User comments on ISPs
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Standard User codsallandy
(newbie) Tue 17-Jan-12 16:08:20
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Value for money.


[link to this post]
 
I am almost two years into my second spell as a Zen customer. I love the reliability of the service and on the very rare occasions that I have had a problem, the quality of the customer support offered by Zen's team. My speeds are very good and more important almost constant across the day and evening. Zen achieve this on the same phone line on which other good providers including Eclipse and IDNet haven't quite managed such consistent speeds (hence the shame-faced return to Zen in March 2010).
I do wish though that Zen would increase the monthly download usage limit on its packages.Current limits feel low compared with many ISPs offerings. I know that reliable quality and service cost money.As is so often said on this forum you get what you pay for but surely a modest increase in allowances would be most welcome and improve Value for Money while not breaking the bank at Zen.
Am I being greedy or do others agree?
Standard User AndyPandy
(experienced) Tue 17-Jan-12 16:21:41
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Re: Value for money.


[re: codsallandy] [link to this post]
 
It could be supposed that the limits themselves are responsible for the steady speeds. Removing or raising the limits would likely lead to more downloading, and variable speeds.

It could be managed with some investment by Zen, but would prices need to increase as a result?

I think the current 100Gb I get per month is sufficient for now, just my tuppence worth!

AP

ZeN 8000 Pro
Draytek Vigor 2600g -> Vigor 2710n
Down Speed Synch: 8128000
Up Speed Synch: 448000

What I get:
My Broadband Speed Test

Edited by AndyPandy (Tue 17-Jan-12 16:27:39)

Standard User therioman
(knowledge is power) Tue 24-Jan-12 19:09:39
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Re: Value for money.


[re: codsallandy] [link to this post]
 
Zen do offer a reliable service, but value for money.... hmm not anymore.

There are many reasons the pricing and caps do not make sense anymore... plenty offer just as reliable service, but give me the freedom to use my broadband as I see fit.

Oh and for less.

I think it would be hard work to justify using Zen given how difficult it would be just todo normal stuff .... all of which I would point out is legal and involves zero filesharing.


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Standard User Banger
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 24-Jan-12 19:41:20
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Re: Value for money.


[re: therioman] [link to this post]
 
Reason I moved to Vivaciti is it's cheaper, no slowdowns at peak times, I can use ADSL2+ now instead of five years time and it's as reliable as Zen.

Tim
www.vivaciti.net & freenetname
Billion 7800 on 24 Meg Variety LLU
My Broadband Speed Test
Standard User darkhorizon472
(experienced) Sat 28-Jan-12 09:21:27
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Re: Value for money.


[re: Banger] [link to this post]
 
Having used plusnet, talk talk and bt I paid the extra for an ISP with good support that just works. Yes there are cheaper than zen but for me service and performance are very important.
Standard User techguy
(committed) Sat 28-Jan-12 18:32:09
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Re: Value for money.


[re: darkhorizon472] [link to this post]
 
I can't comment on the likes of Vivaciti as I've never been a customer but I did have a brush with O2's broadband division having been a happy O2 mobile customer for a good while, unfortunately, the difference between mobile customer service and ADSL customer service was like night and day with the latter being the night, not pleasant at all.

Being a tad geeky I will tend to look for a network topology diagram on an ISP's site which indicates they own, control and develop their own network (rather than reselling wholesale services which seems to be common these days) and also in Zen's case it shows the capacity of the links and external connections which is as equally importatnt as the last mile to your home, I was impresed with what I saw, along with the fact they didn't traffic manage (I'd been with another ISP that is advertising quite heavily with a value proposition at the moment and found myself with an unusable connection, it cost me dear to buy myself out of the contract)

With Zen the connection just works in the main and when I've had any cause to call them its always been a pleasant experience even though I've had to wait quite a while to speak to someone on occasions.

Last year I wanted to see if I could get anymore speed from my line which still had an extension style socket on it from when it was converted from an extension as the BT bloke that came in 2004 to connect the new line couldn't be bothered to fit an NTE.

I'd moved the line to Zen's tlephone package to make any problem resolution easier but was fully prepared to have to pay for the socket change as it would obviously require a visit from Openreach (OR),

I had originally broached the situation on this forum and had received some help.

To my surpirse the tech support guy said that he would be specifially requesting a broadband engineer from OR so that I wouldn't be charged.

The guy came, was very pleasant, changed the socket and thoroughly tested the line, later in the day the fault tracker showed the person I'd been communicating with via TBB had checked the line and reset the profile to take advantage of the increased sync, I suspect with a good proportion of other ISPs I might have had to ring and request that.

Furthermore, when the VAT increase was pending I mailed and asked whether there was anything they could do.

We managed to come to a mutually agreeable price, again I doubt I could do that with a lot of ISPs.

I'd also argue that while you maybe able to prepurchase additional bandwifh from some ISPs, those that allow it to roll over until used are in the minority, this is what I have done.

Perdonally I'd not recommend any other ISP and don't intend on moving. while definitely not the cheapest I would say they are the best.

Virgin (ADSL) => Namesco => Newnet => O2 => Plusnet => Zen => Newnet => Zen Lite 8000
Note: I don't lay turf for anyone. astro or otherwise, all views and opinions expressed are my own based on experience.
Standard User mixt
(experienced) Sat 28-Jan-12 19:39:34
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Re: Value for money.


[re: therioman] [link to this post]
 
I tend to agree, though it does depend on your requirements. If use your connection consistently through out a month, including during peak times, they are pretty good value for money (it may seem expensive, but it's probably pitched about right, for a non-traffic shaped, BT based back haul service).

But if you're actually wanting to transfer a lot of data, I feel it's not.

With the package I'm on at AAISP (where they alter the rate at which they metre your traffic usage during the day), if I plan my downloads to be specifically during their "night-time special" hours (2am-6am), on the speed of my line (10Mb), I could transfer half a terra byte a month and only use a quarter of my allocated units. All this for a package costing £20 a month (excluding line rental). Yet, for a Zen Active package priced at £25 a month (including VAT), I would only be able to transfer 50Gb (10x less). But the downside with AA is, their peak-time is hideously expensive. In fact it could be argued that it is this way to give non-business customers (eg. me) the intensive to stay off the network between 9am and 6pm to keep it clear for business based customers. Which doesn't bother me in the slightest, as I'm normally out between these times anyway.

So I guess the point I'm trying to make is - value for money, if you're seeking raw data transfer, Zen are no where near the ball park. Better to go LLU or some alternative cheaper provider. If you're after a solid working connection, where you can do pretty much anything you want at any time of day, and you enjoy paying a premium for a non-traffic shaped service, they are brilliant. Just don't go crazy downloading the entire internet, cause you're going to eat through their 10/50/100Gb monthly limits fair rapidly if you do.

My 2p worth.

Now on <aaisp.net> (21CN)
Previous ISPs: Virgin Media (50Mb/Cable), Be* Un Limited, ZeN
Is Linux routing your internet connection?
Need to make BIND geo-aware?

Edited by mixt (Sat 28-Jan-12 19:40:51)

Standard User therioman
(knowledge is power) Mon 30-Jan-12 12:30:36
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Re: Value for money.


[re: mixt] [link to this post]
 
Or perhaps to put it another way:

If you want a service that is just as reliable as the one Zen offers using BT Backhaul, but don't want to have to micro manage your usage, be prevented from taking advantage of new services such as Netflix and other perfectly legitimate and reasonable uses of broadband...

...you'd be mad to choose Zen.

There are plenty of providers now who offer just as reliable a service as Zen, but also manage to offer:

* Better/more generous/less restrictive usage
* More available support (up to and including 24/7/365) - some issues can be 24/7!
* Lower monthly cost for service

And sometimes even:

* Inclusive Modems/Router if you want it
(which doesn't always tie you into a long contract either)

...so as much as I like Zen, there are many providers who can outshine them on every aspect. Reliability, Service, Support and Price...
Standard User Banger
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 31-Jan-12 19:58:36
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Re: Value for money.


[re: therioman] [link to this post]
 
Agreed.

Tim
www.vivaciti.net & freenetname
Billion 7800 on 24 Meg Variety LLU
My Broadband Speed Test
Standard User pwhodges
(committed) Tue 31-Jan-12 20:23:21
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Re: Value for money.


[re: Banger] [link to this post]
 
When I joined Zen about ten years ago, there were a number of other providers that were considered to be in the same bracket. Not one of them now is, and most no longer exist at all.

While the past is no guarantee of the future, I find that not feeling a need to think about the future so often suits me nicely.

Paul

Edited by pwhodges (Tue 31-Jan-12 20:23:57)

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