If like me, you are a web developer who relies on a stable internet connection for working from home or for your own Raspberry Pi project, I strongly urge you not to choose Plus.net as your ISP. This the story of my experience, and why I will never spend a penny with Plus.net again.
Having used plus.net (and recommended them to friends and family) for a few years, we were completely happy with the service we had received. Whenever we had problems, they were quickly resolved. As you might have noticed, Plus.net have driven their marketing activities quite heavily over the past couple of years. As they marketed more, we noticed longer waits on the phone when we did need support, but nothing prepared us for our recent support experience and lack of service.
We've had 6 long weeks of poor internet and terrible customer service
Our broadband stopped working, and the support representative advised that the issue was with our aging router. They provided a new router on the condition that we committed to a contract with them. We did this and received what can only be described as a cheap, white little router. Our service was poor following the installation of the router.
Our product is the Unlimited Fibre service, which boasts up to 70mbit down and 20mbit up. After running a speed test (on the BT Wholesale speed checker) we found that our service was more like 7mbit down and just under 1mbit up – considerably less than the service we were supposed to be getting. We experienced continual packet drop, and the internet was unusable. Downloads wouldn't complete, images came through corrupted, only half of the response was received from HTTP requests.
On 28th June we made a support request. Plus.net conducted some tests and found there was indeed a fault (full support transcript is below). They eventually arranged an appointment with a BT engineer for 12th July (2 weeks after the complaint was made), and I took a day off work as annual leave to wait for the technician. He never showed up. I then received a voicemail from BT blaming Plus.net, saying he had been booked but hadn't received any information as to what he was supposed to be doing.
I wasn't too happy, but made another appointment, this time for 15th July. The engineer no-showed for a second time after me taking more annual leave. This time I was very annoyed. I called Plus.net and explained that I was very angry and wanted to lodge a formal complaint. The issue was passed from person to person, and everything went quiet once more. By this point, it was the 25th, almost a full month since the original issue was logged. in my pursuit for a resolution, I made a series of complaints about my experience in the public domain on Twitter and on thinkbroadband.co.uk, and unsurprisingly, Plus.net were very apologetic and quick to respond.
They assured me that I wouldn't experience any more issues booking appointments, eventually a BT engineer showed up on Friday 8th August – yet another day requiring annual leave. He was extremely thorough and concluded that the fault was either with Plus.net or the supplied equipment. After waiting for an absolutely ridiculous amount of time waiting for Plus.net to resolve the issue I decided to seek independent advice. After the installation of a new router (at cost to myself) the service worked fine, and the issue was in fact with the cheap router provided by Plus.net following our renewal.
I'm seeking early termination of my contact following woefully poor prolonged level of service and a terrible support experience.
What I've learned
- Plus.net are quickly to blame BT for missed appointments
- They provide absolutely terrible support, taking 3 or 4 days to respond to support requests
- Don't plan on using your holiday time for a holiday: I've lost 3 days annual leave due to this issue and engineer no-shows
- They refused to put in writing who was at fault for the missed appointment after requesting it in my complaint
- They are quick to act when you finally lose patience and put your complaint in the public domain
Why am I putting my experience in the public domain?
I want anyone considering Plus.net to know exactly how they treat long standing customers before they make the mistake of joining. I want Plus.net to understand the consequences of my poor experience, and hope they read this. Plus.net staff, I am a web applications developer by profession. This blog is read by over 16,000 people a month, a lot of people are to going see this. I will ensure that this article is optimised to reach the largest possible audience; I suggest you don't treat any other industry professionals like I have been treated.
I want to conclude by thanking the staff that I did speak to, who were genuinely helpful and polite when I called. My complaint is not with them directly; it is with the time taken for this to be sorted, and the amount of wasted time I've had over the past 6 weeks for something as simple as a router issue.