A couple of years ago, Cebridge Communications d.b.a. Suddenlink Communications purchased the Alexandria and Lake Charles markets from Cox Communications. Despite the fact that Suddenlink paints itself as a “local” company with “local” service, they are actually one of the ten largest telecommunications companies in the nation. Suddenlink appears to specialize in the maintenance of small to mid-sized markets, and while Baton Rouge, Lafayette, and Shreveport experiment with fiber optics roll-out, it doesn’t look like Alexandria or Lake Charles will enjoy the same timely upgrades.
I could probably write about this issue forever, but for the purposes of this post, there are a few things I wish to bring to your attention:
1. The Suddenlink commercials touting “local” service do not apply to those of us in Alexandria. The nearest “customer service” center is in Pineville, and typically, when you call their technical assistance lines, you’re rerouted to a call center in Tyler, Texas.
2. Suddenlink also touts a mysterious “fiber” service. Read the fine print, because this is nothing like the kind of service offered by our friends down in Lafayette. In fact, call Suddenlink at (318) 640-2892 and ask them how you can get a fiber connection. Then, ask them if you can get a dedicated line. They’ll tell you it won’t “make a difference.” At least that is what I was told.
3. Many of us in Alexandria pay for high-speed internet. Ostensibly, this is supposed to be vastly superior to dial-up (54kbs). However, as of today, the speed of my so-called “high speed internet,” according to Bandwidth Place.com is:
That’s only 30% of the speed I should expect from a dial-up connection.
4. While you’re on the line with the good people at Suddenlink, ask them what they intend to do once television moves entirely into high definition.
And no, this isn’t the commercial I am referencing; I just thought it would be a good idea for all of you to listen to the comedic stylings of Mike Birbiglia (NSFW).