That's right, I'm finally back online! After waiting for about a month to get an Internet connection in my new house, it's finally happened. So what exactly happened? Well, on the 26th March I applied to get a new Internet connection established. I also wanted to bundle it with a phone line. So as I was quite happy with Internode when I was in Canberra I decided to give them another go. So I used their online system to create the order. The system automatically placed a 2 week wait time on having a telco technician come and inspect and do the necessary things in order to establish a phone line.
Our house already has phone lines installed and wired throughout the house, but that doesn't mean they're active (apparently). So a couple of weeks after I processed the request I was expecting to get a technician to visit our house. It turns out however that we weren't going to get the technician on the 9th April, but in fact another week later on the 16th - 3 weeks to get a Telstra tech to check our phone line! Awesome (not)!
So, my wife took the Monday off to ensure that someone was home whilst the Telstra tech did his business. After he did his business, our new phone line was setup. Hurrah! However, I received no word about the Internet. I called Internode and they told me that I had to wait another 2-4 weeks before the Internet was to be connected - that's almost 2 months without Internet! I told them this was unacceptable but all of them thought this was quite reasonable in this day and age and that they would send me an email update ... hello, I don't have Internet so the only way I'm going to get it is if I'm borrowing someone else's (e.g. Work, Maccas) or using my crappy Nokia N95. People just assume you have the Internet all the time it seems, even when your ISP isn't providing it to you.
People don't realise how dependent we are on the Internet nowadays. Over the month I remember going to Bunnings to ask for advice on how to fix a toilet in our new house. The young store attendants said they weren't sure and told us to "just Google it". Under normal circumstances, I would, but I had no Internet. When you want to search for opening times, phone numbers, locations and stock of stores, you do it all through the Internet nowadays. All businesses prefer using emails as a way of notifying you of status updates - even Internode who knew we didn't have Internet setup was sending us email updates. And this doesn't even take into account the gaming side when it comes to a lack of Internet.
Obviously, any multiplayer games, like Battlefield 3 cannot be played at all without an Internet connection. Even some single player games require you to be online for authentication and for those that don't some require you to be online in order to register achievements. And of course, most IT and gaming news never shows up in physical newspapers, but online.
Anyway, Internode came with a workaround which meant we had to sign up to a dearer plan and have only a 5GB quota per month instead of 30GB. This would reduce the waiting time to only a few extra days instead of weeks (something to do with which DSLAM/exchange you're using I suspect). So there you have it, there's my little rant. I can tell you I'm not too impressed with Internode at the moment - but there's not really much competition for the price you're paying, except maybe for iiNet. Amcom is comparable in price but requires a 24 month contract and Telstra's the same (with an even dearer internet plan).