Excitel Review: Cheap but Frustrating Experience

0

Airtel Xstream and Reliance JioFibre seem to be the most popular broadband providers in major cities across India. But if there’s one internet service provider (ISP) that’s growing really fast across the country, it’s Excitel. The company emerged as a local ISP player initially focusing on niche markets, but now has footprints in around 33 cities. Excitel recently raised $11.5 in equity and aims to expand to 100 cities across India by the end of 2022. As for the user base, Excitel wants to grow from 0.7 million to 10 millions.

But with this major expansion ambition, the big question arises: are they able to provide reliable service to their existing customers? Well, that’s where you’ll get a mixed response. For some users it’s fine, but many are frustrated with the reliability of the internet connection and not to mention the lengthy process of getting the refund of Rs 2,000 for the security amount that new subscribers are supposed to pay for the modem initially.

After being an Excitel subscriber in South Delhi for 15 months, here is the review of Excitel Broadband in Delhi.

Excitel Broadband Internet Plans and Speeds

Excitel has a smart approach to attracting new customers. They examine service areas where Airtel, Jio and other competitors have not penetrated with high-speed fiber internet connectivity while offering value-for-money long-term plans. Excitel plans are for a minimum of 3 months with speeds of 200 Mbps. Shoppers can also check out premium plans with speeds of up to 400 Mbps.

When you compare Excitel’s broadband packages with Jio, Airtel and others, you’ll quickly notice that Excitel has an affordable package overall and they tend to make the package more enjoyable initially to acquire new customers by adding free months to the plan.

On paper, the plans look very attractive and you get the reliability of a local friendly ISP. Speaking of speeds, the 200 Mbps, 300 Mbps or 400 Mbps promised by Excitel are the peak speeds. This means that average speeds will of course be lower and only sometimes you will get top speeds. This applies to most ISPs in the market. But note that sometimes speeds can drop drastically for no reason and if you call customer support you will be prompted to do a SpeedTest.

As for the speed, it depends a lot on the region you are staying in. For example, while I get decent speeds at home, a friend of mine who lives just five minutes from my house is having trouble watching content on TV.

As for the speed, it depends a lot on the region you are staying in. For example, while I get decent speeds at home, a friend of mine who lives just five minutes from my house is having trouble watching content on TV.

Excitel has its agents in the field who serve customers. These agents have their areas divided to cater to different subscribers. So when it comes to speed and service issues, a lot depends on how efficient your agent is in the field. If your agent isn’t responsive enough, you’re left at the mercy of customer service. There’s not much you can do if your internet stops working, other than pray that customer service actually pushes someone to do something.

Is Excitel Broadband Internet reliable?

This is where opinions will diverge. As mentioned before, a lot depends on your location and your agent in the field. But it’s safe to say that when the internet is working well, it’s a good day for you. But when it doesn’t, you can end up with an inactive internet connection for a day or more. Yes, they refund an extra day in your data plan for free if there’s a 24-hour downtime, but will you be comfortable with frequent loss of connectivity and sudden drop in speeds?

It all depends on your location and your agent in the field.

From my experience of using Excitel for 15 months, I would agree that it offered great connectivity to start with. However, the connectivity issues started when my local agent left Excitel and moved to a competing ISP. It used to be that if there were any issues I could speak directly to my Excitel agent to get things fixed, but now I’m at the mercy of customer service. Lately there’s been a serious connectivity issue where I’m left without internet all day only to be greeted with a random message from customer service.

Last month there were 6 days I had to work with my mobile hotspot and this month I am writing this review while connected to my Airtel 4G mobile data connection – wondering how much downtime I will face this month and how many times I will have to speak to the customer service team. But not to sound biased, because my friend who stays 5 minutes from my house has a decent experience.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=/Vj5e6cEoTRo

How is Excitel Broadband Internet customer service?

If you are lucky enough to have a good Excitel agent in the field, you will have nothing to do with the customer service team. But if you’re unlucky like me, whose agent decides to switch companies halfway through without giving the contact details of the next agent, then the only point of contact you’ll have is through the ‘myExcitel’ app. It is through this application that you have to issue a service request and then wait for someone from the customer service team to call you back. If you miss their call, good luck. Customer service speaks like an automated voicemail that will immediately tell you to turn off your modem and turn it back on after a minute. And then they claim to “refresh your network” from the backend. If it works great, otherwise you will receive a service request which may take up to 48 hours to resolve. By the way, you must first have an active mobile data plan to contact the customer service team via the myExcitel app. So, as a backup, always have another secondary source from the internet.

Customer service speaks like an automated voicemail that will immediately tell you to turn off your modem and turn it back on after a minute.

Excitel security deposit refund: 3 months of major frustration

Now, if you’re not happy with Excitel’s service, you’ll probably want to close the connection and request a refund of the security deposit. Excitel has a 90 day refund policy. This means that after depositing the modem safely, you will have to wait 90 days to get the refund to your bank account. To submit the modem, you will need to physically go to the nearest Excitel office and obtain a disconnection receipt, then your refund process will begin. There is also paperwork. Excitel has made the refund process so frustrating for the end user that many would simply move on without claiming the refund.

When purchasing a new connection, the Excitel agent will gladly visit you as many times as necessary. But when it comes to disconnecting, you’re on your own.

Recently, Excitel got rid of the refund process completely and now customers have to buy a 3 month plan to start and pay an extra Rs 500 for cabling. That said, old subscribers will be able to get the refund when they log out, but the painful process remains.

Recently, Excitel got rid of the refund process completely and now customers have to buy a 3 month plan to start and pay an extra Rs 500 for cabling.

Excitel Broadband Review Verdict

It’s good to see new ISPs growing and offering internet services at competitive rates. More competition is always good for end users. For Excitel to really strengthen its presence in India and compete with leaders like Jio and Airtel, they need to seriously focus on service reliability, which is lacking. The last thing Excitel would want is to avoid existing customers while attracting new ones to expand in India.

Read all Latest technical news here

Share.

About Author

Comments are closed.