Bare with me. This could get quite long and is the abridged version. Bare in mind this happened over just 48 hours.
As a quick explainer, my mum has a landline with Telstra. I have a Belong internet service on the same line. It works out for both of us because mum needs quarterly bills, and Telstra internet is too expensive for me to afford. Telstra recommended Belong to me after I ended my service with them because of cost (Belong is owned by Telstra, so will only connect using a Telstra landline).
Last month Telstra rang my mum to tell her NBN was available and needed to make appointments to change the landline over to NBN. Mum isn’t tech savvy at all and has a few health issues, so she passed the phone on to me. They told me they needed to get the appointments done because the copper network will be switched off and they didn’t know when, and appointments for the switch need to be made months in advance. I felt pressured so told them had to think about it.
They called back 23 May and got my mum to make me an authority on her account so I could deal with it. I told them felt was pressured and they said you should never feel that way at all. I explained how we had a set up and was told I could keep my current ISP, provided the modem was NBN compatible and mum her current line on Telstra. They would come out and switch the line to NBN 1 August and bring out a modem for the landline 6 August and install it. They said the billing cycle would change because it’s a new service. I said mum wouldn’t want that because it currently dovetails with her electricity bill the way it is. So they made a note to try and keep it the same. Was told there was a 10 day cooling off period and they would send the paper work out in the mail. Spoiler Alert: we still haven’t got it.
On Wednesday I woke up to find the internet wasn’t working. Re-cycled the modem and still nothing. All the lights were green on the modem so called Belong. Spoke to a brilliant person there who was a bit confused because my modem wasn’t showing on their end and we still had a dial tone on the phone. It was escalated up to her manager who said the ADSL connection was gone and it had been switched to NBN. I explained the previous interaction with Telstra. She told me to contact Telstra and since I no longer had an ADSL service available did I want to cancel the Belong service. I said I would wait to see what Telstra said.
Contacted Telstra using the number on the latest landline bill. They said there was no NBN and the order was scheduled for change over on 1 August. He ended up putting me thru to the Telstra ADSL team. They said it wasn’t connected to the NBN, and got me to make a call on the landline and called me on it to see if it still worked, It did so they said that still on the copper and the net should work and told me to contact Belong.
I rang Belong and spoke to another wonderful person. She checked everything and came to the same conclusion, that the line had been connected to NBN that day. Think the term used was the line was jacked to NBN. She gave me a LOC code and suggested I ring NBN to confirm it had been switched over. So I rang NBN and they confirmed that the order for Telstra had been completed that day. They had no record of a 1 August date. They told me to ring Telstra and also asked if I wanted to cancel the Belong service. I said I would wait to see what Telstra said.
So requested a call back from the person I had previously spoken to at Telstra. Someone else rang about 15 minutes later meaning I had to repeat everything. they said the net should be working coz wasn’t switched over, even tho I told them NBN had told me it had. I told them at the time of the initial call with Telstra in May that there was no way I could afford Telstra Internet. So I asked how much their NBN plans were. That meant the ADSL team member I had spoken to had to transfer me to the NBN sales department.
When speaking to them they told me the prices and I said couldn’t afford them. So they said they could speak to some kind of special deals team. He came back and said that because there is an outstanding order the special deals team couldnt actually offer me anything unless that order was cancelled but an offer would be about $10 off per month because I have a Telstra post-paid mobile. By this time I needed to go start work, and because the landline is my mums would need to discuss it with her first when I finished work.
After i got home, i dont finish work til mid-evening, and explained what had happened to mum it was late. Tried the call back link on the email the sales team member sent. When tried that I got a message saying it was after hours. So tried Telstra Live 24x7 chat on my mobile. They said the phone line was on copper and there was no reason why the line shouldnt have ADSL services running thru it. I gave them the LOC number and they asked who gave me the LOC number. I said Belong. They said they could’t access the LOC number coz of privacy coz it came from Belong and to call Belong.
So i called Belong. Explained the situation. Again. This person went thru tests again and said modem wasnt showing up at their end. got me to do a hard reset. Still nothing, so she escalated it to tech. The next morning i realised that i wasn’t given a modem login or password after the hard reset, so rang them again.
The guy I spoke to was quite good, gave me the login and pw, butmodem still wasnt showing up. He put me on hold and spoke to Telstra techs. the techs told him they could send someone out to check the line but they would probably say that it was coz it was connected to the NBN and asked if i wanted them to come out. He said that the LOC numbers can be accessed by any ISP using the NBN portal and the LOC stays with each street address when it’s connected to the NBN. He asked if I wanted to cancel the Belong service. I said I would wait to see what Telstra said. I told him I would try Telstra again to cancel the order first.
Used the call back link to the guy in sales and had to explain it to him again. Told him wanted to cancel the order. While he had me on hold I had a call from Belong. Explained i was on the phone to Telstra and they said they would speak to me later. When got back to the guy from Telstra told him Belong had called and he asked what they said. I pretty much said nothing new.He went ahead and cancelled the order and put me thru to another department in Telstra to talk about cancelling the order. She said it would take 24-48 hours for the cancellation to go theu, and then i could contact them about the special deal. While this was happening on the phone I got 2 txts from Belong saying they were sending a tech out this morning to check the line.
I tried a couple of other ISPs to see what they were offering, one had great customer service on the phone, the other had bad phone service but great social media team service. While at work had a missed call from Telstra about cancelling the order. They left a voicemail saying if had questions call them. Got home and saw from work and saw the internet light had turned red and the DSL light was off.
Tried calling Telstra backon the number in the voicemail and it was out of hours. Tweeted the Telstra SM team asking if i DM’d the order number could they let me know anything. They told me that could only be done thru Telstra 24x7 chat.
The tech arrived this morning earlier than stated. He asked questions about which service etc. He said Telstra had sent him out not Belong. Long story short, he plugged it back into ADSL. Both myself and the tech were very confused as to what was happening. he had to speak to 3 different people in 3 different departments and was raising his voice at both us and Telstra. Told me it was now an authentication issue with the modem now it was back on ADSL and call Belong. So now the authentication issue is resolved, been plugged back into ADSL and now have my internet back.
After this think it is highly likely will switch to the 1st different ISP i contacted yesterday. Mum wants a landline when we switch to NBN and Belong only have data NBN plans.