Since I recently saved $40 on my internet bill, I had to do some research on internet providers. They really have a lot of weird stuff going on and they aren’t that incentivized to change their behavior. You can read more on my company’s blog about some of the things, but one thing that really annoyed me is finding a modem to use with RCN.
I had actually purchased a modem (ARRIS Surfboard something), slight mistake on what modem I bought, but there was no way for me to find out what modems were compatible with my internet provider! I actually googled what would be compatible but bought one that isn’t because it was now outdated since the article was written a year ago (this all happened ~3 years ago), and I misunderstood what the channel requirements were (8×4 is not 24 channels), but I thought since I was buying a pretty good modem it should be OK. So I wasted less than $100 and I was going to get a new modem, but now I didn’t have internet for a few days without their modem so I had to use theirs temporarily. Well, then I tried to find out what modem to get and I still don’t know what’s fully compatible. Because if I hook up a modem to the connection, they give me a list of modems that are completely outdated (much worse than the one I had), and say they are the only valid modems. Furthermore, you have to register your modem with them in order to get it to work, which requires making a phone call, etc. which is a huge pain in the butt because I don’t want to be out of internet for even one second and I definitely don’t want to risk buying a modem without knowing for sure it will work. And then you have to physically walk to one of their stores to return the modem you borrowed which is really absurd – why can’t I at least mail it in? Or even buy it after having paid so much to rent it? There’s basically no instructions on how to do any of this provided by the corporation of course.
In the end, I just negotiated my bill down and am still renting their modem. In the future I might go with Verizon because they provide the ONT free of charge (since it is proprietary with Fios) and then almost all routers work with it. At least I live in New York where there’s a lot of competition for internet providers so I have some leverage when negotiating my bill, although apparently not enough to make their customer service any better.