Wednesday, February 27, 2013

StarHub replies --- two months later...and 'it's not our fault'

I posted an item two months ago -- Dec 14, 2012 to be exact --- about
StarHub springing a surprise on me with this message on my computer screeen...

"Your PC/router DNS settings is currently configured to link to our decommissioned DNS server, and thus being re-directed to this webpage.

Please note that as your PC/router has been set to manual DNS settings, your internet access will be affected and must be re-configured to automatic DNS selection in order to restore normal internet access to your computer...."

It went on to instruct me on how to solve the problem without realising it was dealing with a non-technical person. Ultimately, I had to call the telco to send a technician before I could regain my internet connection.

After all the hassle was over, I decided to write about it. I also alerted StarHub to the posting,  titled:  "StarHub springs a surprise -- go reconfigure yourself".

There was complete silence for more than two months UNTIL today when, surprise, surprise!!! , I got this reply from the telco:

"We refer to your blog entry dated 14 December 2012 at and we sincerely apologise for the
delayed response to your feedback.

We would like to clarify that any change in StarHub's DNS settings is
meant to be transparent to customers as computers and network
equipment will retrieve the new settings automatically via DHCP
(Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol). DHCP is used all over the
world to dynamically assign IP configuration settings to end-users.

From your description, it would appear that your equipment's setting
was hardcoded with a static DNS setting which resulted in the loss of
Internet connectivity. Unfortunately, we will not know who edited the
settings on your equipment since this will usually require physical
access to it.

While the settings on your equipment is beyond StarHub's control, we
sincerely apologise if this episode had given you the impression that
we have disconnected your internet without prior notice.

Please feel free to write to us if you require further clarification
on this.

Thank you.

Warm regards

Howard Toh
Service Manager, Technical Helpdesk"

What is StarHub telling me???  That I or someone in my house had tampered with the setting? 

I like the sensitive manner in which Mr Toh put it: "Unfortunately, we will not know who edited the settings on your equipment since this will usually require physical access to it."

Hello, Mr Toh, I am the only person using the computer in my household and, for the life of me, I have absolutely no idea what is meant by "hardcoded"  or "static DNS setting" let alone knowing how to reset the equipment.

What intrigues me now is why the telco has suddenly jumped to life and decided to respond to my complaint.  

If you were to check my blog, there are many which they have not bothered to do so.

And I have many more complaints which I have not blogged about StarHub

Sunday, February 24, 2013

StarHub sucks --- again!!!

While reading some of the postings by hotelier Loh Lik Peng in his blog,
Loh and Behold, I spotted one that commented on StarHub's poor service.   
My friends and I have written and complained ad nauseum to the telco about its service but to no avail so far.  So when I saw Loh's story, I thought I would lift it wholesale (I hope he won't mind) and post it in my blog.
A bit more pressure would make the telco see the light, I hope.
Below is Loh's posting last December....

StarHub Sucks!

"I’ve terminated my StarHub fixed broadband service and some dude named Adrian Koh from their Retention Team had the balls to email me to find out why.

To all the clowns at StarHub, here’s why:
Service from StarHub has always been inadequate commensurate with the price charged. For example to cancel my StarHub fixed broadband service, I first phoned in October to inform StarHub.

I phoned again in November, just to make sure. (In the past, my experience with StarHub has been you need to remind them over and over again for the slightest shit you want done.)

And in December I phoned yet again. Each time I phoned I was told that my request has been noted. But way past the last date of service (which was December 15th) the fixed broadband service was still available and I had to call once again to request for termination.

Finally spoke to a person named “Heuer” on the other end of the line and he was the one who eventually terminated the fixed broadband service for me on December 17th.

How any times does a customer need to phone and phone? This fucked-up level of service – I can’t imagine anything more shoddy that this - is among the reasons why I decided not to renew my fixed broadband service with StarHub.

Besides, other providers now offer fiber with NO contract at cheaper prices.
For those still stuck with StarFucks do consider moving. And check your bills.

My son’s cell phone bill recently had a charge for roaming in Malaysia and he wasn’t even in Malaysia.

StarHub, please get your act together. There are enough clowns in Singapore already. No need to add to the ballooning population of jokers, retards and morons here."



Friday, February 15, 2013

SIA's Valentine's Day service lacks attention to detail

It was Valentine's Day, but, sadly, much of the romance was spoilt by the "service that others talk about" as the Tongs flew SQ biz class to Hong Kong to celebrate their anniversary.
      Madam Thng Poh Choo, the wife, was upset by the way her bread roll was served.  And KC, her hubby, was not thrilled when he bit into his cereal.
      Poh Choo, who knows a thing or two about quality service, having been a stewardess herself in SQ's first-class cabins many, many years ago, decided she should email me to give her feedback.
      She says: "Small a complaint it may be, (but) it is certainly something for the crew to think about.
      "When a passenger decides to forgo her main course and asks for a bread roll....mind you, this roll is now my main course.....the crew serving this bread roll must have some PRIDE in wanting to present the bread roll warm."
      Unfortunately, it came to her cold. And when she requested for it to be warmed up, "it came back to me in a hot, soft and puff-like nature..."
      She was elated and thought to herself: "Well done, crew! Hot bread roll!"
      But her joy was short-lived.  She says:  "In less than a minute (seems like a minute...I cannot be accurate here) after tearing up the roll into pieces, I could feel the roll hardening up.... making it not so good to eat.
       "Was it microwaved? I asked the Chief Steward.
       "He said, "we do not have a microwave on board".
       "What the Chief Steward could have done was to stop for 30 seconds and asked me if there was anything wrong with my roll....
        "In the case of my husband, besides having to eat his overly-drenched and soggy cereal, he had to call for a clean spoon when he was served the main course  --  chicken congee.
        "It is not Economy class service we expect in Business Class!! Attention to such details seems lacking today (February 14)."
        Calling on SQ to "kindly re-train these girls", she adds a pointer on how to prepare cereal: "They should not pour the milk into the cereal too early. Cereal should be eaten with a crunch even if it is taken with milk. The trick is to serve the cereal with the milk poured in at the very last is not difficult to serve this simple dish."
        The Tongs, however, had a pleasant surprise when the crew brought out an anniversary cake for them just before landing, but Poh Choo could not help but wonder: "How am I supposed to enjoy this cake? Take-away? It was quite funny!"
        As a former Singapore Girl, she says she understands that "the crew want to work fast" but she qualifies that by adding: "They must not compromise on quality."

Friday, February 8, 2013

Anne's web chat with NTUC Income

Anne Holloway emailed me this transcript of her web chat with an NTUC Income employee regarding her IncomeShield policy. The heading of her email was: Read this and cry...

Customer Service: Welcome to NTUC Income Contact Centre.
Customer Service: Please hold while we connect you to one of our Customer Service Representatives...

Anne Wong Holloway: It's 4:46 pm on Wed, 30 Jan.
Anne: How long do I need to wait? (Finally I got someone - Troms - at 4:49pm; usually web support chat reps answer much quicker)

Troms: Good afternoon, Ms Holloway.
Troms: We are sorry for the delay.
Troms: How may I help you?

Anne: Yes, at last!

Troms: Thank you for your patience Ms Holloway.

Anne: My Incomeshield policy is 9xxxx118 - I am informed online by POSB and also by your own website that the number does not have enough digits for me to effect online payment of my premium. What do I need to do?

Troms: How can I complete your afternoon today?
Troms: Thank you for the information.

Anne: You can help me make a premium payment

Troms: Let me check that for you.
Troms: One moment please.
Troms: Can I call you Ms Holloway?
Troms: May I have your number?

Anne: You can call me what you like as long as I can get this done ASAP
Anne: What number?

Troms: I would like to assist you in making the payment online. I will contact you on your phone number.

Anne: 9xxxx118 is my policy number; I am in Hong Kong now and can be reached on my HK home number +852 2812 xxxx

Troms: Oh I see. I apologise I`m unable to contact overseas number. Anyway, I`ll just assist you as quick as I can.

Anne: I see my premium should not be due immediately although my NTUC agent keeps chasing me - my policy renews 28 February.

Troms: Before we proceed Ms Holloway, I need to do a quick verification. May I obtain your Date of Birth and NRIC number?
Troms: I`m sorry to hear that your agent keeps chasing you.

Anne: S0xxxxxxx is NRIC and DOB is xx xx xxxx

Troms: Don`t worry, I`ll do my best to assist you from here.
Troms: Great! Thank you for your cooperation, Ms Holloway.
Troms: You need a bill reference number to make an internet banking payment. Is that what you were trying to do? Online banking payment?

Anne: How is it that my policy number is a few digits shorter than what is needed to pay online via your website and POSB's website?

Troms: Policy Number is different from Bill Reference Number, Ms Holloway.

Anne: I don't have a bill ref number, I only have what I can see of my policy details on your website.

Troms: At the moment, we have not generated any bill reference number yet.
Troms: The bill reference number can be found on the payment notice that we send to policyholders around one to two weeks from their renewal date.
Troms: You are correct. Your current policy will expire by 28 Feb 2013.

Anne: I am in HK, how would I have my bill number if they did not post it on the NTUC website with my policy details? BUPA, IHI etc all give full details to facilitate payment. And about 2 months in advance as well. Now, why is my agent chasing me for payment when a bill has not been generated?

Troms: It will renew on 01 March 2013.

Anne: This all means I cannot make a payment today?

Troms: The bill reference number will be generated around first week of March.

Anne: Now that's rather late for payment due before renewal, no?

Troms: Correct, Ms Holloway, the payment is not necessary today.
Troms: The grace period for your policy is 60 days from 01 March 2013.

Anne: OK then, I won't waste any more of your time -- or mine! Thank you.

Troms: No worries. We are always here to help you.
Troms: Since you are overseas, you can also send an email to us if you have enquiries.
Troms: Our email address is
Troms: Is there anything else I may help you with Ms Holloway?

Anne: No thanks a lot. Bye

Troms: It`s my pleasure to help you. Enjoy your stay in HK!
Troms: Goodbye.

Anne: Oh, by the way, do you offer a transcript of this webchat?

Troms: I will send it to your email address, is that okay?

Anne: Terrific, thanks again. Bye.

Troms: May I verify that your email address is

Anne: Yes, indeed it is. I look forward to the transcript.