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A rant about Sky!

LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

A rant about Sky!

Does anyone else think this is unfair?
I am moving into a new flat on Saturday so have been preparing to get myself all setup with the relevant utilities etc...  Telephone, Broadband, TV etc.. etc..
Anyway, I want Sky.  I have it at home now but it'll be staying there so need to signup as a new customer at the new address.
The building is brand new virtually so all the flats have 2 Sky outlets wired directly to a socket in the living room.  "Great!" I thought, "Surely they can just send me a box and let me plug it straight in".  Errrr... no!
Anyway, I go to the Sky website, browse around and look at placing an order.  I find the package and offer that I want and proceed to order.  However, because I live in a communal block, I can't order directly from Sky, nor can I sign up in any of the shops that sell Sky etc... 
So, I give Sky a call.  Turns out my only option is to use Sky's subcontracted installer for my area.  They put me in touch with the local installation company for Exeter.  Before they can even tell me who it is they "insist" on taking my name and mobile number.  I ask them not to put me through and not to have them call me.  I tell them I'll give the installers a call in the next couple of days.
Well, 10 minutes later I get a call from the installers anyway - company called "Grove Digital".  Guess they didn't listen to me when I asked them not to get them to call me but as I had them on the phone I asked them the relevant questions anyway.
Turns out that if I deal direct with the installers I cant get the special "new customer" discounts that Sky give to customers who sign up via the website.  I have to pay full price for the installation and full price for the Sky Plus box.  That is, unless I take both their Sky Broadband (no thanks!) AND their Sky Talk package (no thanks!).
I think it's pretty unfair that just because I live in a block of flats I can't get the same deals as other new customers.  It's fair enough that you have to call them to talk to someone about getting it installed in a flat - I can kind of understand them wanting to confirm details with you on the phone.  I can even just about get my head around the fact they insist on sending an installer just to plug it in and press a few buttons - just in case I messed up the installation or couldn't figure out how to do it.  But I don't think it's fair I have to pay the full price when someone who lives in a house (and where the installer will have to do a lot more work anyway - i.e. mounting the dish!) gets a discount on installation and a reduced price sky box for "ordering online".
Unfortunately Virgin Media TV isn't available in this particular part of the city (Exeter) so I'm stuck with their stupid rules.  Would be interested to hear others' thoughts though.
/rant
13 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,378
Thanks: 634
Fixes: 8
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

Get a digi-box!
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
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LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

I wonder if it is possible for me to buy a Sky+ box on eBay, take it with me, plug it in and have it working and THEN ring Sky to enquire about becoming a subscriber?
LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

Just spoke to someone at Sky.  He did apologise for my disappointment but said "unfortunately that's the way it is".  Online offers are only available online and as I can't order online, I can't get the online offer.
However, he did give me another way to do it (and actually a better one!).  He told me to get someone I know who has Sky (i.e. my parents) to go online and generate a code to "Recommend A Friend".  If I do that, and I call the "Recommend A Friend" signup number and give them the code, then I'll actually get a FREE Sky+ box, which is a better price than the online offer (£99).
So, I'll give that a go :-)
LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

Hmmm... I don't see that offer myself :-
http://friend.sky.com/
N/A

Re: A rant about Sky!

Can't see that offer either (also logged in to see if it was different - its not!)
Any danger that they can move your current contract (from parents house) to your new house, and then have your parents sign up again for a new contract, taking advantage of recommend a friend (vouchers) and free installation offers/online packages etc?
LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

It would be complicated since there would be downtime involved at the parents' end and the recommend a friend offer isn't available to existing customers or customers that have left within recent x months.  Otherwise, nice idea.
Alternative would be to get it installed somewhere and then just 'move'.  If you move it yourself and plug yourself in all they have to do is change your details AFAIK.
paulby
Grafter
Posts: 1,619
Registered: 26-07-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

I bought my SKy+ box from Simply Digital and then phoned Sky to get a viewing card.  The box will work without a viewing card for all the free to air channels (icluding BBC channels) until yours arrives.
LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

Do you get the subscription channels then?  i.e. you have a subscription?
Did they offer you any specials?
paulby
Grafter
Posts: 1,619
Registered: 26-07-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

Signed up for a normal subscription minus Sport & Movies (don't have time to watch those with a toddler and a newborn!).  They didn't give me any specials - but then I didn't ask!
Buying my own box made sense at the time as Sky wanted £199 to install it.  It was fairly easy to change the LNB and add the extra wiring myself.  However, if you're place is pre-wired, you won't have that problem!
LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

Do you know if those boxes on Simply Digital are the latest versions?
EDIT: Also, if you just call up for the viewing card do they still tie you into 12 months?
paulby
Grafter
Posts: 1,619
Registered: 26-07-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

Mine was the latest box at the time!
The Pace TDS470N is what Sky are using currently for new installs.  It's got a 160GB hard disc fitted but Sky restrict you to using only 80GB (that's the 80GB that's quoted on the site) - they use the other 80GB for "Anytime TV".
I was tied in for twelve months because, at the time, a Sky+ subscription had to be taken for that period and cost £10/month on top of your package.  Things have changed since then and Sky+ is now "free".  You'd probably best ask them about minimum contract periods!
LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

Just called them as if I had the box already and they said I'd need to commit to 12 months, but that I could downgrade to the lowest package if necessary.  I think this is a better option than having an installation anyway. But I might see if I can try the free box offer first!
Cheers for your advice, Paul.
LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: A rant about Sky!

Well, all is well that ends well.
Sky have been advertising their "Free Sky+ Box for you and a friend when you recommend Sky" offer on TV all weekend so I've just called up (recommended by my parents) to order.  Was offered free Sky+ Box and free installation.  Commit for 12 months (which i'd have to do anyway even if I bought the kit elsewhere).
But, I asked if they would do a deal and let me pay any extra for Sky HD.  To which he went off, spoke to his supervisor and came back saying he could do SKY HD Box and installation for £99.  So I went for that.  Not bad I don't think since they charge existing customers £249 for it without installation.
Engineer is coming on Wednesday.