Et tu, Starhub?!?!

Ok, so because Singtel refused to honour their advertised special (free modem/router) I switched everything to Starhub. Maybe I should have changed to M1

It seems Starhub likes to play the “old switcheroo”. As seen in the photo, the advertised package has fibre tv.


So the technician comes over today (Sept. 6, 2015) and tries to install the exact same cable tv box as the one I’m already using. So I asked why. The response was that my plan is cable tv, I have to specifically declare that I want fibre tv and that sales didn’t explain it to me.

Wait, what?! Seriously? Explain what? The “plan” is on a friggin’ flyer for cryin’ out loud. What’s to explain?!

So I call customer service and they basically said the same thing except in a condescending, “I know I’m right, so just take it” kinda attitude. So I got more mad and was rude and abrupt and got put on hold for what seemed like 30 minutes but probably only about 15. So he asked for my particulars and said a person from Sales will call me within 48 hours to solve the problem. Somehow it didn’t sit right with me so I went to the customer service centre where I signed up for the plan.

I was told the same thing, the plan’s sales rep didn’t tell you, explain to you blah blah. So I asked why call it a fibre plan and put fibre tv on the flyer? They’ve never once answered that. Instead kept shifting “blame” to Sales.Then they said they can’t do anything until my “order” is completed and it usually takes a week to close. Then they can reschedule another technician to install the fibre tv box. I’m getting pissed and I guess it showed so he muttered something to the effect that he will schedule it, then recanted and went to find the original sales guy.  He came back and said the guy was unavailable and would call me back regarding rescheduling. What kinda lame crap is this?!

The original “sales person” contact me at around 8:00 pm to tell me that it was a miscommunication between us, that he apologizes and that he was talking about cable tv when we were discussing plans. Still trying to put the blame on me for not falling for their “bait and switch”. He promises to call me back tomorrow with a reschedule date. We’ll see….

As I’m reflecting on the day, I’m wondering why 2 employee’s of Starhub would discourage me from getting fibre tv by saying “in the event something happens to the fibre, then I lose both tv and internet.” Why would they say that? Why would Starhub advertise, in print, fibre tv in a bundle package and (up to this point) renege on the deal?

Something doesn’t seem right….we’ll see…

So I got a call from the sales rep (the same guy that signed me up with the plan) today (24 hours later). I was hoping for a resolution but no. Here’s what went down aside from being informed that they call fibre tv “IP TV”.

He informed me that I should keep the cable because the serial number of the set top box I refused to let them install is already entered into the system and he and his technician recommends it on the basis of:

  1. Fibre tv and cable tv has the same quality
  2. The tv must be within 5m of the fibre point or else I will be charged extra because they will need to install a new fibre point.
  3. Cable is more convenient because if I wanted to watch tv in another room I can just move the set top box. Not so with fibre tv.
  4. Fibre tv is connected with the fibre internet, so if 1 goes down, so does the other.
  5. Switching plans to fibre tv will disconnect my internet.
  6. There is a limitation difference on the number of set top boxes / connection points for fibre tv vs cable tv which makes cable tv better. There was a whole explanation on this but it didn’t make sense to me).

This just doesn’t make sense. If i wanted to watch tv in any other room I would still need a connection point (jack), right? Speaking so frequently of “if one goes down, then I lose the other too” is making me doubt the reliability of their service, are they really that bad? When I questioned the reluctance to fix the problem, he just told me the feedback of fibre tv customers indicate that cable is better. When asked how long my internet will be interuppted, no answer, twice. When asked when the technician will fix the problem, he didn’t know and spoke of a plan change. The call ended with no resolution whatsoever.

I’m still waiting for a call with the appointment date for the technician to install my fibre tv. As I’m still within the 48 hours resolution time frame I got yesterday, I won’t raise a ruckus yet.


OK. so 48 hours have come and gone, I emailed their customer service (Sept. 9, 2015) regarding my situation and requested an email with details regarding if they are billing me for tv and when the technician will come.


I got a call from the sales rep (Sept. 12, 2015) with the exact same bullshit as before…system this system that. Still no info whatsoever. I did get a somewhat tentative, “…give you a call Monday with scheduling details.”


It is now Tuesday afternoon (Sept. 15, 2015) still nothing. Let’s see what kinda trees I can rustle…


Finally, they sent out a guy to “install” fibre tv (Sept. 21, 2015). Basically, just plugging in the set top box to the tv, power outlet and modem/router. Not as sophisticated as what they make it out to be. So prior to this install, I received the bill in which they charged a full months use. When I called to inquire, they said that their billing cycle is such that they first bill is a “deposit” which will be refunded when the plan is finished. For some reason that seems kinda sketchy to me. But what else can i do, eh?!

Only 7 days more of Singtel, I’ll have to suffer

So my contracts have all finally expired and I have put in the calls, performed the necessary steps to cancel everything. I wanted to keep my phone numbers so I had then “ported” over to my new phone and internet carrier, Starhub. I chose Starhub because I re contracted the tv to a fibre optics plan and tacked everything onto that.

Starhub, by the way has a “go green” thing going on. The lobby of the shop I went to was paperless, they had a equipment recycle bin and go green signage. AWESOME.

Anyways, the porting process, when successful cancels the previous carriers account. So make sure your contract is expired. To cancel the home broadband (with included mobile broadband) you have to call Singtel. Here’s Singtel’s contact page. TAKE NOTE: if you’re looking to time things perfectly, Singtel will charge you $40 (what kind of bullshit is that?!?!?!) if you want your home broadband service immediately terminated. No charge if you wait 7 days (maybe so they can charge you one last month’s plan price? I wouldn’t be surprised). For mobile broadband, I was told the wait is 3 days. So time it right, good people, don’t give them any room to take any more of your hard earned money.

YAY for me! I’ll be free of Singtel and their predatory practices forever!!!!!!! If you wanna read about the issues I had with Singtel, it’s HERE and HERE.

Oh, the Singtel Rep asked me why I was cancelling, haha, I gave her a brief summary. She was indifferent until the part I told her that as a family we are all cancelling Singtel. In which she replied in a shocked tone, “oh, even the home line?” I said yes. After that, she couldn’t wait to get me off the phone, haha. Maybe  that gets them where it hurts. All that infrastructure of telephone lines they have to support with dwindling usage as the push to fibre optics increases.

Singnet…What the…?!?!?!

So I get a call from a rep from Singnet (my internet service provider) and they said my contract is done in 3 months, would I like to renew. I said no. They asked why so I told him to review the calls previously in which I called to complain why I didn’t receive the free modem/router as advertised when I renewed last year. So he said, would you renew if I gave you the modem/router now? I laughed and asked him why I should take his word for it when it was in print that I get the modem/router free but didn’t. Then a couple days later, my mobile internet usage warning sounds…in the 2 plus years of having modem internet I’ve NEVER had the warning go off and I have it set 1 gb below the max.

Since the day I got off the plane 8 years ago til now, the decline in service and social responsibility is staggering ! Here’s some more examples (summarized):

1) I called customer service asking if was being blocked. Fineartamerica is a print on demand site where artists upload their works of art for sale. They asked me to check a whole buncha settings in my computer, I told them I already did and that only their service cannot access the site. They then told me they needed access to my computer to figure out the problem, I said no. He said ok, I need you to follow these steps and then proceeded to get me to open a remote assistance session. Unbelievable! So I told him that’s not gonna happen and that I wouldn’t need any more “help” from him. I contacted and they said they think they are censored by Singent because some of the artwork has nudity….oh well. Go have a look at the site if you can and decide if censorship is warranted or not.

2) Up until last year, I had refused to connect mobile internet to my phone and was perfectly happy until I got my daughter a phone and connected it to my plan. Low and behold she managed to rack up almost $4000 in mobile internet usage. I went and asked why there was internet charges when my plan doesn’t come with internet. They said my phone was internet capable so I can access the internet. I told them if I wanted internet on my phone, I would have chosen one with discounted (free) usage. They said too bad. The only thing they can do is let me choose a data plan and apply the minutes so I would only be charge the max for going over my data usage limit. That price came up to almost $300.

3) I had set up a home network for someone years ago (prior to coming to singapore, I was an IT/Systems administrator). Then recently the router/modem broke and Singtel went to replace it. I got a call from the technician asking my what the password is. I asked him password for what and he said for the internet. I kinda laughed and asked him to clarify and he said I changed the default password cuz he tried the default password and it didn’t work and if I didn’t give him the password he’ll have to call his office for them to reset the account. So I asked him again what password is he asking for he said the account password. So I quite rudely told him it was impossible for him to know that the account password had been changed and that there was no way there would be a default password for customer accounts. Right? He kept quiet, so I asked him again, what it was that he was trying to do, he said configure the internet. I chuckled and asked if he plugged the box in and he was trying to access the box so that it would connect to singnet’s servers, he said yes, so I told him the login and password he needs is for the modem/router not the customer’s account. He kept quiet again and I told him that if the default credentials don’t work then the unit is a used one and he needs to either hard reset it or get a new one. So he asked me if I knew what the password to the account was and I said yes but I’m not telling you. He hung up. I got a call 15 min. later saying after hanging up, the guy got it working and just left.

4) Also highlight videos from (professional ice hockey) don’t work either but they work on mobile. Can you guess why?

So I’m done with them. Your choice is up to you.

Bullied by Singtel

Puts up this advertisement:

Even though it’s not explicitly stated (anywhere, not even in the T&C link), if you re-contract your service, you will not be getting the “FREE wireless integrated modem.” If I had known that, I would’ve let my contract expire first.

After complaining about it, I was informed that they passed a note to the relevant department to change the wording. Isn’t that an admission to “guilt”?! Still didn’t get my modem tho. Instead I have the customer service agent’s word that my current modem will be replaced if it’s faulty for the duration of my new contract AND a “gentle” reminder that this new contract is already in effect….sigh…24 months to go.

Update: I have since opened the USB dongle and surprise, surprise there’s no sim chip! I even asked the guy if the sim chip inside the dongle was the one I need to put into the tablet and he said yes.

Morale of the story! If you want all the freebies from singtel, DONT RENEW YOUR CONTRACT, even if the web page states you get it.