I have been using Comcast Business Class internet for going on two years now at my home office and am quite pleased with the service. Up until now, I have been paying a flat $59.95 per month for internet that is usually quite fast and has been very reliable. It has been even more gratifying that my past bills have never had a tax line item.
One thing that has always annoyed me about Business Class is that Comcast provides an SMC “gateway” device that essentially forces double-NAT, even if you just want a modem. There is no true bridge mode with the SMC device. A few months ago, I did some research and settled on a Zoom 5341 DOCSIS3 modem from Comcast’s approved modems list, but never go the chance to swap it in.
Fast forward to today: I received my latest Comcast bill and an “equipment charge” of $7.00 plus $0.42 in tax has shown up on my bill. Suspecting that I already knew what was behind the 12% increase in my bill, I called customer support and verified that indeed, I am now being billed for a leased modem. Apparently, Comcast just increased prices for some services and audited accounts; they are now charging me for the modem I have been using for almost two years.
No big deal, I will just swap in the modem I bought months ago, I thought. Since I do not have a static IP (requires the SMC gateway) or digital voice, I just need a modem and this swap should be easy.
After 45 minutes with tech support and speaking with a supervisor, it is confirmed that Comcast Business Class will not allow a business subscriber to “bring your own device” (a.k.a. BYOD) because they quote “can’t support it”; the only exception is the Motorola SurfBoard 6120 and it is said to be semi-supported, whatever that means. Nevermind the fact that I am an I.T. engineer and can support my own connection, thanks. Or that Comcast Residential has an extensive list of devices that you can use with the service, which happens to included my device. Or that I know and agree that “unsupported” means I will pay a service charge if I can’t figure out how to plug in the device I provided and get an internet connection.
Let’s get real, there is no technical difference between Residential and Business Class service and this is all semantics.
Thanks for being a hard-ass Comcast; you have once against reaffirmed the terrible customer service reputation that everyone associates with the name “Comcast”.