Synopsis

HughesNet satellite internet services, also known as Hughes Network Systems, and SPACEWAY provide poor broadband services, customer service, and technical support.   In this blog, you will learn what you might come to expect if you should choose HughesNet as your internet service provider through the author’s experiences.

November 5, 2009 at 7:48 pm 1 comment

Chapter 8: The “Fair” Access Policy Threshold

My computer had not been online in a long time seeing as how we didn’t have internet and all, so when we finally got HughesNet one of the first things I did was make sure I had all my critical Windows updates installed, had updated virus scan definitions, and checked for firewall updates.  The process of updating these three things in order to safely use the internet caused the Fair Access Policy to kick on.  My download threshold had been exceeded by running updates. (Grudge #13- Punished for Practicing Safe Browsing, Installing Critical Updates) 

After the Fair Access Policy (FAP) had been kicked on my browsing speeds were slower than dial up.  The web browser actually would give up on it, and say “this webpage is unavailable.”  I was told it would be slow, but not unusable! (Grudge #14- FAP Shuts Internet Down not Slow it Down)

I called HughesNet to explain that I was a new customer, and was just trying to get my computer updated so I could use it.  They said they understood that, but I exceeded the download limit for the day and there was absolutely nothing that they could do.  I asked if they could reset it somehow, and they said they are not authorized to do that.  I asked to speak to a manager, and they argued with me telling me the manager would tell me the same thing.  After speaking to “the manager” it was obvious customer service was horrible.  They didn’t understand the issue at all, and were not compromising whatsoever. (Grudge #15- Poor Customer Service.)   I was infuriated by my first experience, and to top it off the call centers are all operated in India. (Grudge #16-Call Centers Operated in India)

November 6, 2009 at 8:06 pm Leave a comment

Chapter 7: Welcome to HughesNet

After several weeks of dealing with incompetent installation people we were finally online.  The truth is it was pretty disappointing.  Remember that “lightning fast internet” thing they advertised?  Well, it was a lot more like watching Frogger.  Almost done loading…OK..wait nope..yup we’re there!  In college I had the same speed internet plan, but only it was cable internet and it ran a lot faster.  I felt conned, so I ran numerous independent speed tests verifying we weren’t ever getting the maximum speeds promised.  (Grudge #12- Slower Than Advertised Speeds)  This was upsetting news, so I called HughesNet Customer Service to report my findings.  They said it might run slow for the first few days, but then it would get better.  Hmmmm…..I’m not a technical Guru, but that sounds fishy to me.

November 6, 2009 at 8:05 pm Leave a comment

Chapter 6: Installation Day (Attempt #3)

This time, I took a half day off work as the installation company was coming in the afternoon.  When I called to re-schedule, I reminded them to bring the right equipment for the job, and not to be late again as I was extremely unhappy with service thus far.  Apparently, this didn’t mean anything because guess what?  They showed up late again.  The sun was setting, and we were entering twilight.  I wasted yet another day not working to be there, and they messed it up again.  I was furious, but I needed to get the internet going because my wife was waiting to start her online courses, and I had real estate business I really needed the internet for. .  (Grudge #8- Arriving Late Again) 

When the installers arrived, I showed them where they could put the mounting pole and satellite dish.  The previous installers had already approved this location for the dish as well, so I knew it would be able to get good reception.  I then showed them where I wanted the cables to enter into the home.  It was very easy as there were already other cables for satellite television entering into the same location in the attic, and it was easily accessible from inside.  I was very specific and clear about these directions, because a hole in your siding is a pretty ugly thing, and if cables are running out that hole it can look really bad!  The location I requested would have been out of the way and hardly noticeable from the outside.

I let them do their thing, and finished eating dinner.  When I returned to check up on the progress I noticed that mud had been dragged throughout the house!  It went from the front door up two sets of stairs, into the attic, and to my computer desk across marble floors and carpeting!  WET MUD DRAGGED TRHOUGHOUT THE HOME.  It wasn’t just a little bit either, but enough to fill up a big dust pan full.  I know this, because I filled up a dust pan full of mud after they left and that’s not counting what was vacuumed up.  .  (Grudge #9- Not Respecting the Home.  Take Off Your Boots!)

I then went outside to see if they had drilled the hole yet.  They had indeed drilled the hole in the wrong location!  I was furious, but held my cool.  I confronted the gentlemen about why he had not drilled in the location I requested.  He said he didn’t know where it would enter into the house, and wanted to make sure he drilled it into the attic.  This didn’t make sense, because all he had to do was go into the attic and drill out next to the other cables. .  (Grudge #10- Failure to Comply with Simple Requests) 

 It was getting really late, so I didn’t want to argue.  They had problems adjusting the dish properly so it could get a good signal, and then they had problems enabling the internet to my computer.  It took them several hours before everything was finally working.  They were at my home until close to 11 pm.  We all had to work in the morning, and were obviously not pleased.  It was a very uncomfortable situation.  I complained about the entire experience later, and even asked for a credit back or free pole.  My request was denied.   (Grudge #11- Poor Time Management, Customer Relations.) 

November 6, 2009 at 8:03 pm Leave a comment

Chapter 5: Installation Day (AGAIN!)

The second time around, and another week later, the installers said they couldn’t do the installation because they don’t mount satellite dishes onto cedar shingle shake style roofs.  They could have told me this a long time ago!  I asked why this was, and they said it was too risky to put holes in the roof as it could leak.  I told them that we already had mounting hardware on the roof where the Direct TV satellite dish and antenna were installed, and that their satellite only had to be attached onto this pre-mounted hardware- no drilling into the roof needed!  I thought this was a pretty easy solution, but they refused to do the install regardless claiming the dish was just too heavy, and they didn’t have the right type of bracket to secure to the tripod anyways!  Can you smell the horse shit yet?  I could hang off the mounting bracket on the roof.  It is a tripod style three point secured bracket with room to mount equipment on all three legs, plus the extension that rises above the tripod.  Anyways, they said I would have to mount the dish onto a pole, and the pole was an extra $125!  This is really beginning to stink.  They then proceed to tell me that they don’t actually have a pole with them nor do they have the proper dish to mount to the pole!  They had to re-schedule yet again.  (Grudge #7- Scam Customers into Buying $125 Poles)

November 6, 2009 at 7:58 pm Leave a comment

Chapter 1: Research

In the late spring of 2008 we came to the realization that we needed high speed internet, and our only option was to use a satellite internet service provider.  My wife needed the internet for taking classes at a major online university, and I needed it for my real estate business.   

I did some research comparing our satellite options, prices, and service plans available.  The immediate difference that sprung out to me was start up costs and service plans were much more expensive compared to cable (Grudge #1- More Expensive Monthly Fees) See Figure 1 for Price Comparison table. 

Hughes Net Price Comparison

HughesNet Price Comparison

November 5, 2009 at 8:14 pm 2 comments

Chapter 4: Installation Day

I was told the installer would call to set up a time to hook up the equipment, and it took a good week before I actually heard from them.  When they called, I scheduled the earliest possible install date which was another 10-15 days out!  (Grudge #5- Slow Install) 

I took the day off work for installation day.  When the installer was an hour late I tried calling HughesNet to find out what was going on.  They had no idea, because they contract the installation out to various companies.  It took them a while to track down the contracted company in order to have them give me a call.  A few hours later I finally received a call from the installation company.  They told me the installation guy had technical difficulties and was running late.  He had one more installation to do, and then would be heading my way.  They gave me an ETA of 6 pm.  I felt this was a little late to begin an installation, but I wasn’t about to cancel and have to wait another two weeks before somebody was in our area.  At around 6 pm the installation guy called to say he was on his way running late yet again.  When I inquired as to where he was he indicated he was in a town that I knew was located a good hour away from my location.  By the time he got to our home it would have been dark, so I inquired as to whether or not he could install a satellite dish on top a roof in the dark.  He said he’s done it before.  After a few moments considering this, I decided to have him re-schedule for a more appropriate time.  I felt it was a huge liability having somebody on the steep roof installing a dish at night with no lights!  (Grudge #6- Failure to Show Up!)

November 5, 2009 at 4:38 pm Leave a comment

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