I have no complaints about the representative who I spoke with; he was great. He was knowledgeable, professional, and responsive, and told me that they were aware of the outage and working on it.
HOWEVER, I have some pretty serious complaints about Cox's level of service.
First of all, my Internet outage lasted for over 12 hours.
Second, when I called, there was no recorded message informing me that there was a known outage in my area; I had to wait on hold for an extended period of time just to be told something that could have been handled by a recording as soon as I called in.
And speaking of recordings: you're seriously going to make me listen to the same four commercials, over and over again, on a continuous loop? Hey, kudos for finding a way to make being on hold an even MORE unpleasant experience; I didn't think that was actually possible. But I have to wonder, does Cox hate its employees AND its customers? Because this is just about the best way I've ever seen to ensure that a customer is as angry and frustrated as humanly possible before getting to speak to a support tech.
Put bluntly: Cox's Internet service is poor, rates keep increasing even as services are dropped (thanks so much for discontinuing Usenet support and then jacking up my rates five bucks), and saying that calling technical support is like pulling teeth is an insult to dentists everywhere.
Continuing bluntly: the only reason Cox has managed to keep my business is by virtue of being a local monopoly. The only other option for broadband Internet at my address is CenturyLink at 3.0Mbps, which is even more unacceptable than Cox's poor service, frequent outages, high prices, and legitimately terrible hold experience.
And, what's more, I strongly believe that Cox knows this, that the company is well aware that it has a captive audience and can therefore charge high rates for poor service and there is nothing else its customers can do but sit here and take it, because the broadband market has no competition to speak of.
In the short term, I begrudgingly admit that Cox has my business simply by default, because I have nowhere else to go.
In the long term, the market is going to change, competition is going to increase, and all the customers like myself who have spent the past decade being grossly dissatisfied with Cox's service are going to jump ship at the very first opportunity. A hard rain is going to fall.
I strongly suggest that Cox study the lessons of companies like Microsoft -- or, more dramatically, Blockbuster Video. Both of these are examples of companies that had a virtual monopoly in their respective industries. This monoculture allowed them to become bloated and unresponsive, and keep collecting money from their captive customers -- because where else were they going to go?
It didn't last. Technology changed. The markets changed. Blockbuster went bankrupt and, while Microsoft has held on to its majority share in the desktop/laptop OS and office suite markets, it has utterly failed to gain a foothold in emerging markets like phones and tablets, its browser market share has plummeted, and even companies that are using the latest version of Microsoft Office are likelier to use Google Docs for online collaboration.
Did this happen because Blockbuster didn't offer comparable, competetive services to Netflix and Redbox? Did it happen because Windows Phone is a poor operating system, or because Internet Explorer is an inferior browser?
No. Blockbuster offered very competetive prices to Netflix (no, it didn't offer streaming, but Blockbuster went bankrupt before streaming became Netflix's dominant distribution model). Windows Phone has received positive reviews, and Internet Explorer now performs comparably to other standards-compliant browsers.
So why did customers eagerly drop Blockbuster and Microsoft the first chance a viable alternative appeared?
Because that's what happens when you spend a decade taking your customers for granted, charging them a ridiculous rate for a barely-functional product or service, and generally treating them like livestock.
Yes, Blockbuster and Microsoft improved the quality of their products and services once competition started to pressure them into doing it. By then it was too late.
I know Cox is a monopoly in my area. I know there's no short-term incentive for it to improve its service or decrease its cost, because it doesn't have to in order to keep my business.
But if I were running Cox, I would think long and hard about the future. Someday, you ARE going to have a viable competitor. If you want to keep your existing customers' business when that day comes, you should probably start treating them better, right now.
The first thing you should do is stop making your customers listen to commercials when they're on hold.