Sunday, September 25, 2011

ISP in Italy: Fastweb

I'd like to share my experience with local Internet Providers as a regular user, not a tech guy. Hope it'll help those looking for ISP offers.

Disclaimer: I'm not affiliated with none of them; nobody pays me for doing this. This post is valid for Northern Italy. The deal might be different in your region.

Fastweb is a relatively big company, counting 3.4K employees and about 1.7M clients (end of 2010). I've been their client too 'till just a couple months ago, when I moved to Tiscali. Why did I switch?

Things I didn't like:
  1. You can't do VPN (PPTP) connection at all unless you get a Public IP address. You can only get it for a limited amount of hours for free. That really sucks. 
  2. Their DHCP server gives out only 2 IP addresses maximum. If you want to connect a 3rd+ device, you'll have to setup your own in-house DHCP server. That really sucks too.
  3. Clumsy "my fastweb"page, full of advertisement. I mean, 40 euro/month and I'm supposed to help you guys raising your ads marketshare while I'm just looking for my bills stuff? Ridiculous.
  4. A way too many passwords. One for "my fastweb" page, another for checking your bills and contract info, plus one more to get to another page and so on. Oh and by the way, you can't choose your own usernames. So you'll have to remember / save somewhere your usernames too (digits mixed with your name/surname)
  5. Tech support really sucks. There's no direct landline. You can fill in an online form though or call them on their Fastweb internal phone number (doesn't work from a regular landline). Well, guess what, neither online form nor your internal tech support phone line DOESN'T WORK if you got your ADSL down. Ever thought of this scenario?
  6. The only way you could get a side offer from them (see below) or change your ADSL connection contract was to have them call you. Well, I did try it once. I had a very unpleasant phone call. After the first minute I realized that wasn't the offer I was looking for. Instead of hanging up the guy started offering me things I didn't even want, which, you know, I kindly told him about. Well, he didn't want to give up for at least 25 mins when I just said "alright, thanks for your effort but I'm hanging up right now. ciao." Never tried to have them call me back again.
  7. There was a little page accessible only from my ADSL line, "Your promotions / special offers". Guess what, it stayed there, always empty for the last couple years. I was a little annoyed watching that empty page while seeing other ISPs promotions flying by. That's when I quit and switched to Tiscali.
Things I liked:
  1. I have to admit it really was fast (~5.2Mbps), almost as advertised (7Mbps).
  2. They do (often) have some good (not often) side offers: laptops, cellphones, TV sets, etc. Too bad the only way to order it was to have them call you (see n.6)

Next ISP: Tiscali.

No comments:

Post a Comment

What do you think?