I despise the 8,000 pound Philadelphia gorilla known as Comcast.
I signed up for DirecTV and the guy is coming to install it today.
But picture this: On my HBO Channel, a crawl runs across the bottom of my screen with the following message:
ACTION IS REQUIRED ON YOUR PART to continue to receive HBO. As of March 28, you will no longer be able to view HBO without a digital cable box. Please contact Comcast at 1-800-COMCAST to get a digital cable box.
This message—in very large type—runs continually 24/7 during the programming and totally destroys the viewing experience.
I called 1-800-COMCAST to see what would happen and got the de rigueur recorded female voice:
Thank you for calling Comcast.
For English, Press 1
Por Espanol gibberish gibberish
For trouble with your service, press 1
For billing inquiries, press 2
To add or upgrade your current service, press 3
Transfer, downgrade or discontinue service, press 4
Nothing on this recorded menu dealt with HBO or new cable boxes. I pressed nothing. The message was repeated, and again I pressed nothing. The recorded voice came on and said, “For quality and training purposes, your call may be monitored.”
This was followed by commercials for HDTV, digital voice and an invitation to “Visit us at www.Comcast.net.”
When the telephone rep came on the line, she told me that all premium channels would be going to digital and that three new digital cable boxes would cost $1 each. This would take our monthly bill up to $140 a month, or $1,680 a year, for roughly 75 channels and high-speed Internet access.
DirecTV is 185 channels for $59.95 a month.
Comcast’s rude crawl over the HBO channel and exorbitant pricing are deal killers.
The Goofball Sales Rep From Verizon
When the Verizon FSI—with its offer of high-speed Internet for $21.99/month—arrived in my morning Inquirer, I took it up to the office and saved it. Since I was dropping Comcast cable in favor of DirecTV, why not switch to Verizon for Internet service and save another $23.