Friday, July 15, 2005

Switching to Streamyx


For want of a better means to access the web I finally made the switch to Streamyx.  But at a great cost.  I had to forget about the RM75 prepaid balance left in my Jaring account.  And practically throwing away my dial-up modem.  No sense hanging on to that anyway.  To utilise that I would have to run up another RM112.50 in telephone charges and more frustration.  Everytime I log on I had to find something to chew on to prevent myself from falling asleep waiting for something to show up on the screen.  On top of that you could get cut-off in the middle of downloading something or doing a transaction.  It was definitely getting worse recently. 


Last weekend was the worst when it was totally inaccessible.  For 3 whole days I couldn't read emails nor get into my blog.  I 'shitted' and cursed the PC (quietly so that my kids couldn't hear me) and banged on the keyboard.  Luckily it was made to withstand this kind of treatment.  The people who designed it probably knew how frustrated people can get when using PCs, especially with the kind of dial-up service we have.


But connecting to Streamyx wasn't a breeze either.  I managed to get a friend to get me a modem.  I installed it myself.  That was the easy part.  To get connected I have to call the connection centre.  Everytime I called, the voice said, "Your call is valuable to us.  We are sorry but all our agents are occupied at the moment.  Please wait...." 

They played some slow music (trying to lull my senses).  A minute later the music stopped and the voice said the same thing again.  That same piece was repeated about every minute.  In my mind, the telephone bill was ringing up the charges.  After hearing about how valuable my call was for about a dozen times I'd already knew how valuable it was.  It was definitely not going down.  It was definitely valuable to them, but not to me.


I wondered if things are done differently elsewhere.  Here, we are tested for our patience everytime for whatever we need, as if we're not having to pay for it.  Are we really progressing?



  1. Sadly, it's the same for most companies. "Customer support" is usually an afterthought to a company. It's regarded as an expense. Most short-sighted executives never realize that poor customer support reflects badly on the company and will result in loss of a customer. Usually, a disgruntled customer can take his/her business elsewhere. Unfortunately, it's not the case with near-incumbents such Jaring, Streamyx or Telekom.

  2. i tought there is suppose to be a free modem that comes with the registration. how come uncle u went to get one on ur own? which pakage did u pick? anyway, internet is finally available at my place

  3. I chose the RM44 package (60 hours per month free - any extras = 1 sen/min). I figured out I don't use that much anyway. The one with "free" modem cost RM88/mth. I don't need to log on all day.....

  4. I live in the UK. I share your trauma being at the mercy of customer relations via telephone. However, I'm glad I don't have any problems with broadband here. Often, to avoid doing lasting damage to my telephone or other household items due to frustration of being put on hold, I start the conversation along these lines: 'I know this call is recorded for training purposes. Can I take this opportunity to record my complaint that your service is appallingly slow. Now, my inquiry is...'

    I suppose one can't say the exact same thing to a Malaysian man-handling such services, for there might not be a recording, we are really at this person's mercies, and s/he might hang-up and we have to go through the entire mind-numbing, pocket-emptying experience all over again. We might have to say a silent prayer not to be man-handled by the same individual on our second attempt!

    Like in Malaysia, broadband packages here come with various monthly usage duration, or unlimited duration, with different capacities. But, everyone can stay connected for as long as they want, whenever they like, without having to contact the service providers first to connect them. I never knew such a procedure exists until I read your article. Is this another form of Big Brother monitor on broadband users?

    Such travesty which ruled out competition which effectively ruled out good deals for consumers, ensuring that we pay through the nose for shoddy (unheard of) inconvenience.

  5. Thanks Anisah, for your input.

    I can't say we've grown accustomed to having most of our services monopolised. Not unless we're totally cut off from the rest of the world, which is impossible nowadays. We get experieinces and feedbacks from elsewhere and we make comparisons and then we get impatient, then we start bugging our public servants for improvements. Somehow, we view globalisation as a blessing. For now we just keep voicing out and hope that things will get better. Definitely takes a lot of patience to avoid breaking things while being put on hold.....