Imagine myself and another Information Technology university graduate that is an addicted to the internet. We practically live off the net; and in many cases eat because of it (ordering online and earning wages to pay for said food). Suffice to say that we are pretty familiar with how the net works – and how to install it.
This so far is definitely not the case with the local internet provider Wimd and their technicians. This is a comprehensive review of Wimd covering contract signing, installation, multiple maintenance recalls and final solutions.
Back in the day it was generally standardised for a company to inspect your property before forcing you to sign a contract and pay a hefty deposit. This was for a number of reasons:
- To determine if the service was right for you – their might be other plans more suitable (it’s often called up-selling!);
- To make sure your property would support the service (i.e. if its in the right location);
- To make sure your property had appropriate infrastructure to support the service (and if not what could be done to resolve this);
- To quote installation time and miscellaneous costs;
- And so forth…
Unfortunately, by the time I was old enough to start signing contracts this level of customer service was thrown out of the window for hands quickly grabbing your money…
My partner and I rang Wimd several times attempting to discuss how the service worked (i.e. what infrastructure was used on our end), how long it would take to get installed and so forth. Frankly they refused to deal with us, simply saying that to even get a technician to confirm it would work in our area we had to sign a contract and pay the year’s deposit! As we were getting the 8Mbps speed we had to pay 390KD (AU$1351.51) upfront just to get the company to check if we could receive the signal in our suburb!
Now as an afterthought I really should of questioned that – mostly I didn’t complain too much as everyone kept saying “its how its done in Kuwait”. I personally think it violates Wimd’s company “key tenants to success” (as they call it): to quote “Collaborative synergy- Working together always gets the job done better and faster”. Can I ask how exactly were they working with me? They merely told us to hand over the money… (Like a mugger in the back of a dark alley…)
“There is a wait of eight (8) to seven (7) days“. Apparently. This was most definitely the case for us. After signing the contract we did not hear from them once – not even a welcome or confirmation call or email! Although apparently not everyone waits for a full 8 to 7 days (I’m sorry I just can’t get over the grammar on that!) as the company’s Twitter feed had at least one person mentioning how they signed the contract and the very next day their net was installed and working. Nice! Preferential treatment to customers really makes a company look professional. Good on you Wimd!
Eight days later.
At about 3.30pm we received a phone call from an installation technician saying that he was in the area and that would be calling in on us sometime that evening soon, however was unable to give us an exact time.
Upon arrival they tell us that our antenna is too wobbly (despite receive perfect reception from it), so they install their own by drilling directly into the wall.
The First Complaint
I’m not joking. We actually had to ring the company to make an official complaint. The installation technician team claimed they may potentially need to run loose cables down the side of our house (all three stories high) and that they might have to drill through a window to a particular room. Ummm… What?! No way! Particularly when we had both satellite and ethernet ports free on the roof…
Apparently, on later explanation by the customer service representative, if there is not enough space in the current infrastructure’s pipes to enter the house, they may need to drill through a window in order to get the cables into the house. So we were left in a “state of fear” as the technicians were on the roof and we were inside, unknowing as to what was happening. Luckily our house has the appropriate infrastructure… But this really calls for the need for Wimd to do on-site analysis prior to contracts so that a proper explanation of the steps for installation can be explained (clearly in either English or Arabic appropriately).
The Second complaint
The second issue we had with the technicians was that they only wanted to install internet to one room of the house and then leave. That was definitely not part of the contract; we have signed and paid a contract with Wimd to install internet to our house (all areas of it), not just one room. Again, another call to the company to make a complaint. The company claimed you would then have to contact another team who would install a series of repeaters at an extra cost. If you already have a router infrastructure you should be ok, but if not, potentially expect more costs involved with setup. This was not mentioned prior to signing the contract.
Internet Before Wimd
Just as a comparison, our initial internet speed was approximately 1Mbps. This was tested with speedtest.net:
Internet After Wimd
The Morning After
The dreaded words – the morning after – as written in screenplays and told as stories to children. The morning after *feel the chill run down your spine*
The technicians finished their job at 9.30pm that night. We did some basic tests to confirm net was working great – i.e. used the net and a speed test – then went to bed. When we realised that the net wasn’t working, we gave another call to Wimd at 9.45am whose response was that they couldn’t find us on the customer database.
Say that again? We weren’t on the customer database? Right… Well after being told they would call us back, and again needing to ring them back, they finally said that they would have the installation team contact us.
A Day Later
We heard from the installation department when they rang to confirm whether it was a good time for them to come out. Apparently (despite all lights green on our side through testing) the fault was at our end; apparently our router wasn’t turned on… From the lights all over it, I would say it was. It worked fine with our old net connection…
Anyways, they sent out another team to fix our problem. After not really doing much the internet mysteriously decided to work. However, straight after they left again, it dropped out.
Another phone call to Wimd. Only this time they let us know that apparently their main antenna was experiencing issues and was the reason to blame for our net dropouts.
The Next Few Days
So am I enjoying the Wimd experience so far? By far, let me say F*** this! Give me back the slow but reliable net. The last few days have been absolutely terrible. The internet just keeps dropping out, often during when you need it most. Imagine writing a huge review for your blog, then pressing publish… only for the net to die and for the auto-save to fail. Nice!
About a Week Later
So about a week has passed since we signed our internet contract. Apparently, through communication with customer support, there has been a number of issues with our local tower which has been going under maintenance.
Is our net working now? Well, actually, yeah it is. It’s working pretty good.
When downloading via SABNZB we sit at a comfortable 900kbps (not bad considering we signed up for 8Mb/s, so it’s slightly higher than advertised). Torrents seem to sit closer to 700-800kbps, yet I tend to use NZBs over torrents so haven’t extensively tested this.
I am unhappy with the upload speed however; it sits constantly below 1Mb/s. Considering one of our main reasons for choosing Wimd was the great upload speed (a necessity for my job) the slow uploads don’t really impress (I was under the expectation it would be more). It’s not as slow as it could be, but I would definitely appreciate faster.
About a Month Later
How do I feel about Wimd about a month after installation? Well since the initial problems were solved, we haven’t seemed to have any further problems. We seem to sit about 800-900Kbps, which is above our actual contract speed. Not that I am complaining. If Wimd does that for all customers then they will have a long list of very happy customers.
Summary? Do I Recommend Wimd?
Ignoring the “maintenance” that we experienced just after installation, the first week or so of internet has been somewhat stable. We did sit for approximately 10 days without working internet, and we estimate that it costs us KD1.07 a day, so we lost KD10 of value (AU$34.24). Apparently this was a qualitynet issue, not actually Wimd’s fault. We still feel that we should have been compensated for this time – especially considering we were discussing during this time breaking contract (it was that bad).
For the next month, the internet has been superb – better than any other internet service provided that we have used so far. Download speeds are good – in fact a bit better than our signed contract! Upload speeds could be better, but apparently are better than most other providers.
In summary, I do recommend Wimd. In reflection, they handled issues efficiently (as one would hope) and so far long-term use of their service has been enjoyable.