This is the entire transcript of my chat with Verizon customer service this afternoon. I called to see if I could upgrade my internet service to something that could handle walking and chewing gum at the same time. I have to leave large downloads overnight. This is in Brooklyn, NY. Not Timbuktu (no offense Mali). How is forcing people to sign up for a house phone still a viable business model in the United States. In 2013.

I never thought I’d be in a situation where I was wishing I was back in Uganda enjoying faster internet service.

Chat Subject: Slow Throughput

Your Question: The internet doesn’t work. Can I cancel or get a faster service?

A Verizon Service Representative will be with you shortly. Thank you.

Agent Arnita has joined.

Arnita : Chat ID for this session is 0520002207.

Arnita: Thank you for contacting Verizon HSI Technical Support. My name is Arnita and I am the technical support analyst assigned to help you. Please stay online for a few moments while I review the information generated by your trouble ticket.

Teddy: thanks

Arnita: Thank you for staying online. I appreciate your patience.

Arnita: I understand your concern and I will assist you with the issue. For verification, please provide the following information before we start:

– The first and last name of the account holder and your relationship with him/her.

Arnita: Please respond.

Teddy: hello I am here

Teddy: Teddy

Arnita: As I understand,you want to check if you can upgrade the speed.

Teddy: Yes, this speed is pretty much unusable

Teddy: might as well cancel it if this is what I get

Arnita: I understand your concern and I will be happy to help you.

Arnita: I have checked and you can upgrade your speed plan.

Arnita: Would you like to upgrade now?

Teddy: Sure, what are my options?

Arnita: Let me connect you to the Billing department. Please stay connected.

This session is being transferred.

This session is transferred to Stephen.

Agent Stephen has joined.

Stephen: Hello. Thank you for choosing Verizon and visiting our chat service. I will be happy to help you today.

For quality & security purposes, your session is recorded and may be monitored or reviewed. Please do not provide sensitive information such as social security, bank account or credit card numbers. May we view your account information, including the services you subscribe to, so that we may assist you during this chat with respect to available Verizon products and services? You may deny us permission, which will have no effect on your current services. Under federal law, it is your right and our duty to protect your account information.

May I have permission to review your account?

Stephen: I apologize for the trouble you are having with Verizon’s website.

Teddy: Sure

Stephen: To completely secure the account I must get a temporary pin to you. I can send this pin thru a phone call to the house # only and/or send it thru the US mail. Are you at the house phone number now?

Stephen: Can you sign in ok?

Teddy: we don’t have a house phone

Teddy: haven’t had one in years

Teddy: where are you guys from, 1994?

Teddy: Can’t I just call customer service? what’s the number?

Teddy: hello?

Stephen: What is the account number please?

Teddy: xxx xxxxxx xxx xxx

Stephen: Thanks

Stephen: Let me look

Stephen: Yes there is a faster internet speed, however, you cannot increase the internet speed unless you add a phone line to the account.

Stephen: The speed you have now is .5 up to 1.0 Mbps

Teddy: you guys can’t be serious

Stephen: the hghest speed available is 1.1 up to 3.0Mbps

Teddy: you are still forcing people to get a land line?

Stephen: Yes. Your current plan is grandfathered in.

Stephen: But cannot be changed unless a phone line is added.

Teddy: what does that mean?

Stephen: Sorry about the inconvenience.

Stephen: Add a line and you can then upgrade the speed.

Stephen: $44.99 is the price for Regional phone and internet speed of 1.1 up to 3.0Mbps

Teddy: then I’d just like to cancel my service

Stephen: I am sorry you feel that way.

Stephen: I am sorry to hear that you wish to cancel your service. I do apologize, but you are not able to place an order on line to disconnect your service and I am also unable to assist you with this issue through chat.

In order to fulfill your request for the disconnection of your service, please contact our Consumer Sales and Solutions Center directly at: (800) VERIZON or (800) 837-4966 Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8:00 AM and 7:00 PM.

Stephen: Our representatives will be happy to help you.

Teddy: It’s 2013 and your best business model is to force customers to sign up for a land line in order to get faster services? Wow! I get faster and cheaper service in Uganda.

Teddy: Thanks for your time, will contact them immediately

Stephen(15:55:50): Ok, and again I apologize.

Stephen(15:55:55): Thank you for choosing Verizon, we appreciate your business. The department to which we have referred you will be able to assist you. If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact us again.

Your session is now closed.

Thank you, have a nice day.