Top 10 posts of 2012 on ‘My two cents’

Last month of 2012 was ‘off the grid’ mode and ‘out of office’ schedule for me. First half of the month was spent in organizing my wedding and getting married, and the second half of December was for honeymoon and to get over ‘wedding hangover’.

So, here is the top 10 list that rolls out every year during the last week, albeit a few days delayed.

Latest and best addition to my site in 2012 was a section for my Wedding! I also changed the name of the blog to ‘My two cents’.

You can also take a look at similar lists from the last couple of years: 20092010 and 2011.

And now, the list of 10 key posts for 2012 on my blog – My two cents:

  1. 30+ observations in 30 days – Ford Figo
    I bought a Ford Figo in June 2012 and this post was published about one month after that. It is a list of my observations about the car. Ford released another generation of Figo after my purchase, so the discussion in here is about 2nd generation vehicle.
  2. 7+ security features of Ford Figo
    Looks like there are a few Figo enthusiasts on the web, as this is the second post I published, to explain further on the ‘security features’ of Figo. Search keyword analysis shows that many are curious about the door locks (practically absent).
  3. To hell with you – Jabong!
    My two cents about the growing online shopping site. Many seem to like and appreciate the effort by Jabong but my first two orders were screwed up and it’s difficult for me to agree with the lot.
  4. A drive through the Eastern Ghats
    Our vacation in 2012 was a long drive through Eastern Ghats for 3 days covering a lot of forest area, Araku valley, Vizag, etc.. This post lists the places we covered, pictures from our journey and a route trace of the path we traveled. What a wonderful drive it was!
  5. Hampta Pass Trek – Reality Check
    Our vacation in 2011 was a week’s trek in The Himalayas through Hampta Pass. This post is a first-hand experience ‘reality check’ that is informative, especially to those who are planning to experience the once-in-a-life-time adventure.
  6. Airtel and the proof of address
    This was a post from a very long time ago when Airtel pissed me off with their documentation policies. Since then, I’ve trashed the Airtel mobile number, bought a new set for my family from DoCoMo and after a year or so moved on to Vodafone with MNP. Good traffic to this post indicates that Airtel is still pissing people off very bad!
  7. Review – LG Customer Care
    LG is one company I’m seriously going to stay away from for a long time. My sincere recommendation to you all: Don’t buy any appliance from LG. Unable to deal with their cheap service stock and just to get rid of LG, I ended the relationship and threw away my refrigerator.
  8. To Zoomin, with love
    When I become a victim of a bad Customer Service and have no choice but deal with few idiots like LG and BlackBerry, I complain, crib and vent out on the blog. But again, when I see some good folks around, I share the love too!
  9. Hyderabad City needs to Kill Car demand to decrease Traffic Congestion
    This one is a guest post by Pragati Prasad addressing traffic situation in Hyderabad. I’ve shared my views too about the situation before.
  10. BlackBerry: My action is to – kick your ass!
    Bad Customer Service is not new to me. But given the name and impression of BB, this was a shocking experience. I’m still surprised how BB has corporate customers!

There you go!

What else did you find interesting on this blog? Let me know.

Wish you all a successful year ahead! 🙂

2011 Resolution check: 75% complete!

I say, not bad!

This was my new year resolution for this year: 2011: Leave airtel and quit Orkut.

If you do the math in 3 secs, it would come to 50% complete. Let me explain a little further and make it 75%! 😛

Leaving airtel was half of it; and the orkut quitting was the other half. I already wrote multiple times about airtel here, here and here.

I just deleted orkut account moments ago and immediately started composing this post, so that’s 50% complete already! (I know I should have deleted the thing a long time ago, but I had thought I already deleted it, until somebody sent a scrap two days ago. AND, I confirmed there is no way to change login email before I deleted, one of my primary reasons. Of course, copy-pasted the few testimonials I had in there.)

Coming to the other half: leaving airtel. I use(d) two services from airtel: mobile and broadband. So, 25% contribution each towards my resolution.

Now, I’ve cancelled the mobile connection very early in 2011 and moved to DoCoMo. So, another 25% of my total resolution target is complete.

The remaining 25% is incomplete. And here are the reasons:

  • There isn’t any other provider in my location to offer broadband connection.
  • When I told airtel my problems and requested to cancel, they offered a new plan at discounted price for a quarter. Nice gesture!
  • Didn’t want to be stupid and cancel the connection anyway when I have no alternative!

So, that’s my progress!

75% complete.

What about you?

2011: Leave airtel and quit Orkut

That’s my new year resolution. I have a lot against airtel and little against Orkut, but I believe doing away with both is best for the mankind. Some valid and some stupid, but yes I have reasons!

airtel:

One reason I’ve been with airtel for so many years is- I did not want to change my number. And yet, while the number portability is almost here, I did it. Got a new DoCoMo number, updated all the contacts and airtel is no longer my primary number now. When the portability comes along, it will not longer be my secondary as well (airtel, not the number. I’m thinking BSNL for a change! Let me try!)

If someone related to airtel is reading this, here are the reasons:

  • Email will be my primary mode of communication; especially with any Customer Care because no one loves to wait in queue and then talk to someone who, in most probable situation, will leave you with a case number. IF they can do it with email, kool! But, my email experiences with airtel have been bad. A sample is available here. [REF:141551117728]
  • When I wanted to get a broadband connection, I thought it would be simple with airtel for two reasons: one- the building I reside in already has multiple DSL connections, so it will be provisioned faster, two- I’ve been using airtel mobile for years, so it would be easy with proofs and documentation. They proved it wrong!
  • When I received a calendar from airtel a couple of years ago with my name on a private beach (wow!) on one side and what you see in the picture below on the other side, I felt happy. I even chose to ignore the spelling error about ‘adbuthamaina’ service. But again, it wasn’t so amazing after all! 45 days to change a bill plan?? That’s definitely not ‘adbutham’ for me. Anyway, I got it done in two weeks (which is still too much) after 14 emails (avg, 1 everyday) and one visit to the stupid ‘relationship center’. REF:2112201011501, 2112201013520, 2112201016521, 2112201018610 and 2812201022404. *Sigh!*
  • When I complained about the poor signal reception at my place, they promised to do something about it in a couple of months. That was in July 2010. Well, we are done with 2010 altogether and not even an update so far. REF:107201018403 and 107201010103.
  • A couple of ‘bill not received’ cases. Not major problems per say, as the bill was resent very shortly, but when am making a list, why not include the number? REF:32966284 and 107201010607.
  • I pay bills online. And they can’t help me when my account is locked! REF:250520109303.
  • Best of all – Calls to Customer Care 121 are no longer toll free! 😀

So, dear airtel, with all due respect to your limitations and my expectations, I hear by decide to move on. For now, just mobiles (self, mom’s and dad’s). I will try my best to find an alternate ISP and landline telephone provider very soon. Promise!

Orkut:

Where do I begin? It’s been 120 secs of Orkut every 3-4 months for the last year or so. Given that gap between login sessions, something or the other changes every time I see my Orkut page. It’s 60 secs of figuring out where the hell that scrap is. Anyway, I login only to reply to once-in-a-blue-moon scrap and get the hell out of there (not liking the system is not an excuse to ignore ‘hi’ from contacts, is it?)

If I have to mention in bullets, I have only few:

  • First and foremost is the login option. I cannot change it to another email address! So, since I changed my primary email address a long time ago, it’s been terrible effort to keep up with Orkut. Especially as it’s tied up with Google single sign on. While I am in my email and receive an invitation or scrap, clicking on that link will ask me to sign up with Orkut 🙁 So, I logout this session, login to Orkut and then complete my transaction. Or, a different browser for email and Orkut. It’s a pain in the neck I say!
  • I believe in the ‘Inbox Zero’ concept. I try to delete/ archive email in my Inbox once am done reading it, or acting upon it. Same with office Outlook setup, gmail, my personal email @viveeonline.com and SMS on my iPhone too. I’d like to do that with scraps on Orkut too! Reply and delete. But you know what? The option to delete scrap is now missing! It shows only ‘hide’. May be there is still a way to delete but who cares? I’m doing away with Orkut once for all very soon.
  • Couple of other reasons that I don’t even remember now 🙁
  • Facebook is here, it’s good and works great with SMS too along with the awesomely clean iPhone app. Why still Orkut?

So, that’s for the new year 2011 for me. Strange but valid resolution. How about yours? Any resolutions other than ‘no more resolutions’? Feel free to share in the comments!

Happy New Year! 🙂

Airtel ‘adbuthamaina’ service

One thing is confirmed – nothing comes easy for me! When I take the actual recommended route to contact any service, they throw their SLA’s away, fail to keep the promises, take no ownership of the problem/request and of course, cause a lot of frustation and inconvenience. As it is said ‘In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice, but in practice, there is.’ So, what is put on the website/ paper or promised by the representative and the actual deal always has a huge gap. When I pay to get a service, I don’t wish to compromise on anything promised to me.

But this post is about something different. Airtel, of course. You might have already read about the support experience with Airtel and the makes-no-sense address proof policy I penned down before. This one I observed right at the initial contact. I asked today (Dec 16, 2010) if they can change the bill plan for my Airtel mobile connection. Guess how many days they need to address it? Huh!

Expected Revert Time: 31/01/2011. Great!

Airtel and the proof of address

Update – 26-Oct-2010:
If you have landed here to know about Airtel’s announcement to launch 3G services in India, click here.
As per the Government of India, Department of Telecommunications Notification No.1-34/2006-VI (Pt I) dated 30-09-2009, all mobile operators are required to re-verify their subscribers for correct and complete information by 31-10-2010. If you need the list of documents accepted by Airtel, this might help a little.

I recently noted on facebook regarding the new Airtel application for broadband. Based on the few responses, it appears that Airtel has some policies and standards that make no sense [to me]. I’ve blogged about Airtel before regarding a Customer Care incident. Read the article here. This is another experience. I wonder how companies with glitches like this (also ICICI) make it to the top Innovative companies list.

Read on for this story from Airtel – my recent experience when I applied for a broadband connection. It’s not that bad to complain much or whine about; but sure is worth a mention. I just hate it when someone tries to take me for a ride. Most of the times I don’t let them do it. And when they succeed, I blog. [:P] Continue reading “Airtel and the proof of address”