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895 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 284

Topic # 86339 5-Jul-2011 10:26
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I used to be on TelstraClear cable.  Which was OK.  There were some issues -- anywhere that tracerouted through reach had poor performance, and they don't peer, but apart from that the service was well-priced and had reasonable performance.  I was, dare I say it, happy.

I moved (due to getting married) at the end of May.  New place had TelstraClear cable in the street but they had some reason why we couldn't be connected.  So it was DSL time.

So 3 weeks before I moved in (during which my fiancee was stuck without internet) I phoned up slingshot and signed up for Naked DSL.  The guy on the phone said that they provisioned Naked DSL by provisioning a landline, then turning on DSL, then switching to naked.  And the phone line worked the day after my fiancee moved in.  Which was awesome.

Came back from honeymoon at the very end of May to discover there was still no DSL on the line.  Rang up slingshot and the guy I talked to seemed competent and put through an urgent order to provision naked DSL.

Naked DSL came up that week.  The iTalk line that we'd asked them to port a number took ages to come through (another week or two?).  

Because the italk line was taking so long someone at the callcentre provisioned us an extra one so we'd have a phone, even if it had the wrong number.  So this helped.

Eventually the italk line with the correct ported number appeared so I switched the config on the ATA and forgot about it.

At some point during this debacle I received our first bill.  It had homeline charges, homeline setup charges, no sign of the refund of these I was promised by the person I first spoke to about getting naked DSL.  So I called up and complained and they sent me a letter saying they'd investigated and the charges were refunded.

I've just received what I think is our third bill.  It contains such gems as

  • $28.32 of iTalk line charges, including a $10 credit which I assume is how they make the "free italk with naked DSL" bit work.  $28.32 is not free.  Yes, that line they first provisioned so I could get some phone service at all is still there and we've been charged for almost two months of it.

  • $25 of early termination charges for the slingshot cheap talk plan on that homeline we didn't want

To add insult to injury, the broadband provided by slingshot is really slow.  I've never seen over 1Mbps international on an individual TCP connection for more than a few seconds at a time, and it's usually worse.  I know I should be able to get better performance because with the same computer, connecting to the same sites on the internet, things were much faster on TelstraClear.

Even if they fix the billing nightmare (for the second or third time, now) they're not going to be able fix the crappy performance for just me.  So I think I want out.  Don't know where to -- maybe WorldxChange? -- but this ongoing nightmare is not worth me saving $20/mo.

I have no idea if I'm on a 12 month contract or anything, but if they try to charge me early termination I intend to take them to the disputes tribunal.


  • any advice on what to say to them when I call about this

  • who should I switch to? I want naked DSL (have been on VoIP since 2005), someone who peers, isn't slow, and won't drive me up the wall.  I'd love a free traffic in the wee hours option but no one else does this anymore?

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8025 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 387


  Reply # 489655 5-Jul-2011 13:40
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Lowest price, most benefits on paper (free off peak etc)
Poor performance
Bad customer service
Long delays

Yep sounds like Slingshot's to me

What to do...

Post on their Twitter and Facebook pages linking to this thread
Read up on your legal rights (CGA, Fair Trading Act) on Consumer

Ring help desk
- Ask how long is left on your contract
- Ask when the billing errors will be corrected
- Ask to speak to a manager
- Ask to lay a complaint

920 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 65


  Reply # 489678 5-Jul-2011 15:08
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FYI WorldxChange does have the option of NDSL with 75gig of freeish data off peak (2am - 8am). The downside of choosing that option is that your on peak data rates go up approx $0.50 cents per gig on peak.

I have been using NDSL for 4 or 5 years now and I am very happy with the service I got and (even more recently) the speeds I get.

They have a lot of options on how you manage your date too. You can choose to throttle it once you get to a certain point or a certain $$$ amount.

After the initial teething period (which was a week or two) I have had no problems and I doubt I have even rung them in the last 18 - 24 months. Which i feel is proof they provide a good service either that or I'm easy to please. Hmmmm......

Now I have said all that there may have been some changes to the above but if so I have not noticed any. As for usage I probably download 40 - 70 gig of stuff a month and am a avid gamer with at least one person constantly online (usually) gaming either on Xbox or most recently Steam. My bills range between $100 - $130 dependent on how much peak time downloading I do.

Good luck and I would certainly recommend WorldxChange.

895 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 284

  Reply # 489681 5-Jul-2011 15:10
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Ragnor: Lowest price, most benefits on paper (free off peak etc)
Poor performance
Bad customer service
Long delays

Yep sounds like Slingshot's to me

Still kicking myself because I know they're crappy (completely stuffed up a friend's number port) but thought "surely bad experiences only happen to a few people" and "it can't possible be that bad".  It is.  Worse, in fact.

iTalk seems like a good product.  I'm happy to keep that and switch to someone else's naked DSL.

Slingshot's traffic shaping is very very agressive.  I can watch a bandwidth graph as I download a 100MB file and it spikes to a few megabits per second and then eases off to about 1Mbps and stays there forever.  I'm not a heavy user -- came in well undercap last month -- and that's just not good enough.  I'd expect that sort of thing if I was on All You Can Eat.  But I'm not.  Ironically torrenting, with its many many connections to different hosts, would be faster than my rsyncing things over ssh.

895 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 284

  Reply # 489683 5-Jul-2011 15:15
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jtbthatsme: FYI WorldxChange does have the option of NDSL with 75gig of freeish data off peak (2am - 8am). The downside of choosing that option is that your on peak data rates go up approx $0.50 cents per gig on peak.

Is that plan still available?  It isn't mentioned on their website -- if it had been, I would have signed up with them in the first place.

I heard WxC had problems with speed when a friend of mine was with them a year or two ago ... what sort of speeds do you get with normal international http downloads (e.g. of )?

920 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 65


  Reply # 489700 5-Jul-2011 15:45
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Just took a few seconds maybe 10 at the max to get that file.  It was still speeding up when the file finished and was at 720kBps when it finished.

As for the data charges you may be right well if theres no offpeak anywhere else looks like im staying with WorldxChange.  Still they're a good provider though.

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