I was a customer in love with DirecTV. Never had one problem in almost four years. I had the wonderful DirecTV Tivo box. While paying my bill online, I noticed that DirecTV were offering boxes that held up to 100 hours. My old box only held 30. So I decided to "upgrade". And while I was at it, I decided to have a DVR installed in our bedroom as well. So DirecTV sent me a box for the living room, and scheduled a tech to come out to set up the bedroom.
WORST MISTAKE EVER!!!
I did not realize before it arrived that this “new” box was not a Tivo, nor was it new, but refurbished. I was sent the R15 100. It was CLEARLY not a Tivo; the features could not even compare (where is my Season Pass? My wishlist?)! But I figured, ah well, I will learn to love this as I loved my Tivo.
Unfortunately, before I could start this new affair, the box crapped out. Right away it gave me problems: Black screen where recorded shows should be, freezing, etc. After HOURS and HOURS on tech support (resetting, re-downloading updates, finally re-formatting the hard drive- in which I lost all the shows I had been able to record), DirecTV FINALLY said they would send me a replacement box.
However, before it showed up, the installers showed up to hook up the bedroom. Now- while they were setting the room up for DVR, this room already had the regular DirecTV box in there. So when the guy from Ironwood Communications tells me he needs $75.00 before he will start work, I was confused. He mentioned something about having to wall fish and that being the cause for the charge. I felt it was odd since I had been promised “Free Installation” but ah well, I wrote him a check. He does the work, while the “new guy” he was training did god knows what. He sends the newbie out to have me sign saying the work was complete, and while doing so made some off color comments to me. At that point I just wanted them out. They leave, and I realize there is NO mention whatsoever on my copy of the receipt that I paid them any money or that any special work was done. Then I get to thinking, what the hell did they do that was so special? Wall fishing? Uh, there was already a cable going from the satellite to the old box, didn’t they just follow that? Eventually we were able to get Ironwood to shred the check, but I was still feeling a little ripped off.
But then, the next day, guess what? THE SAME DAMN PROBLEMS START HAPPENING IN THE BEDROOM. So I call DirecTV and ask them to send me a NEW box instead of another refurbished one, since so far, the two they had sent me were both faulty. They informed me that was not going to ever happen, if I wanted a new box I would have to purchase one (What was the $99 for, since I guess I am leasing these from them?!) And mind you, this is after night after night of dealing with tech support and lost shows. They do tell me that should any more problems arise, I will be assigned “CASE MANAGEMENT” so that I do not have to jump from tech to tech every time I have problems, and will be given one person who will know who I am and have been going through. That is great, but I hope the replacements will just WORK AS THEY SHOULD and I have no need for any more assistance.
Now, I might also mention that every time I have to unhook one box and hook up a replacement, it means losing any shows I had in my playlist. It also means having to once again set up the Prioritizer, remotes, etc. And it means having to wait for the Guide whiles it S L O W L Y gets the correct info. All of which is taking time and losing shows.
So they send me a replacement for the living room and a replacement for the bedroom. The replacements are R15 500s. The living room one is another refurbished one that is all scratched up, but luckily the bedroom one came brand new.
Everything was fine for about one and a half weeks. I was finally adjusting to life without the glorious DirecTV DVR, when BAM! The living room box freezes in the middle of a show. I had to unplug the box to get it to come back up. I hoped that was the end of the problems, but of course LMAO, it was not. Two nights ago, I happen to walk into the living room at 8:55. I look over at the box, which should have the “Record” button lit up as it was supposed to be recording two programs at 8:00. But of course, the whole box is dark and unresponsive. So I reset, and get the blue “Hello” screen. Then BAM! Back to black. I reset again and it finally comes on, but of course, I am out of luck on my two shows. I also notice that the 2 shows that were supposed to record at 7:00 actually did not start until 7:12, meaning I missed the 1st ¼ of them.
I am really upset now, because once again, I have lost shows and am having to deal with a crappy product. I head to bed, making sure the box is working. Then last night, I get home from work, about to head out to dinner, when I notice that the box is ONCE AGAIN dead. I reset, reset, reset, make sure my shows are all set to record, and then I call DirecTV. I explain the situation, and also mention that I would like to have the Case Management set up, especially since it took going through 3 techs before anyone was willing to help me. 1st, he asks me if the box is plugged in. SERIOUSLY. Can he not see in his computer that I have been through the ringer and have tried all the steps before I call? But whatever, not too big of a deal. Then he tells me as far as the Case Management goes, no problem, he will set that up and be right back. But OF COURSE, when he comes back, he informs me that I am not eligible for C.M. (even though I was previously told I would be) He says all he can do is send out a tech to see what the problem is, and that he will bring a replacement box. I explain that would be fine, however, I do not want anyone from Ironwood Communications coming into my house ever again due to the last incident. He informs me that they are the only company in the area that would be able to assist me (Really? In the whole North Bay?) Then he offers to just send a replacement, if I am comfortable hooking it up myself- which of course I am, I have already done it a couple times by now. And since I am now late for my dinner plans, I say fine, let’s just get this done.
So now I am ticked off about my ongoing drama with my once beloved company. I push past it though, and try to enjoy my dinner. Once I get home, I am relieved to see that the box is still up and running. UNTIL I CHECK THE PLAYLIST… and find that Survivor is missing. I guess the DVR just decided that I did not need to see it. You know, regardless of the fact that it is the top show on my Prioritizer. In the History list, not even a mention of it. That is bad enough, as I am ready to throw the freaking box out the window, but then when we sit down to watch Lost, about 10 minutes in, THE BOX SHUTS DOWN AGAIN. So, knowing the drill by now, I go and hit the reset button. Nothing. So I repeat. Nothing. This goes on for about 5 minutes, sometimes the box coming to life to say Hello, and then shutting down again, other times just ignoring me altogether. I finally unplug it, let it sit, and then plug it back in. It comes up, and we have no more problems the rest of the night. Oh, except the fact that one of the shows I was recording when the box shut down, is now completely gone, not a mention of it anywhere.
And now today. As I get ready for work, I head to the living room, and find that once again, the box is dead. I do my little song and dance with the reset button, and the power cord, but alas, nothing. So now, I am without a working box in the living room.
Will I be compensated? Hell no.
Will I have to continue to pay for service while I wait on the replacement to show up?
Will the replacement be another refurbished piece of crap that will in almost certainty screw up again? I would bet on it.
I might also mention that over the course of all my phone calls with tech support for each of the boxes, I have spent about 10 hours of my time and energy. When I asked a supervisor about any kind of compensation, he said all he could do was give me $5.00 off my Showtime for 3 months. WOW! A whole $15.00 off!! So basically, my time, energy and such is worth a whole $1.50 per hour. Thanks DirecTV! Thank you so much!
How about this- if you are cutting ties with Tivo, and are going to offer your own DVR boxes, how about you MAKE SURE THEY DAMN WELL WORK BEFORE YOU SEND THEM OUT??!! How about you don’t dick me around by sending me refurbished box after refurbished box and give me something that has even a chance of working?
Or better yet, how about you let me hook up my trusted Tivo again, and NOT charge me the $150.00 fee you say you will. I mean, crap, I agreed to another two years with you before I realized you were going to make my life hell, so you could at least do that.
Or wait, I know, what you really could do is check yourselves, and lick Tivo’s heals in hopes that they will take you back. If I had not agreed to the 2 more years, you can bet I would be long gone.
All I want is a product to work the way it is supposed to. And if said product fails to do so, that the company behind it remedy the situation. And if they cannot, then they should not be charging me for said product. In the whole time I had the DirecTV Tivo, I NEVER had one problem. Not one! Isn’t that pretty much how things are supposed to work?
Throughout this entire thing, I have remained calm, and friendly with the techs. I have not become one of those irate screaming customers, because working in customer service myself, I am fully aware that it is not the techs fault for the company’s bad business. HOWEVER- the buck now has to stop somewhere. I am LIVID and WILL be getting results, however I can.
All I wanted was to expand my hours from 30 to 100. That was it, simple and easy. And now I just want to be done with it. The pure and simple fact is that I am paying for a service that is not working, and that sucks. I want a resolution.
If you have read this far, bless you :> If you have any suggestions on how I could handle any of this, please let me know. I would greatly appreciate it!
Have a great day, and may Tivos be bestowed on all