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HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

New Member

HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

So, my experience (brief though it was) with HughesNet Voice...

1. Hardware installation and setup was a snap.  Worked fine right out of the box.

2. Call quality was relatively poor.  It is apparent that there is a HUGE amount of compression going on, which has the effect of making all the other peoples voice sound muddled.

3. Experienced frequent call disconnects and "Can you hear me now?" moments which reminded me of the early days of cell phones.

But, despite those issues, I would have been willing to roll with it in order to realize the savings over a landline copper wire connection.  The killer, for me, was my inability to register my account at the HughesNet Voice Web Portal.  This portal is where you go to port your old phone number from your previous carrier to the Hughes telephone provider, and also to manage various features of your HughesNet Voice service.  Without access to this, you have a phone line with features that you cannot manage and control.

The issue I experienced was that the Voice Portal would not recognize my SAN as being valid and therefore I could not register for access to manage my account and port my old number.  I spent nearly 3 weeks with Hughes Advanced Technical Support trying to fix the problem.  Instead of fixing it, they made it worse by breaking other things that were previously working in my setup.  Eventually they fixed the things that they themselves broke, but were never able to resolve the original problem.  They pointed the finger at Big River Telephone, their voice provider behind the scenes.  Numerous problem tickets were submitted up the line to them and may as well have been set on fire since none of them were responded to.  Finally I gave up and cancelled the service.

I would also like to point out that my experience with the technical support was hideous.  Everyone was very nice and tried to be helpful, but everytime I would call it was like I was starting all over again.  I would repeatedly have to walk them through the problem I was having like it was the first time they were hearing about it.  Their system for taking case notes and handing off calls from one technician to the next stinks since no one seems to know what the previous people have had explained to them or done about it.  In the end, we settled into a cycled of "Call, Re-explain the problem, be told they were working on it and please call back in 2 days".  Rinse and Repeat.  After 2 weeks of that, I had had enough. 

HughesNet Voice is NOT ready for prime time, the call quality and reliability itself is in no way satisfactory for business purposes and only marginally satisfactory for home/personal use, and if you happen to be one of the unlucky ones who turns up a problem in their setup, God help you (because Technical Support certainly won't).

It's too bad really.  I liked the concept of a VOIP that was optimized for satellite use, but this experience not only turned me away from ever trying that again, but it is a huge step backwards in my overall HughesNet experience (I had been very happy with Gen4 in general) and now has me praying for the day I can just dump Hughes and get on a terrestrial system if that opportunity ever presents itself.

9 REPLIES 9
New Member

Re: HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

Addendum...  I am a very long time HN subscriber.  Been through every iteration of the system practically from the first day.  A lot of ups and downs along the way.  This particular experience is the worst I have had with them, by far.  They made a lot of positive progress with Gen4 but this Voice experience has been so bad I am having a hard time remembering those positives at the moment.  In fairness, I am not sure how much responsibility for my issue to assign to Hughes and how much more properly belongs to the voice provider behind the scenes, but it is the Hughes name on the product, so they need to take the hit for the failures of their subcontractor/provider-partner.
New Member

Re: HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

Addendum # 2...  So after I call and cancel HughesNet Voice, I get an email with instructions on returning my HN9000 radio modem to them.  WOOPS!  a) I don't even use an HN9000 (not in a while anyway and when I did it was not theirs it was mine; I still have it in fact), and b) I was not cancelling the whole service, just Voice...  So, another call to customer support...  More apologies...  The cancellation was showing properly in their system, no idea why I got an email telling me to return the modem (although I admit I was tempted to anyway)...  All is well.  If the lights are still on on the front of my modem in a few days, I will believe that...  Why do I have a sinking feeling I am going to be losing my service sometime in the next week anway... 
New Member

Re: HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

... and an extra word aimed specifically to the HughesNet folks...  Once upon a time I worked for you guys in El Segundo.  There is a little bit of me in those satellites.  Here's the real problem (not just with the Voice service incarnation but HughesNet in general).  You folks are a group of extremely talented very fine engineers saddled with a layer of breathtakingly incompetent bureaucracy and management.  It doesn't matter how elegant the design or sexy the hardware is if the end-user experience stinks.  Good intentions are fine, but the bottom line is the results.  Every support tech I dealt with was courteous, professional, and attentive.  But it isn't the words they speak that matters, or their attitude, it is the results.  And the result in my case was no joy.

Now, I recognize full well all the unique challenges to a satellite-based system and the relatively limited target audience you are competing for.  And the assets in space (and the ground support infrastructure) are very expensive.  This makes it difficult to turn a decent profit.  That was always the Achilles heel of the concept.  But you have to recognize in turn that your customers are basing their experience with you in comparison to their experience with terrestrial systems that are turnkey, operate flawlessly, and don't have the kind of bandwidth and other limitations that you do.  It makes them a tough audience to satisfy.  As I noted before you made a lot of very fine progress with the Gen4 rollout, but if my experience with the Voice service is in any way typical, then you need to spend more effort getting it right because it will wind up hurting your core business.  Remember the old saw "Penny wise and pound foolish"?  It applies here.

New Member

Re: HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

Nope, no connection problems at all.  I didn't even have any problems with the ATA or Voice service per se during my short experience with it, aside from the call quality issues I noted.  My problems in this case were purely with the back-end of the system, trying (without success) to access the Voice Web Portal for managing the account.  That problem was never fixed.  Tier 4 support said it looked like an issue at Big River, but they (BR) did squat about it over a period of two weeks despite numerous tickets being sent up the line to their IT department.  Not my concern now since I cancelled, but someone else will (or already has) experience the issue again.  Hope they have a better result than I did.
Highlighted
New Member

Re: HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

IMO. VoIP service over satellite is not a good thing, Latency will always be a issue.Not only that but it is using needed satellite bandwidth which is already being stretched to its limit anyway with overcrowded gateways
Bo
New Member

Re: HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

I started my service Nov. 12, 2014, and the system is exactly as bad as Patrick has said it is. I plan to cancel the service.
Alum

Re: HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

Bo,

Thanks for the reply and welcome to the community!
We would gladly help you here, if you allow us to do so! Have you attempted trouble shooting with customer service? 

The best way to get service is start your own post on the community! We have community members here that are willing to help you as well!

Please post one of the following -  a recent case number, full name of the account holder, or serial number of your modem so that we may take a look into your system?

- Warren
New Member

Re: HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

Thanks for your information.  The last thing I want to deal with is more frustration and that would have sent me over the top.  I was considering it, I wish that we had the bandwidth or the speed because for the normal comcast user is able to use MagicJack which I have used for years and it is fantastic.  I have to give cuddos to Hughes compared to Wildblue.  They(WB) have a faster and quicker response time and actually able to use skype and magic jack but they do not have the amount of gb that is needed in todays world for bandwidth.  Even with the highest package we would have to watch carefully what we did online.  I hated that feeling.  We ended up last month having about 20 extra gig to disappear at the end of the month, I wish they had rollover but that is fine.  I enjoy the fact that I don't lay in bed at night thinking I might go over and have to pay another $10 dollars for a gig of data.  Hughes net has been a real great change for us even though times there are stalls in speed most of the time it is super fast so we appreciate it.  Actually cheaper than what we were paying for 15 gig now we get 50. Thanks Hughes
Moderator
Moderator

Re: HughesNet Voice Nightmare - Run away from it as fast as you can

Hey Ronnie, thanks! If you ever need any assistance with your HughesNet service, don't be a stranger and start a new post here in the community. We're more than happy to help.

Enjoy the weekend!

-Liz

Thanks,
Liz

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