August 21, 2018
Below is the original email I had sent to Hughesnet requesting they cancel my service and waive the termination fee.
Since that time, I’ve spoken to three representatives, Sal Ruiz, Carlos Silver and JR Mendez.
Let me say that all three were very polite and I believe they genuinely wanted to help. However, for whatever reason, they were unable to do so. Even though Sal Ruiz told me that if the problem couldn’t be solved, then my contract would be updated and the termination fee waived. Sal also told me that I would be getting a call from technical support on Friday between 530 and 6 pm on August 17th. I waited all night, as you are a 24/7 support service, but never received a call. Neither did I receive a call on Saturday or Sunday.
The girl I had spoken to previously hung up on me when she was consulting with technical support. I think they knew at that time my problem couldn’t be fixed. And I only say that now because of the treatment and false information I’ve been given, and what I’ve now learned.
I called Hughesnet on Monday and spoke to JR Mendez. After discussing my situation with buffering and the picture going black and freezing, he told me that Hughesnet in fact isn’t compatible with how I intended on using it. That is, we stream using Sling TV.
My intentions for this service out of the starting gate was to use it for streaming Sling TV. I told the customer service rep that and I told the technician that. No one ever told me that it wouldn’t work. If I had known, then I wouldn’t have opted for the service.
Between my wife and I, we have over 3 hours logged in phone calls, and that doesn’t count chat, email and this letter. We both requested a service tech to show up and try to solve the problem. No tech. After yesterdays call of 1 hour and 38 minutes, I honestly believe that Hughesnet is fully aware that they cannot provide the service they promised to my house.
JR Mendez offered me internet only at a reduced price and I thought about it for a minute and briefly ran it by my wife who I called in from outside. She reminded me that we are living on a fixed income as we are both retiring and filing for social security and leaving our jobs in a week.
When I told them I wanted to cancel, things got ugly. I told JR Mendez as I have told other reps, that I would be willing to compromise and pay for the tech’s time to be fair to both Hughesnet and myself. Bear in mind, I’ve never been able to watch a show from start to finish in the 6 weeks I’ve had this service. JR Mendez put me on hold while he talked to the engineer’s about waiving my fee. When he returned to my call, he told me they would not waive the fee because I had used up all my data and am only calling them now because my data was gone. He said they told him that I had been using this and it’s not enough. It’s a subtle way of them telling me I’m trying to get something for nothing. Something for nothing means I’d be paying Hughesnet $493.58 for a service I was suppose to have for 6 weeks, but never did.
That’s when I became a little unglued. You see, we bought my parents house 35 miles away from where we now live on July 20th. We sold the house we were living in on July 24th. We signed up for Hughesnet on July 6th. My daughter, who lives an hour away, is going through a divorce and has a 2 and 4 year old. My father had his foot amputated on August 3rd. Now tell me, good sir or madam, how in the world am I watching that much TV in that short period of time when I and my wife are working, moving, babysitting and making hospital visits? Really, tell me how we’re doing that?
We were given a free extra month on Friday afternoon, August 17th, that’s 20gig. Sunday morning, August 19th, we had used up 44% of that. That’s odd, I spent all day Saturday working on my shop and my wife was gone shopping until 1pm, came home and cleaned the rest of the day. Send a tech please, 44%, really?
If the technical problems had stopped when my data reset then I would think a little differently, but it didn’t. I’ve come to learn after all of this, that if you don’t physically unplug all your devices when you are not using them, then it uses up your data, even though you are not watching TV or online. Again, out of the starting gate, no one told me that. And the buffering doesn’t stop, nor does the screen going blank and freezing. It's textbook misrepresentation.
So, my conclusion to Hughesnet is to cancel my contract and waive my termination fee. Like I told your service rep’s, I believe in being fair, but that includes me, I will compromise and pay for the installation tech’s time, but who is going to pay for mine?
I sincerely hope this can be resolved in a manner that is fair and reasonable to both of us.
Case #’s 114705634 114642697 114611090
August 17, 2018
To whom it may concern,
I am writing you regarding my account, number DSS36486805 with Hughes Net.
We signed up on July 6, 2018 while in the process of buying my father’s house. He had fallen off the roof and ended up having his foot amputated. During that time, we were busy moving and such and getting our affairs in order.
I signed on with Hughes Net primarily because you were the only company that provided service on our street. I am 62 and my wife is 61. We do not watch a lot of TV neither do we use our computers very much, rather, we have a Roku and an Amazon Firestick, and we stream. Most of what we do in that area can be done on my job or on our phones.
Prior to signing on with your company, I went to your site accessed through the Dish Network site, and after going through our usage intent, I opted for the $69.99 special. There were discounts included and so on and so forth, and our first monthly bill, with taxes, came to $71.79, to date I’ve paid $93.58.
When the technician came to our house and set up our equipment, he told me that for the first couple of days we would experience some buffering until the satellite locked on to our location. After the satellite locked on to our location, we would have normal service.
We’ve had Hughes Net for over a month and to this day, I have yet to be able to watch any show from start to finish without losing my signal. Last week my wife called and was told that her Kindle, which she uses for a total of 30 minutes every morning, was using 50% of our data. Sounds preposterous to me, but that’s what she was told, in addition, our data was also being used by our Firestick, Roku player and phones even when they are turned off.
The customer service representative did something during that phone call to make our signal come in, and it did, then she told my wife our data was all used up for the month and we would have to either upgrade or buy tokens or wait until the next billing cycle starts and we get more data. She was shocked, and I didn’t believe it what I was hearing.
After we learned of this, we decided that we would turn off every device we weren’t using to see if it made a difference. Unfortunately, it didn’t. Since we’ve had this service we are still unable to watch any show without the signal dropping out, even at the beginning of the new billing cycle when we have a full month of data available. We have tried to resolve our issue and feel like we are paying for a service we can’t use.
Yesterday, August 16th, I chatted with one of your representatives and they set up a time for your technical support people to call me. And they did. Once again, I was told our data was all used up, and after only 9 days into the billing cycle. The tech added a 1gig token, whatever that is, to try and troubleshoot the problem, however, it didn’t make a difference. The signal kept dropping out. She told me she was going to consult with someone on the technical team and put me on hold. We talked for over a half hour until she hung up on me. I tried to call her back 3 times to no avail.
It may be that your system just can’t deliver to our address, I don’t know. Nonetheless, we have decided to cancel our service and are requesting a waiver of the termination fee. In all fairness to the both of us, I will agree to compensate the technician for his set up fee and will return the equipment.
Not sure why Hughesnet would need to cancel the contract out for you...
Sling TV has stated on their website the following.
What internet speed do I need to stream Sling TV?
If your internet service provider (ISP) has a cap on your data, it's a good idea to keep an eye on your usage while streaming.
Hughesnet states that they offer speeds that are UPTO 25Mbps, and in the contract it states that speeds are not guaranteed. It is unlikely you will see consistent speeds of 25Mbps or more for the entire duration of a show during prime-time hours for your beam, which is when you most likely will be wanting to use the device.
Add on, that at 25Mbps (if you could sustain that) will consume approximately 10GB per hour, which would wipe your data out, fast.
Also, devices that are "off" aren't always off, usually they are in a sleep state, which can still allow them to access the internet and download data. Sometimes devices like a Satellite TV Box can consume several gigabytes of data in a day, enough to deplete your data allowance in hours. I imagine a SlingTV box could easily do the same, I know my ChromeCast can consume about 50MB/hour doing absolutely nothing other than sitting there.
Thanks for the response.
I believe this should have been explained to us.
I believe this should have been explained to us.
Best bet is to have your sales (and possibly support) call(s) reviewed, as it seems they might be still available.
I've contacted executive customer care.
Sal Ruiz, a rep, told me that they would modify my contract and waive the fee if a solution couldn't be reached.
JR Mendez and I tried on Monday to get it right, and it didn't work. Something about the latency... Couldn't get the 500mbs or whatever they needed to get it to work right. After some period of time, whether it's 2 minutes or 10, it constantly buffers, freezes or the screen goes blank.
JR Mendez that was the first rep to tell me HughesNet wasn't compatible with streaming Sling. So what's the point in having HughesNet if we can't use it the way we intended. I wish someone had informed me before we signed on.
And that's what I told JR. The fair and right thing to do is to cancel the contract and waive the termination fee. I even offered to pay for the service tech's time.
I'm not sure exactly how Sling works, but I assume there's a download side and an upload side, since I think there's an option to remotely watch your DVR, etc.
Right off the bat, I wouldn't expect that remote part to work very well since uploading is limited to top out at 3 or 4 Mbps. Plus, the sheer data required to upload HD programming would be prohibitive given any plan available. Also, depending upon how it talks to the Sling box, it's behind HughesNet's double-natted system so there is no way to access the box's IP address outside of HughesNet without some intermediary proxy/cloud provided by Sling. Inside a home network might be something completely diffferent as it might just need the modem's subnet to go between different receivers in the house and not require external internet at all - thinking kind of like what DirecTV's Whole Home DVR might try to do.
As was alluded by @C0RR0SIVE, the download side of things are kind of restrictive as well. Although it will generally work for the occasional videos, satellite internet is not really conducive to being a full-time replacement for television:
a) It can use a ton of data depending upon the resolutions you use and the plans are restricted. HD movies are 3-5GB/hr, so a 30GB plan isn't going to give you much more than 3 x 2-hr movies before you run out of plan data.
b) Depends on the protocol used, but some streaming services use a lot of server resources just by constant, prolonged pinging, which coupled with lag times over 500mS can cause a server to just sit and spin on pings alone, given any kind of additional upstream network delays (like that never happens).
c) If you think about a standard MTU frame size is 1500 there's not a lot of room before things start timing out and buffering, especially if the upstream provider's routing table is hosed.
d) This affects you directly as well as everyone else trying to use the same gateway server, I might add. So the potential for the problem to compound itself exponentially is immense.
I'd say the number one complaint in Tech Support area are people complaining about not being able to stream at the level they want. Granted, that's subjective, but the majority also think the medium is as transparent as it is for a terrestrial service and dont care beyond what they preceive to be what they expected.
Regarding the buffering, have you tried snoozing, or turning off, the Video Data Saver?
The downside is higher data usage. Snoozing the VDS, or turning it off, will most likely cause data to be used at a higher rate while streaming if the streamed content is, in fact, in a higher definition than it was prior to the VDS change.
Hello Robandlaurie, I appreciate you reaching out to us on the community. I pulled up your account and saw notation that you called in and had cancelled your services. In the notation, it states the agent went over the Early Termination Fees (ETF) with you and that you initially declined. However, they reiterated the fact your ETF charges are valid, and you agreed to it during the call. Because of this, we can not undo the charges.
Upon looking further into your account on other occasions, our agents were attempting to troubleshoot with you, but you were not home at the time and were advised to call back so they could continue to work with you. I did not find notation of any troubleshooting done, instead the cancellation was processed.
When we aren't given an opportunity to troubleshoot the issue and address your concerns, we can't work towards providing the service you signed up for.
I wish you the best of luck with your next ISP.