively maintaining the need to upgrade to 8 MB/s it bares the question:  Are tech support representaives on commission? I was in sales and the only thing I can think of to explain that tech support rep’s aggression (and I do mean aggression) to have my client buy that level of service is that they are being payed or spiffed for changing client accounts to a higher level of service.

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Bell Sympatico Customer “Service”

Posted on July 30, 2008. Filed under: General | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Wow. What a hassle!

I was on a service call to a client’s place and the following transpired trying to solve an email configuration problem in Outlook Express.

Part 1

The client could not send emails so I checked his setup in the email account profile. Surprise, surprise! The settings were out of date. This client has been a Sympatico user since 1998 and some time ago Sympatico changed the way the email accounts need to be configured. (more…)

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Recent Blog Posts re. Sandvine and traffic throttling

Posted on July 28, 2008. Filed under: Trends | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

CIPPIC seeks comments on Bell/Rogers throttling

Who should pay for the new net?

Why Comcast Can’t Appeal — A Story of Prior Notice and Procedural Problems.

CTIA Ponders “Open”

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81.5% of emails sent in June were Spam

Posted on July 25, 2008. Filed under: Trends | Tags: , , , |


With that high a percentage of internet email traffic being malicious and of no value you would think the major Canadian ISPs would do something about it.

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Sandvine Hit Over Net Neutrality Issues

Posted on July 8, 2008. Filed under: Hardware, Software, Trends | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Seems there is a backlash from the products Sandvine offers and the net neutrality debate going on in the United States, Canada, and elsewhere may continue to negatively impact this company on the short to medium term.

Factors undermining the forecast include “the effect of the network neutrality debate on Sandvine’s North American installed base, the reduced predictability associated with expansion into new markets such as Sandvine’s entrance into the tier-one DSL and wireless markets, and the increasing number of opportunities being pursued through the indirect sales channel,” the company stated.

I do not wish ill on Sandvine but this story only hi-lights the forces at work as this debate goes on.

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Updated Information Re. Sympatico Traffic Throttling

Posted on July 2, 2008. Filed under: Trends | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

It seem that the numbers do not add up. This is the percentage of number of congested links taken from the most populous subscriber bases that Bell has. If you look at it it appears not that serious at all. Not near the doom and gloom Bell would have you believe.

For more information on this story see:

Link 1

Link 2

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Bell Sympatico/Bellnet Speed Issue

Posted on July 2, 2008. Filed under: Service Alert | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

I was one of the first Bell Sympatico clients in this area. I had the old Nortel modem and had decent service. Compared to dial-up it was a dream but eventually as I wanted more speed the problems started to occur:

  • Service drop-outs lasting minutes at a time.
  • Service outages averaging once a week.
  • Power supplies on old Nortel modem failing 3 times and 5 business days to get a new one.
  • New Speedstream modem does not suppot new speed package as I am too far from the concentrator.

This week I called Bellnet tech support for a client and they have been paying for 6 MB/s internet access for years only to find out they can only get 1 MB/s! The “solution” was offered to “upgrade” the client to the new wireless internet access. Sure it was $6.00 cheaper per month but it was half as fast as the client was expecting from their original service.

It totally amazes me that someone would bother selling such services when the advertised thoughput is no where near the client’s actual experienc.

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Symantec Products: Norton Antivirus Family

Posted on May 28, 2008. Filed under: Software | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I have a low opinion of Norton Antivirus (NAV) and the family of products that Symantec produces. Time and time I do service calls and find this insidious software residing when it is APPARENTLY removed…


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Hotmail was slow/down/unavailable

Posted on May 8, 2008. Filed under: General | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Hotmail was down for at least 18 hours starting sometime Wednesday morning. It was slow to render the main page and would not load. So your intrepid Consultant wrote Hotmail “support”: (more…)

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