Speed Bump

Tired of SBC/Yahoo! dropping our DSL connection two or three times a day, and slobbering over the promise of 3Mbps, made the jump from DSL to Comcast cable today (our contract was about to expire anyway). Expected the worst, but the install couldn’t have gone smoother (including Le Cable Dude stringing coax to the other side of the house, making child’s play of the impossibly cramped rabbit hole we call a crawl space. 30 minutes later, we’re ripping.

Had heard some bad things about DNS latency issues with cable connections, but so far it’s running like an electric pig slathered in deep-fat-fried butterballs (that’s a good thing). Ran the dslreports speed test just before disconnecting DSL and then again just after bringing up the cable:

SBC/Yahoo! DSL:
622kbps down
309kbps up
57ms latency
Comcast cable:
2956kbps down
1423 up
59ms latency

IOTW, nearly 5x faster in both directions, at roughly the same price. What remains to be seen is whether Comcast will extend the introductory rate indefinitely, as SBC had offered to do.

Compare to average broadband speeds in other countries:

Average broadband download speed in the US is 1.9 Mbps. It is 61 Mbps in Japan, 45 Mbps in South Korea, 18 Mbps in Sweden, 17 Mpbs in France, and 7 Mbps in Canada.

Coda: Called in to cancel the SBC service, and selected “Disconnect service” from the phone tree menu — which of course landed me on hold for 40 minutes. Finally couldn’t wait anymore, so Amy said she’d try it later in the day. She waited on hold for 20 minutes, then hung up and called back. This time she selected “Connect new service.” Big surprise, she was talking to a helpful rep in 2 minutes flat. The rep asked why we were canceling. Amy: “Because the service sucked.” Rep: “So I’ll just write down ‘Customer regrets that they were unable to resolve technical difficulties with the service.'” Amy: “Could you also write that the customer regrets that she and her husband were made to wait over an hour on hold between the two of them?” Rep: “Sorry about that. Amy: “Could you also write down that the customer regrets that AT&T chose to have her listen to “Message in a Bottle” while on hold?” The rep dutifully wrote down her comments, then read them back. “Customer regrets having to listen to Message in a Bottle while on hold.” “Anything else?” “That’ll do it,” Amy responded. And that was that. File under “Reasons why I love my wife, #246.”

Music: Stereolab :: One Note Samba-Surfboard

4 Replies to “Speed Bump”

  1. Just a castaway, an island lost at sea, oh
    Another DSL day, slow-ass TCP, oh
    More on-hold times than any man could bear
    Rescue me before I fall into despair.com, oh

    I’ll send a SYN/ACK flood to the world
    I’ll send a SYN/ACK flood to the world
    I hope that someone gets my
    I hope that someone gets my
    I hope that someone gets my
    Message in a bottle, yeah

  2. Can’t top mnep’s filk song :) But I can gloat about the Verizon FiOS we got installed at our new house last week.

    15 Mbps down (2 Mbps up). And that’s just the medium price plan. Speedtest later on the day of the install showed I was actually getting 27 Mbps down :D

  3. Whoa! This was not even on my radar. If it turns out similar service was available in our area and I missed it, I’m going to eat some dirt. That’s the kind of speed I thought you had to move to S. Korea to get.

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