posted: Jun. 20, 2012 @ 4:52p
I'm just going to tell the story, hopefully it will help someone. Stop reading right now if you are not looking to buy a cable modem with internet telephone to replace your cable modem rental as the post is just way too long.
I called Comcast/Xfinity about 2 weeks ago because my Triple Play bill went up about $20 a month (I'm not ashamed to be a FATWALLETER). They told me whatever promotion I was on expired. The guy was nice enough and put it back to the same rate for another 6 months. The he was also nice enough to say that he could see I was renting a modem for internet service for $7 a month and could buy my own. I was pissed, because I had brought this up to a rep maybe 5 years ago and they told me I couldn't do this because I have internet phone. (The math being 5 years x 12 months x $7 a month =$420) He told me the modems were available at Best Buy or online. So, I go to Best Buy and ask the guy what modem is for Comcast. He directs me to a Motorola Surfboard (model no ?) Its $99 on sale. I smell a rat. I don't buy it. Instead I go home and buy a brand new one one eBay for about $55 with no tax. I open it up, and the modem doesn't have telephone jacks. Now, I guess I could take a little blame here because I took the guys word at Best Buy that that model was the Comcast model, and I did go to the Comcast website and it was on the approved modem list...but ultimately I bought the wrong modem. This paragraph is a beef about Best Buy having a dope telling me this is the Comcast modem and their price gouging.
The guy I bought it from had a no return policy so I resold it for actually a little profit on eBay. With the eBay fees and the shipping being a wash (I paid shipping, but I charged shipping) I was out like $2.
Then I go back to the Comcast approved modem list. They have one called the ARRIS 722g that looked like it was going to solve my problems, it has phone jacks on it.
I go to eBay and buy one for $95 plus shipping. I get home and call up Comcast to register it. They ask me two questions. What is the CMAC number and where did I buy it. I give them the number and tell them I bought it on eBay. They tell me they can't register it because I didn't buy it at Best Buy. The explanation that is given is that because it is a telephone modem certain E911 criteria have to be met. At this point I'm sour for multiple reasons. 1) I bought this modem online and don't know the return policy off the top of my head, and while I'm on the phone with Comcast getting the bad news, my internet is down because I have the new one attached. 2) this model number is on the Comcast approved model list 3) there are absolutely no warnings or disclaimers on the Comcast website that say this model has to be purchased at Best Buy (and there are other unrelated warnings on some of the models on the Comcast website about various bug issues) 4) I have a sinking feeling that when I get to Best Buy, I'm going to get gouged on this modem they have a monopoly on. I go up three levels of supervisors on this Comcast phone call. Each level is very good at explaining the reason why (e911 issue) that it has to be bought at Best Buy. I accept this to some point, but my issue is that it should say this on their website. According to their website (at least as of yesterday) is that this is an approved modem for a consumer to go out and purchase with no Best Buy only warning. Third supervisor credits me $25 and hopes I can return the modem and hopes the $25 will cover the shipping. Seller accepted the return but now is pissed that he has a modem that is probably worthless, as anyone that is looking to buy that specific model is probably a Comcast customer looking to avoid a rental charge.
I go to Best Buy yesterday. I go to the modem section. There is no modem with telephone jacks. Not only is there no modem with telephone jacks, there is no sticker on the shelf with a price for one. I ask an employee if he has Comcast modems with telephone jacks. He says they are in back. He brings out a red box that says Xfinity all over it and has a picture of a modem. The box says Xfinity so much I have to read the fine print to find out the maker and model of the modem. Its the one I want ARRIS 722g. Then I have to ask they guy how much it is, because there is no sticker. $149.99. And the box has a bunch of stuff in it I don't need. 2 coax cables, Ethernet cable, 10 cable clips, 2-way splitter. As I am paying, the guy that is ringing me up asks if I want the 2 year warranty for another $20 or $30 (This was yesterday and I can't remember the amount, as I always decline anyway.) I get home and open the box. The first thing I see in the instructions. "Do not return this product to your store. If you are experiencing problems with this unit or installation, please contact your cable company or call arris support)" Thanks for trying to sell me that extended warranty Best Buy. I get home plug all the stuff in and call Comcast to register it. They tell me it had to be activated at Best Buy and they can't do it over the phone.
I have my receipt with the number on it and call Best Buy and ask for the manager. The girl answering the phone wants a brief description of my problem, tells me to hold and instead of getting the manager I get the Comcast rep assigned to that store. Comcast rep tells me its not working because I need to register it with Comcast. I tell him I already called and they told me Best Buy had to register it. He tells me Best Buy can't register a modem. I proceed to tell him the story posted above (I actually started at the buying the modem online, I skipped the Motorola Modem part as it didn't pertain to him). He indicated the Best Buy employee should not have let that modem leave the store without contacting Comcast to register it but I would have to bring it back in. I expressed my displeasure (I did this civilly as I did not consider this Comcast employee to be the problem) and he took my cell number, and the CMAC and serial numbers from me over the phone and said he would work on it. About 20 minutes later I got a call back saying I wouldn't have to come back in.
With tax the modem was $161.23. It will take 23 months to recoup this at $7 a month.
Also, ultimately I call BS on the e911 issue as well. All I needed to get that modem verified was the CMAC number and my comcast account number. I had that exact information with the eBay purchased modem.