Aurich Lawson | Getty Images

When Edward Koll as well as his sweetheart, Jo Narkon, acquired as well as relocated right into a brand-new home in Draper, Virginia, in late September 2020, they had every factor to assume that Comcast Internet would certainly be easily offered.

They had actually done their due persistance prior to acquiring your home, connecting the address right into the Comcast web site to ensure it had cord Internet as well as calling Comcast straight to make additional certain. Both the Comcast web site’s schedule mosaic as well as a Comcast sales representative validated to them that your home had solution.

But Comcast had actually provided the pair incorrect info due to a mistake in its insurance coverage map, as well as it really did not inform the pair regarding this blunder up until after they acquired your home. That mored than 6 months back, as well as Koll as well as Narkon still do not have house Internet solution.

“It wasn’t until after we closed on the house that Comcast finally notified us that we were in a ‘dead zone,'” Koll informed Ars when he initially called us on February 12, 2021. “The ends of our street are hooked up, but the middle where we live does not have the service pedestal.”

This had not been the very first time that Comcast, the country’s biggest cord business, has actually wrongly informed consumers that solution would certainly be offered.

Even though it was Comcast’s mistake, the business required $5,000 in advance to expand its network to Koll as well as Narkon’s home. The pair ultimately compensated in late November after identifying it was the only sensible choice. But while Comcast originally assured solution within 90 days of getting the $5,000 settlement, it stopped working to finish the job because timespan.

Comcast currently states the job will lastly be finished by April 15, over 6 weeks after the initial 90-day price quote handed down March 2. The pair has actually been making use of mobile hotspots for Internet gain access to the whole time they have actually stayed in your home due to Comcast giving incorrect schedule info and after that falling short to finish the setup on schedule.

Comcast: “[We] did not live up to our standards”

Comcast appeared to take the trouble a lot more seriously after Ars spoke to the business’s public connections division, ultimately guaranteeing a $5,000 credit score.

“Mr. Koll’s experience did not live up to our standards and we are very sorry for the inconvenience this has caused, therefore, we will be applying a credit to his account equal to $5,000,” Comcast informed Ars on March 29, after a couple of weeks of back-and-forth interaction.

“The shocking part of it was Comcast’s refusal to even own this,” Koll informed Ars in a phone meeting recently, after Comcast accepted the $5,000 credit score. “They just kind of brushed it off and we really did not get any traction on this until we reached out to you [at Ars].”

A Comcast representative called the pair the other day to validate that solution will certainly be set up on Thursday, April 15, at some point in between 8 am as well as 10 am, Koll informed us. Even afterwards telephone call, Koll stated he is “not convinced” the job is much sufficient along to be completed already. But they have actually gotten Internet, TELEVISION, as well as phone company, as well as the pair is changing their mobile phone over to Comcast’s mobile solution. The complete rate is approximated at $249 a month, Koll stated. At that rate, the $5,000 credit score will certainly last regarding 20 months. Virginia is just one of the states where Comcast unwillingly accepted postpone data-cap enforcement up until 2022.

No choice yet to pay $5,000

Between e-mails, telephone call, as well as in-person check outs, Koll stated he had loads of calls with Comcast over the previous 6 months to attempt to arrange the mess out. “Comcast said, ‘yeah, our agents told you that service was available and they promised you that it was right there at your doorstep, but they were wrong,'” Koll stated.

One installer came to your home as well as, Koll informed Ars, “said, ‘I need to go find out where your service line is,’ and then he disappeared. He never came back. And then we had two other installers and there was finally the third guy who said, ‘You don’t have a service pedestal close enough and you’re looking at a hefty bill just to have it installed.'”

After hearing Comcast’s need for $5,000, Koll whined to the FCC, yet the company “followed up with Comcast and accepted their explanation without comment,” Koll informed Ars. Koll stated he additionally spoke to the workplaces people Sens. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) as well as Mark Warner (D-Va.) with no outcomes.

Edward Koll at his home.

Edward Koll at his house.

Gigabit Internet “is available for your address”

Koll supplied Ars a duplicate of the $5,000 billing dated November 30 together with conversation as well as e-mail records from discussions he had with Comcast.

In an on the internet conversation prior to they acquired your home, Koll asked a Comcast representative to validate that gigabit Internet solution as well as cable television would certainly be offered. The representative informed him that “the Gigabit Speeds Internet plan is available for your address” which a 2-year agreement would certainly set you back “$169.99/mo plus equipment, taxes, and fees.”

The representative informed Koll to get solution 5 to 8 company days ahead of time in instance cord required to be gone to your home, making it seem like it would certainly be a very easy procedure as well as not a six-month challenge. But the Comcast representative was incorrect since Comcast’s system was giving incorrect info. Koll put an order for Comcast solution over the phone on August 25, as well as the pair shut on your home on September 24, relocating the very same day. Even when approving the order, Comcast really did not understand that it had not expanded its network close sufficient to your home to give solution.

Comcast boasts about its gigabit network in a slide from a press kit.

Comcast flaunts regarding its gigabit network in a slide from a press set.


On November 1, 2020, Koll responded to an e-mail from a Comcast representative in the exec client connections division as well as mentioned that Comcast’s solution map revealed his address as having solution. Koll’s e-mail additionally mentioned that he had actually put an order for solution on August 25 “and at the same time put a deposit into the account so that service would be installed on or before closing on this house.”

“Given the multiple assurances from Comcast for service and the lengthy delays we have already endured, I anticipate a quick resolution to this matter,” Koll composed in that e-mail.

But there was no fast or affordable resolution. “We reluctantly agreed to pay $5,000 in November to have the service pedestal installed despite Comcast’s earlier promises regarding existing service availability,” Koll informed Ars, months later on.

“We really need help”

Koll very first called us after checking out among our posts regarding a 90-year-old AT&T client, Aaron Epstein, that acquired an advertisement in The Wall Street Journal to grumble regarding AT&T’s sluggish Internet solution. At the moment, Koll had not been certain that Comcast would certainly set up solution in all.

“We really need help, similar to Mr. Epstein,” Koll informed Ars in his very first e-mail to us. “We need to get the service we were promised installed. We would like to have the $5,000 back, but at this point are willing to accept that as a credit towards future bills. Comcast has offered two free months, which does not come close to the amount we have paid.”

Although Comcast later on accepted a credit report equivalent to the sum total they paid, the business did not inform us why it will not reimburse the $5,000 rather than giving it as a costs credit score. That basically implies they needed to pay $5,000 ahead of time for around 20 months of solution, a preliminary expenditure that brand-new Comcast consumers typically would not need to pay.

Comcast solutions map, months far too late

In late March, Comcast lastly upgraded its insurance coverage map as well as on-line schedule mosaic to properly reveal Koll’s address as unserved. So why did Comcast’s web site as well as a Comcast sales representative wrongly inform Koll that solution was currently offered at the house?

“This is not a common occurrence and we have to look into these instances on a case-by-case basis,” Comcast stated. “For this specific address, it was included in a database from a company we acquired many years ago. Our local teams are planning a further review of that regional database.”

Cable firms have actually fallen short for several years to create even more exact solution maps. The cord market’s most significant entrance hall team combated versus demands to send address-level information to the Federal Communications Commission, informing the FCC in 2017 that it’s also hard as well as pricey to find out precisely where they can as well as can not provide solution.

The FCC lastly purchased ISPs to send geospatial maps of where they give solution in 2019, yet then-FCC Chairman Ajit Pai did not end up establishing the brand-new system prior to leaving workplace in January 2021. Upon replacing Pai, acting FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel discovered “that we had a lot of work to do and hadn’t yet begun many of the steps required to actually build a collection system,” she composed.