WARNING: Cross Carriage Issues Will Not Work For LIVE TV After Re-contract To "NEW HOMEHUB PLUS" Plan
I've been a StarHub customer my entire adult life and even before I could get a subscription of my own.
I don't watch TV services anymore; I chose to re-contract my TV services because my father enjoyed Sports Channels (though again, more channels are being removed by the year)
Despite StarHub not getting BPL natively, I chose to cross carriage BPL services over so my father could have 1 place to access all his
Sadly, the latest incident with my cross carriage channels after my HomeHub re-contract has caused me to re-think my entire relationship with StarHub. Here's a rough timeline of the events that have occurred so far.
Like all regular customers, I requested for a sales callback regarding my HomeHub services on 21 August 2021 via Facebook Messenger.
23 August 2021: The callback request was returned and I spoke with Saroja (a sales consultant) - who assisted me very satisfactorily at that time - to process my re-contract in full. She mentioned that free-to-air channels were not supported on the new set top box and I had to download an app to watch it on. Since it was an android box, I was ok with that.
28 August 2021: The re-contract happened and I set up the Android Box correctly to connect to my TV. The Android Box has a LAN Port so I simply connected the cable to my Linksys router. However, when my father tried to access cross carriage channels for BPL within the same hour via Live TV, he was not able to.
I have the privilege of being aware that sometimes, backend settings take time to be reflected after a re-contract and I told him to try again in a few hours. When the next attempt failed around 2000hrs, I made a call to 1633 detailing my cross carriage via Live TV issues in a 26 min 15 sec call (as recorded on my phone). The agent's attempts to troubleshoot the issue with me failed and we repeatedly walked through the steps to attempt accessing the cross carriage channels multiple times via Live TV. So they promised to escalate the issue for checking and get back to me.
30 August 2021: There was no callback after 2 days so I sent Facebook PM chaser. The agent who called back at around 1331hrs confirmed they were still looking into it.
31 August 2021: There was a second callback to arrange an appointment for a HubTrooper to visit my home.
1 September 2021: The HubTrooper came, watched me live demo how I couldn't access cross carriage channels on the set top box. His service was impeccable - because he not only tried his best to assist me, he also confirmed that Linksys Velop MX4200 WiFi 6 Mesh System router (which StarHub is also selling with their promotions at https://www.starhub.com/personal/broadband/routers/smart-wifi-pro.html) was not compatible with the new set top box I was issued.
He tried his best and even made a U-turn after he left to come back to try a update he was told might work. It didn't and he assured me he escalated the issue properly for callback.
3 September 2021: I missed a callback at 1113hrs so I called the hotline back. The first call I made to 1633 at 1218hrs dropped. I have no idea why but I'm not going pursue it. The second call I made at 1233hrs only fuelled the rage. So I called again for my cross carriage issues. Surprise, surprise. I was told that the previous agent escalated for free-to-air channel issues instead. I rejected the update and told them to re-escalate based on my cross carriage issues.
4 September 2021: Having lost faith in their escalation, I sent a Facebook PM chaser requesting for my callback to be handled by specifically team lead or manager. I was contacted the same but call was from regular agent. After he started going into free-to-air channels again, I stopped him right there and told him my concerns were regarding my inability to access cross carriage channels. Apparently he doesn't understand the difference and insisted on feeding me the update for free-to-air channels.
If I recall correctly, this was also the call where the agent insisted on going through with the script he was given even after being told he was advising me on the wrong concern. He was also the one who hinted that SingTel may be the cause of the issues I'm experiencing and only backed off after I told him I did not experience this with the old set top box.
6 September 2021: Having received no calls for the last 2 days, I sent a new Facebook PM chaser. There were 2 missed callbacks at 1715hrs and 1717hrs. I'm pretty sure callback protocol within the same day dictates different times and not twice consecutively.
7 September 2021: Since I waited and did not receive any calls following the missed calls, I sent a new Facebook PM chaser and finally had my first contact with the supposed Duty Manager (DM) from the follow up team at 1931hrs. It was a relatively short call of about 6 mins where he did not try to push an answer I don't need about free-to-air channels down my throat and acknowledge they were still checking on the concerns.
8 September 2021: Received 2nd Callback contact with DM of follow up team. So he called me back to tell me it was a backend issue when the services are not compatible with the router I am using (which incidentally, is the Linksys Velop MX4200 WiFi 6 Mesh System router) that they are currently bundling with their promotions at https://www.starhub.com/personal/broadband/routers/smart-wifi-pro.html.
Interesting, isn't it? They are pushing the migration of a set top box which doesn't work with a new router that they are pushing out with their promotions. And their supposed solution is to ask me to switch back to old routers (which I have already discarded) - so naturally this will be at my own cost - so I can watch the services I already paid for and re-contracted with them for.
The other solution was to wait for a firmware update (which has already been delayed once) that is "estimated" to go out on 17 September 2021. I replied that it was not acceptable.
When I asked for the old set top box back, I had a non-reply - it will take them 10 to 14 working days just to get approval to "grant" me the access of being able to use the old set top box. Even better, it will take even more days to get provisioning done (on a system they own) back to the old set top box. So this call was a waste of my time too.
9 September 2021: The DM called back again - and surprise surprise - had no solution outside of asking me to (again) at my own cost to switch back to supported routers or wait for a firmware update (which has already been delayed once) that is "estimated" to go out on 17 September 2021. When asked if that was guaranteed, he was unable to confirm - naturally. What he could do is waive subscription. Apparently, inconveniences like the experience of live matches can just go away if you just waive subscription charges of an affected customer, right?
For a company selling "experiences" and the "convenience" of accessing live programs via their new shiny Android set top box (oh look, you get Netflix and Disney+ so easily), I strongly beg to disagree.
My opinions are my own and I am not employed or affiliated to StarHub in any way outside of my home and mobile plan subscriptions.