Can AT&T fiber with Sonic really be that bad?

Internet access discussion, including Fusion, IP Broadband, and Gigabit Fiber!
7 posts Page 1 of 1
by himself » Wed Sep 04, 2019 6:46 pm
A few months ago AT&T came out and pulled fiber to the neighborhood connection box outside my house, on the street. Last month I was notified that I can sign up for fiber service. Sonic's availability tool shows it being available. Dandy, says I, I can finally get off DSL!

Then I sat down and read the posts in the Access forum. These poor people! One guy in Daly City seems to have been stood up by the installer at least half a dozen times! Three orders of magnitude better uplink speeds would be great, but is it really worth it?

Also, what does it entail? My DSL line terminates on the side of my house; there's a phone line pulled through the walls to my office, where the jack is. But I understand the fiber install requires a powered inside termination point. Can that fiber-to-copper active termination also be in the same place? That is, can the fiber be pulled through the various kinks and crannies that the phone line goes through?
by kyle.depasquale » Thu Sep 05, 2019 8:54 am
Keep in mind that folks come here when they have issues far more often than when things go well. While I do know that there have been some growing pains with fiber deployment for both Sonic and AT&T, I'd venture to say most folks aren't getting stood up by their installers that often.

Not sure if it's the same team of installers, but for my personal installation anecdote, I recently moved and needed AT&T to install a new line for my resold FTTN Sonic service, and they came earlier than anticipated and completed the job really quickly, even though they had to unexpectedly call out a separate bucket truck.
by apl » Thu Sep 05, 2019 11:02 am
Yes, experiences can differ quite a bit.

I had the Sonic/ATT fiber installed in March, and the installer was on time, friendly, and competent. When he couldn't get it working immediately (I was the first on my block to get ATT fiber, and there was some wiring problem at the terminal), we traded cell phone numbers and he texted me a few hours later (after 5 PM) when they fixed that problem to make sure that the service was working on my end.

I would still prefer to have Sonic's own fiber, for a few reasons, but that's not available to me and won't be for the foreseeable future. The resold ATT product is a huge improvement over DSL at almost the same price (a few bucks more because you can't opt out of the equipment rental).

As for the technical aspect, fiber may not be able to handle bends as sharp as copper wire can, but it's find with 90 degree turns, so going through a wall and running along edges of walls/floors/ceilings works fine. They'll likely be able to find a way to make yours work.
by cliberti » Thu Sep 05, 2019 4:19 pm
For us not too bad. Took 3 weeks to get an appointment but installer came out around noon on a 8-4 window. Installed it. Only issues was time it took (close to 6 hours) and her lack of skill. She couldn't test the speed because she didn't know how so left without testing the line speed and when she couldn't test she tried convincing me I only needed 100mb
by gtwrek » Fri Sep 06, 2019 11:02 am
Regarding the physical setup. I recommend (with any installer) having a good idea in your head of how you want things routed, and where boxes are installed before the installer arrives.

For the fiber product, the fiber termination box is an externally mountable box (i.e. protected from the elements). However, its power supply (a separate box with a battery) is not externally mountable. And the power supply requires, well, a power plug.

Some installs are able to terminate the fiber outside, but mount the power supply somewhere inside, nearby, and just route the power connector to the fiber termination. Other installs put both boxes inside - requiring the fiber to be routed inside your home too (which is ok).

After the fiber termination, it's Cat5 to the Pace/other more traditional router (all inside appliances only).

For me, I wish I understood the need for power supply, and some sort of protection from the elements for the fiber power supply. As it was, for my install, I wasn't happy with the options the installer was suggesting. I convinced him to allow a sort of temporary setup with a long external utility power cord. After he left I built a small, rugged cabinet (with power) that I installed on the wall near the fiber termination, and moved the fiber power supply there.
by bmah » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:26 pm
My install of AT&T fiber last year was pretty much that I can barely remember any details about it.

The only notable thing I remember was that the technician was a no-show on the first appointment date, but I gave them a pass on that because of the torrential rain we had that day. Second date was a week later and a technician showed up on time and got the job done right the first time.

As someone upthread noted, it's very useful to have things planned out where you have or want equipment. The point of entry of the fiber into your house may not be the same place where your telephone enters. In my case it was through an exterior wall, on the opposite end of the house, but that's fine because it wound up very close to where all my networking gear is.

by johncroscigno » Tue Sep 17, 2019 9:25 am
I had attempted to have AT&T fiber service installed directly 3 times before going with Sonic; my experience went something like this:
1) ordered online - technician arrived two weeks later saying that he was dispatched for a condo, not an apartment, and couldn't install, promptly left
2) tried to fix order online, couldn't, so spent an hour on the phone to find out my address was incorrectly stored in AT&T's system and couldn't be adjusted without a physical drive-by; never received follow up so cancelled the order
3) attempted a second order and had a technician arrive, found out that AT&T couldn't get access to the yards of my neighbors to run the line, so he left
4) AT&T started sending me helpful "pre-bill" info before my service was active, and showed that the taxes and fees on my service would be upwards of $30 - brining the $72/month advertised order to over $100 (and somehow my mobile bill was getting more expensive in the process too)
5) attempted to reschedule the installation after speaking with neighbors, AT&T wouldn't accomodate the date I provided, called the next morning (unscheduled) to provide installation when I wasn't available - cancelled the order

Finally went with Sonic - AT&T showed up when they were supposed to, to install the AT&T fiber, and as far as it seems on my end, I'm technically receiving AT&T fiber (100/100) - but I'm paying a subscription to Sonic (good), have no data cap (good), and didn't have to pay for the installation (good), and it's cheaper (great)

I'm MORE than happy to have Sonic compared to AT&T in the long-run, eve, if AT&T is technically the provider
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