I’ve had it with Smart Bro!
We’ve been a subscriber of Smart Bro for more than 2 years already (Smart Bro Unlimited Internet for 999 pesos every month). I chose them over Globe and Sun because they did not have bandwidth capping then. They advertised for unlimited internet. The contract says unlimited internet and does not include anything about bandwidth capping. Just to be sure, I also asked one of their agents if they really do not have bandwidth capping, which he affirmed. And so I was a very happy subscriber with only a few instances of slow internet, usually when there is a heavy storm.
But ever since this summer, we have been experiencing very slow internet connection. I was not in the country during those times but my siblings reported the incident to me. They even called the Smart Bro hotline yet the issue was not resolved. It was only when I got back from abroad that I got to experience the snail-like internet connection.
Since I was so fed up with this bad connection, I decided to send a tweet to @SMARTCares. Here’s how our conversation went:
And here’s a screenshot of our DMs:
Here’s a screenshot of the internet connection that I am complaining about:
Upon searching on Google using “Smart Bro slow internet” as keywords, I saw that I share the same problem with so many other Smart Bro subscribers. We are all experiencing very slooow internet connection since this April.
The reason for all this trouble: PLDT has started implementing a myBro Fair Usage Policy and we were not even informed about it. The policy says that when subscribers reach the optimum volume allocation for a single user, they will lower your speed. This lowering of bandwidth is known as bandwidth capping or throttling. During my early months as a subscriber, we could reach up to 700 kbps. Last year, we were average 300 kbps. Now, we get just less than 100 kbps. Ano to? Dial-up?
Another note, those who use torrent softwares are also included in the said policy: “The service level and/or connectivity to users of peer-to-peer and machine-to-machine software/applications is modulated to ensure that all customers get the best fixed wireless Internet experience.”
According to an article online, the monthly bandwidth allocation for Smart Bro/myBro subs is only 15GB. (UPDATE: According to other users, the limit is now 50GB.) If you have used that much data before the end of the month, you will experience a slowdown in connection. The normal speed will return the following month.
This is just so unfair! I do not get what’s fair in their Fair Usage Policy. I signed up for unlimited internet service with no bandwidth cap. The nerve of PLDT and Smart to implement this without even informing us. Whereas if we were just late for a few weeks in paying our bills, we get so many calls reminding us of our obligations.
Because of this, I want to change my internet service provider… but I can’t! We’re still locked-in until March 2014. They are asking us to pay a termination fee as stated in the contract. So unfair right? 🙁
And because of the slow internet connection with Smart Bro, I am posting this article by tethering my internet from my mobile under Globe MySuperSurf 999 Postpaid Plan. Check out the speed of Globe vs Smart below:
Such a big difference in speed! I am mostly working from home and I can’t get much work done using our Smart Bro connection at home.
To those who are thinking of availing a myBro plan, think first whether you are okay with this policy. They are still advertising Unlimited Internet, but how could it be unlimited if there is a limit?
Thus, to all those Smart Bro subscribers who are in the same predicament as I am, sign this petition at Change.org: https://www.change.org/ph/mga-petisyon/no-to-smart-pldt-fair-use-policy-trash-the-fair-use-policy. And do not forget to lodge a complaint at NTC here: http://www.ntc.gov.ph/complaintpage2.php.
You can also like this Facebook page and connect with other subscribers who are having the same problem. It would also be a big help if you would share this article so we could get more people to sign the petition.
Let us boycott Smart Bro. I will not pay our bills at Smart Bro until they return the real UNLIMITED INTERNET and remove the bandwidth throttling.
♥ Monique ♥
UPDATE: We have been exempted from the FUP. That was after filing 2 complaints at NTC and complaining through their customer service hotline. I think the events occurred between July 24 and July 26. I filed two complaints at NTC. One is about the slow internet connection and the other one is about the unfairness of implementing the FUP without informing the subscribers about it. I got an email from NTC forwarding my complaints to NTC. After that, I got a call from SmartBro customer service. I complained so much about their poor service. The conversation was very long… it lasted for almost an hour! And then the customer service representative informed me that there is a way to be exempted from this and that he will submit a proposal for approval by their boss. I told him that he should do that. And then around 2 days later, he called me again informing me that my account has been exempted from FUP. That’s it. (Even when they exempted us, as a form of protest, we are still not paying our bills until they lift the FUP for all subscribers.)
UPDATE: SmartBro already disconnected our internet service end of September 2013 due to non-payment.