Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Day 819

I went to the AT&T store today to find out a little more about U-verse. I've been getting these flyers in the mail for the past several months with what look like incredibly good deals and I wanted to find out if they were really true. The $79 a month bundle price they quoted was indeed correct, but the more I learned about it, the more I wondered if anyone would really sign up for this rather limited service. You got a phone, but you were limited to a certain number of minutes a month. You got internet, but it was slower than what I have now. You got TV as well, but not very many channels. When I asked how much it would cost to get what I really needed, the price suddenly got a lot higher. Despite the bait and switch tactics, I'm still thinking of switching from Time Warner to U-verse anyway.

Why do competing companies make it so difficult to compare services these days? You always end up comparing apples to oranges and at the end of the day, you're just guessing which company is actually better. I'm convinced this is why telephone, internet, and electricity providers try so hard to get you to sign a two year contract. Without a contract, there would be nothing preventing you from just leaving when the disappointment sets in. Somehow phone companies always seem to deliver less than they promise. They never mention all the city and state taxes that are going to be added to your bill either.

I got a bid on putting in a new furnace as well today. Although the price was more reasonable than I expected, it was still pretty high and confirmed my decision to just wait until next Fall to do anything major. There are far to many expenses on the horizon these days anyway. Taxes are due in less than a month. The rent house is empty and not contributing anything to the monthly cash flow. The Defender 90 is almost due for another major service. The list never ends.

Enough complaining though. The weather seems to get a little nicer every day. I'm not wild about daylight savings time starting so early this year, but it's nice to be able to put the heavy Winter coats away for another season. Walking the dogs is a lot more enjoyable in warmer weather too. Although Dot and Dash haven't officially become photo assistants, they are both becoming better about letting me take pictures during our walks. I never really thought of myself as a nature photographer, but I'm actually starting to get some good shots.

The iCloud has turned out to be a good thing as well. I was a bit apprehensive about upgrading everything to take advantage of the Cloud, but it's certainly making my life easier. I don't have to synchronize calendars and contact lists anymore and I just noticed that my iPhone upgraded itself to the latest IOS all by itself. Now, if I could just train these devices to do my web and writing work for me.

Wyatt is today's Dalmatian of the Day

Watch of the Day


  1. I know this isn't really the point of your article, but I just wanted to let you know that I switched from Time-Warner to U-Verse a few years ago, and I love it. I use it for Internet (the highest speed they offer) and cable (pretty much all the channels), which is expensive, but I think it's worth it. My only frustrations with U-Verse are:

    * No slow-mo. This would be so easy to implement that I can't understand why they haven't done it.

    * No display on the cable box. Want to know what channel you're watching? You have to hit some remote button, like "Guide," to display it on-screen.

    * No button to return to current time. So if you've been watching from the buffer and you want to get back to the present, you just have to fast-forward. No biggie, just annoying.

    * No local weather radar and no "local weather on the 8's" on the Weather Channel. You won't miss these options until it's blowing up a storm and you want to know what's moving in.

    The lack of slow-mo is the only thing I really miss, the others are just minor annoyances. Their phone support absolutely sucks, but their technicians are great (and the first time you use one, you'll get their local # and you won't have to deal with their crappy call center, which is one of the worst I've ever had to deal with). But I've found that I experience so many fewer service problems with U-Verse than I did with TWC that the suckiness of their call center just isn't a major issue.

  2. I'm not sure how you manage to make all your expenses. You have to be getting paid more for writing things than I am! I can't support a hiking habit, let alone a house.