For some reason every interaction I have with telecommunications companies seems to leave me feeling that they are deliberately trying to make life difficult. They always seem to want to put up barriers against easy usage, charges for changing company, charges to fix their own errors etc. I can't help but feel that if they were regulated by similar rules as the financial services industry (Post RDR) they would find life a hell of a lot more difficult. There seems to be no equivalent of 'Treating customers fairly'. Its also my opinion that they were much more straight-forward to deal with when they did one thing each. It seems that managing my phone, mobile, tv and internet services is too daunting a prospect for a single company anymore.
Just this morning, for instance, BT charged me £30 to STOP providing me broadband. I wasn't in a minimum term contract and I wasn't asking for anything special. That's what they charge every customer who moves to cable. If you stick with ADSL, even with another company, you don't have to pay them the fee. That is actually providing a disincentive against customers moving to a better, easier managed, forward thinking technology. I would understand if they were a smaller company, with no vested interest in infrastructure, but BT actually stand to benefit from people moving to the newer system, so what on earth am I being charged for? To further add insult to injury, they completely lied about ever having being told to cancel the service (a month ago) and so I have to pay them another month's internet, that i'm not using, for their mistake.
Sadly the above episode is just one example from an entire novel's worth of misery from my interactions with almost all telecoms companies. Technology has moved forward so much in the last 15 years but in some ways we've paid the price for not holding the consumer level companies to their promise to correctly manage it and not shaft the customer.