Don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone

We’ve now been without broadband for 13 days and counting.

Michael Thorn

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Photo by Praveen kumar Mathivanan on Unsplash

We’ve now been without broadband for 13 days and counting.

I’ll spare you the details of the two mornings I was waiting at home for an engineer to arrive only to discover that they had never been on their way. On the first occasion it was because the job had been allocated to someone not at work on the day in question. On the second it was because OpenReach had determined the fault was on the line and so a home visit would be of no help. They told my provider this, but not me. That was 10 days ago.

In spite of all this you may be surprised to hear I would still recommend my provider and have no thought of changing once this has been resolved. The main reason is that the speed of response from their support team cannot be faulted.

OFCOM’s automatic compensation scheme means that nearly £90 is already earmarked for my account, and I am due a further sum of compensation from my provider for the failure of their engineer to visit. Nevertheless, I would obviously have preferred this never to have happened.

I do have unlimited data on my mobile phone. Working off an iPhone hotspot for emailing, website updating and copyediting has been do-able but not without frustration — for example, when the iPhone decides of its own accord to switch to the (dead) wifi connection rather than use 4G.

The biggest impact has been on our TV viewing. We’ve suddenly found ourselves unable to stream from Netflix, Prime etc. Emily in Paris has been cut off at the transition between Season 1 and 2.

In the beginning, it was something of a novelty to have to rely on live TV schedules. Never have I scoured the listings so avidly or taken such note of channels I had scarcely been aware of. We have had to go back to using our HUMAX, scheduling programmes to record to disc. That was a challenge in itself, as the recording seemed to take place but then failed to show up on the Media list. The only way round that proved to be to reformat the disc, resulting in the loss of several items reserved for annual viewing at Christmas and countless cricket highlights (which, in fairness, I had never re-watched).

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