Resolution Of A Recent Pita

By now most recent readers here are familiar with the mis-adventures I’ve been having with Charter Cable and their program guide.

Recapping quickly, I first wrote about the problems we were having with the program guide back on the 5th. The main problem was that after a recent update in their program guide, it would only hold about two to three hours worth of program information at a time. You could check it at 6:00pm and not be able to see anything after 8:00pm except “To Be Announced”.

I called their help number several times without getting any actual help at all. ONE individual in a call center in Nova Scotia sounded like he had perhaps a clue but because that call was at night he didn’t have access to information that could have helped. Everybody else I spoke to (Including one supervisor of a rude woman who wouldn’t allow me to speak) either didn’t get the problem or told me variations on “Two hours is all anyone gets, deal.” This is what prompted me to write that first post on the subject. I am not a hamster, you CANNOT tell me that two hours of program guide is all anyone gets. I refuse to believe it.

The day after that post, Brynn Palmer, who works in Charter’s St. Louis office left a comment offering to have someone look into the situation. This lead to my second post on the subject.

Now things have reached a point where I can actually call the situation resolved. As I said in the update, Andre, the person who Brynn Palmer asked to call me, arranged for a tech to come out and check out the cable box.

There was a problem with it alright. According to the tech, the cable box that we had was twenty years old and the reason that it could not hold more than two or three hours worth of program data was because it just didn’t have as much memory as the newer boxes. Since the new program guide used a lot more memory, there wasn’t much left to hold guide information.

FINALLY an explanation that makes sense!!!

The solution was then simple. He replaced that box with a newer one. This one is apparently only five years old and has considerably more memory. Enough in fact that we now have four days worth of program guide information.

On a side note, the tech also told us that because this is a rural area and doesn’t have a large subscriber base, older equipment like this is pretty common. Apparently places like this are among the last to get newer equipment and then it’s mostly because a more populated area is upgrading and we’re getting their hand-me-downs.

I’ll close this by saying thanks to Brynn Palmer and Andre of Charter for finally getting the situation resolved. I also suggest that in the future when making changes to program guides or other software that has to run in the cable box it would be a very good idea to review the capabilities of the equipment currently in use and upgrade any that lacks capacity BEFORE making the change. You’ll have a lot fewer upset customers if you do.

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