Complaint / review text:
Oceanic Time Warner Cable does not offer RoadRunner Internet service on Molokai. The Molokai offering, WAVE, is a substandard service of very low dependability. The only thing the Molokai WAVE service has in common with the RoadRunner service on other islands is monthly cost. A Broadband alternative to Oceanic WAVE service is unavailable to many Molokai customers. Oceanic is abusing its monopoly position charging RoadRunner rates for substandard WAVE service on Molokai.
We pay the RoadRunner Internet rate for WAVE Plus but receive only half the "Up To" speeds of RoadRunner.
RoadRunner: 10 Mbps download and 1 Mbps upload speeds
WAVE Plus: 5 Mbps download and 0.35 Mbps upload speeds
The "Up To" speeds are available only at times of low demand. The service deteriorates during the day.in the evenings, download speeds from the San Jose SpeedTest.net site the Oceanic Technicians use on Service Calls frequently drops to download speeds in the low 1Mbps. When I call Tech Support, they agree all my stuff is working fine. The problem is a known issue, limited bandwidth for the Molokai customers currently using the system. When asked if the problem is being addressed, I get the response they are looking into it and could do something this year. They can adjust the bill for the poor service but seem little interested in fixing the problem.
A February 2011 letter from Oceanic stated service in Hawaii would be upgraded to 10 Mbps download and 1 Mbps upload speeds during the year. Also, a rate increase was granted for the upgrade of service. Rates for Molokai Internet service increased $5/mo March 2011. Another rate increase is just months away.
WAVE service on Molokai was not upgraded and is not scheduled for upgrade. Customers using WAVE on Molokai should not pay for an upgrade they did not and will not receive.
So that's the skinny - WAVE on Molokai is substandard, they know it is substandard but happily charge RoadRunner rates. They may formulate a plan for upgrade before Global Warming raises the sea level sufficiently to inundate the island and make the effort unnecessary.
UPDATE: 25 March 2013
Last August, the Oceanic President Bob Barlow told THE DISPATCH cable service on Molokai would be changing soon. "We are updating microwave to both Molokai and Lanai and that will remedy some of the issues that we've been having, " said Barlow. "I'm confident they'll be done by the end of the year." He went on to say service on Molokai would still not match service on the other islands until a fiber optic cable replaced the current microwave. He predicted that would happen within six months.
Well, new year and six months have passed - we are still being ripped off.
Still on the same rickety old microwave. No fiber in the cards. They did add 3 system modem controllers to the 3 we had so the inadequate bandwidth is more evenly distributed. My evening Kilobit per second downloads have jumped all the way into the 1Mbps range. Golly, they are even better than dialup now.
There seems to be a leaky splice somewhere. For the past month my Transmit power level spikes into the 60s and the modem goes down 4-5 times a day. My complaint today received an, "I'll have the Foreman call you." from the customer service rep. Not holding my breath, I've not received a call back yet from any of the assurances of Oceanic's commitment to service.
Oceanic HAS spent money on the Molokai system, not to fix the known bandwidth problem but to make it even worse. They added service to some large areas on the west end and all three Kawela Plantation subdivisions. Recently, they added Kalaupapa service. More customers (revenue) using an already inadequate system. No upgrade of the microwave feeding the Molokai system has been made, better service doesn't generate more revenue.
The latest FCC report on broadband has Time Warner Cable nationwide providing better than 90% of the stated "up to" speed during prime time evenings. Our "up to" of 5Mbps is only half of the RoadRunner on the other
Islands but we pay the same price per month. Even accepting our lower rate, 90% would be 4.5Mbps. I'm lucky to get 25% of the "up to" WAVE speed in the evenings.
Interesting - Oceanic pays a franchise fee of 39 cents of every revenue dollar for RoadRunner service. The WAVE system is not subject to the franchise fee so Oceanic the whole dollar. Would think that would more than offset the higher cost of our more rural infrastructure.