So I finally pulled the trigger about two weeks ago and decided to order cable for my apartment. I've been living here 2 years, and up until this point (gasp!) I haven't had cable. Over the air HDTV has been fine for most of my viewing needs; there are like 30 channels here in Chicago, some better than others. Add in Netflix with DVDs and Blu-rays, and there was enough to keep me occupied.

There are two or three television providers available in Chicago, not counting satellite which I can't do in my apartment anyway. RCN and AT&T are both in the city, but the only company to currently service my 169 unit apartment building is Comcast. Going into all this, I had a relatively neutral opinion of Comcast. The positives were from my parent's experience with Comcast vs. their current cable provider; the negatives were that it tended to be a bit pricey compared to the competition. Of course, they have no competition in my building, so I didn't have much of a choice- them or nothing.

Fast forward ten days or so- the install got scheduled quickly, it was quick, and things just worked. However, worked doesn't mean I got what I ordered. I saved the transcript as a matter of fact from the online chat you get roped into when signing up.

Katherin > Daniel, I can see here that you want the digital starter package for 49.99, is that correct?
Daniel_ > yep
Katherin > And you also want HD/DVR, is that correct?
Daniel_ > correct
Katherin > Perfect!
Katherin > Let me go ahead and process your order. i will get back at you as soon as I am done. Please give me three to four minutes.
Daniel_ > ok
Katherin > I have good news fo r you!
Katherin > I can offer you the digital starter for only 39.99, would you like to have that one instead?
Daniel_ > it sounds good, but does that come with a contract?
Katherin > That is available for 6 months, I mean the promo is for 6 months.
Daniel_ > ok
Daniel_ > then sure
Katherin > Great!
Katherin > Let me process that one for you.
Katherin > I just gave you a 2$ discount on your 39.99 package as well Daniel.
Daniel_ > awesome
Katherin > Perfect!
Katherin > That discount is valid for three months.
Daniel_ > sounds great
Katherin > Great indeed.
Katherin > Your total balance is now at 132.94, including your HDTV, DVR, Installation and other taxes.
Daniel_ > ok
Katherin > I would like to inform you that you will be paying that to our technician upon install.
Daniel_ > ok

If you read that, it is pretty clear I ordered HD/DVR service with the digital starter package. In addition, this plan should cost me $37.99 for the first three months (note the $2 discount comment) and then $39.99 for the next three months.

So if anyone from Comcast is paying attention, here is what you have managed to screw up (or is that screw me over on?):

  • When you showed up at my apartment, you brought a HD cable box, but not an HD/DVR. I still have this box.
  • When I paid $132.94 at the install time, I didn't get an itemized bill. I figured you were being honest; that was a mistake.
  • Five days later, you send me a bill in the mail for an additional $15.11, bringing the total to $148.05. What?!
  • When I look at this bill, it is quite a ways from what was expected:
    • Two "HD/DVR Activation" line items for $16.49 each. I have one box, and it is not a DVR.
    • The "Digital Starter Pkg" is listed as being $59.98. There is a $1.99 discount on the bill, but $59.99 != $39.99.

I'm not at all looking forward to spending a half hour on the phone tomorrow trying to get this all straightened out. Thanks Con-cast!