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Shaw Internet Upgrades

Posted by Bruce Campbell 
Shaw Internet Upgrades
December 02, 2011 04:04PM
Has anyone else with an existing wireless network tried to upgrade to Shaw’s 50Mbps service?

It’s totally humped my existing Wireless LAN!

Shaw only supply a Cisco wireless router & modem with this new service, which they are pushing really hard to get people to take up.

Tim came around on Tuesday afternoon with the new cable modem, while I was in town.

When I got home, I tried to get the Shaw router configured to act like the old cable modem which Tim had taken away. After 12 hours of dicking around, including almost three hours on the phone with Shaw Internet support, I was told that the problem was mine, and that they couldn’t help me.

Digesting this, I questioned the logic, as the only thing that has changed is their equipment, not mine. I told them to cancel the upgrade and give me back my old modem, which was working fine, good and stable. I was then told that it would take a week!!!!!! on their scheduling system before someone (Tim, right? Nobody else on this island does Internet installs for Shaw) could come around and swap the old modem for the new one, and take away the POS.

My analysis of this is that Shaw (and Telus) are trying to muscle in on people’s home LANs, as a “convenience”. Naturally that convenience will ultimately come with a higher price tag than I pay now.

After laughing sarcastically at the inevitable “Is there thing else I can help you with?” scripted BS, I told the Shaw meat robot that I would arrange an informal handover with Tim, but of course I don’t know his last name, or how to get in touch, other than wandering the island looking for him. No LAN-based internet access for two days now.

If Teksavvy could serve Bowen, I’d be switching immediately.

If someone could send me Tim’s cell number, or if you’re reading this Tim, please reply.



Bruce Campbell
C: 604•715•0671

“Financial Instruments that are sufficiently advanced are indistinguishable from fraud."
Re: Shaw Internet Upgrades
December 02, 2011 04:16PM
I thought this was going to be about the infuriating ad I saw on TV last night. The one where a guy who just signed up with Shaw for various services (internet, cable tv and another - might have been a phone?) gets $100 back for each service. Sucks to have already signed up for Shaw, huh?

What you've described sucketh as well, Bruce. Bah.

Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people. -- Eleanor Roosevelt
Re: Shaw Internet Upgrades
December 03, 2011 08:01AM
You can always connect your own router/wifi behind the Shaw box - a Linksys WRT54G is about $30

Were you able to measure the speed you actually got?
Unless Shaw have run a lot of fiber to Bowen I don't know how many simultaneous 50Mbps customers they will be able to support
Re: Shaw Internet Upgrades
December 03, 2011 07:14PM
Martin, the cable modem that was swapped on Tuesday worked fine, for years.

In what I can only presume to be a move to take over the customer's interior LAN, then charge those customers more money for something they probably had anyway, Shaw have offered this new Broadband Internet 50 offering, which cannot (or so they say) be accessed with the old modem.

The web-page package (because it's not the same package, presumably) doesn't say anything about "Cisco 4-port ethernet and WiFi router AND cable modem, that will not be compatible with any of your existing network equipment" it just says "Shaw WiFi Modem". It also doesn't say "If for any reason this Shaw-provided WiFi modem conflicts with your existing and perfectly running network, then we are not responsible for the failure, and you'll have to get a new network." But that's the guts of what I was told on the phone by Tech Support Meat Robot.

Shaw's advertising online doesn't include the package I was pushed into upgrading, which included a digital set top box for cable TV. I told the sales robot that we didn't need the TV box, didn't want the box, and will never be getting cable TV ever again. She said that it came with the package, or it wasn't available as a package. I told her that I simply wouldn't hook it up, as don't even have a television set. I then inquired about the amount of time this reduced fee service would last before they hiked the price. She snippily said "There's no contract, so you can cancel at any time!" Right. And how many people remember to do that at the end of the six months or a year, especially after they have probably got used to the "free" services they never had before.

This is how it works. We have so very little choice with our telecommunications & media in this country, which means they can get away with treating their customers like so much beef on the hoof. Want to make customer service actually matter in Canadian Telecommunications & Media? Lose your existing Big-3 provider and switch to one of the new, non-legacy non-ex-government monopoly services get your business. End confusion marketing, bait & switch marketing, and outright lying by these providers by picking someone who thinks he DOESN'T need a new Ferrari this year, or a new yacht, and so your prices have to go up to pay for that "need".

Use TekSavvy or Novus for Internet service. Mobilicity or Wind for Mobile. That's all you need. Cable? Delivered over the Internet. Why do you need to pay for an antique, overly-specialized way to watch video, especially as the quality is not what it should be? Telephone? Get yourself a Voice over IP box, and cut the ridiculous extra costs for printing your bills, making sure the switches are working every month, and a slice-and-dice approach to packaging what is only 1, completely automated service. Connecting the audio of one person to another person. The networks don't CARE where the two people are. The operating costs are the same to connect to your next door neighbour as it is to connect to someone in Chile, Japan, or Timbuktu. We are all being ripped off majorly, and we have been for decades. The thing is, the profit margins have actually been going up, as the new equipment being installed is faster, smarter, has better features, and less management overhead. The telcos tell us that the major investments they make ($BILLIONS!!!!) need to be paid for somehow. The fact is, they chose to implement those upgrade investments because it lowers their costs. Their costs go down, and our fees go up. They're winning both ways.

This is not sustainable, regardless of the belief systems of the senior management, boards of directors, and shareholders.
Re: Shaw Internet Upgrades
December 03, 2011 10:42PM

Sorry for not replying directly to your comments.

I use an Apple Time Capsule for my router/ethernet hub/WiFi hub, which has been working great with Shaw’s own cable modem. They do not provide this “new, improved” Internet service with anything other than a Cisco DPC3825 cable modem/router/ethernet hub/WiFi hub. This was directly from the Tech Support guy I was on the phone with.

The problem is that getting two routers working together usually doesn’t work, or needs MUCH deeper network configuration than I have or is possible to do with the two routers. Shaw’s Twitter support people set their device to bridge mode, which basically means they disable all the router and LAN stuff so it becomes JUST a cable modem.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t make things OK. It appears that how Cisco sees “bridge mode” is different somehow to the way the modem-only box presented itself to the WAN port on my Time Capsule.

Hence, the only solution is to return the network infrastructure to the last known working state.

You had asked about access speed—using SpeedTest, I found I was getting 20Mbps download, and 512kbps upload. This was just fine for everything we were accessing.

So once again, if I could just run into Tim, get my old cable modem (or the same model) back, things will be back to normal around here, and I won’t be hearing about others in my house needing the Internet, so could I please let them use my computer.

Tim, if you’re reading this, could you please drop off the old DOCSIS 2 modem, or call me to arrange a pickup? The scheduled call next week can be to pick up the unwanted boxes. Customer service has already returned my Internet account to
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