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Old October 4, 2017, 03:50 PM
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Default Vmedia IPTV Review

A month or so ago, I noticed a very good promotional offer from Vmedia and decided that I would, out of my own pocket, sign up for this promo and do a review of Vmedia services.

It did not start out so well. My first attempt, I spent a few hours trying to process an order through their website. I could never make it past a certain point because of a glitch in their ordering process. I sent in a ticket, tried to sign up on their forums (which you cannot do unless you are a confirmed customer, and even then, your account will only be activated on your install date) and tried their online chat support. I even had difficulty getting to their online chat support as apparently the bug that was keeping me from continuing the ordering process was also telling me that chat support was closed. It wasn’t until I clicked back to the homepage that I could navigate my way back to the online chat support option and proceed.

Online chat support was less than helpful. I had to repeat myself several times and while they had the ability to process my order manually, they couldn’t quite understand that I wanted to process it online. We ended the chat with a promise of a callback the next day. I emailed Georg Burger with the problems I was facing in great detail as well.

I will say that this is where Vmedia shines. I not only received a callback and email the next day as a result of my online chat session and online ticket submission but I also received emails and a callback from Matt in regards to me reaching out to Mr. Burger.

It did take some time and cooperation but eventually we were able to connect and had a couple of teamviewer/skype sessions to narrow down and remediate the website glitches within the ordering process. Matt and the Vmedia team as a whole was very eager to investigate and fix these issues. I was very impressed with the level of urgency and importance that was placed.

After some discussion, it was decided that I would be given a one month free trial to review Vmedia’s products and services. I know that I typically have a reputation of being pro-Zazeen by some, however, in reality I am pro-Canadian Consumer. While it is true that I have a healthy distaste for Incumbent providers, I also will always provide a fair and balanced review. If a product offering is good, I will definitely champion it. If that happens to be an Independent offering, I will shout from the rooftops as many of you have seen me do with Zazeen. It is my hope to be able to do the same with Vmedia here.

The ordering process with Matt was painless. I have an install date and received multiple automated emails from Vmedia informing me of the date and time, equipment shipment, account info, etc. All of the normal things you would expect when you place an order. There is nothing really to report here. All standard practice.
EDIT1:
I received my equipment today. I was impressed at the branding on the boxes but I did have to wonder to myself that instead of spending that money on marketing, as an independent provider, perhaps those funds could have been more equitably dispersed in other areas of the company. We all know, and have heard Mr. Burger state several times that budgetary constraints are a main protagonist of IISP’s, so this left me quite conflicted. It does look very professional—even moreso than the Incumbents and leaves a very good first impression, I personally believe the marketing budget could take a hit and those funds would be better invested elsewhere.

Here are my unboxing pics:

https://www.photosnack.com/rednekcow...equipment.html

EDIT2:

The tech came on the install date and within the allotted time for the install. I won’t say much about the install as it’s typical of any IISP and completely out of Vmedia’s control whatsoever.

I was not intending on writing anything at all about the installation process, however there were issues—not on the Bell tech’s part but on Vmedia’s end with the autoconfiguration process they have with their modems.

I was getting line sync, good line stats but no internet access. I informed Matt of this and he informed me they needed to submit a Bell ticket to resolve. It was only after I forced the issue and kept asking questions and manually reconfigured the modem that the connection actually worked. This was 24 hours after the initial install. While Matt was very responsive, especially seeing it was a weekend, there really was no need for this delay.

I finally got to the point where I could setup the Vbox and actually review the service. Please keep in mind that I am viewing this on a 65” 4k tv so minor blemishes show front and center and are very prominent whereas on a smaller set, they may not be as noticeable. I do have to be honest and say that what I saw was disappointing. I do have to give kudos for broadcasting 5.1 audio, which is something Zazeen doesn't do, however picture quality is severely lacking compared to any other provider out there.
I spent some time watching different programs on different channels and Vmedia’s “HD” channels are at best SD. Pixelation, artifacts, drop outs, audio sync issues, etc etc are all very prevalent across the board. Forget about watching sports or anything with lots of action or movement on the screen as it just becomes one big blur. Both hockey and football on TSN and Sportsnet, in my opinion, are completely unwatchable.

I again emailed both George and Matt of my findings, thinking that perhaps there was an issue with my dsl connection. I get a reply from George that was actually meant for Matt saying he is going to “fire me immediately,” as in terminate the trial. I’ve pastied the whole chain here, including my attempts to reach out to resolve/understand that statement which go unanswered up to the point of Vmedia sending me notice that they are terminating the trial and demanding their equipment back.

Here is the pastie of the chain as well as a pastie of their termination notice after my repeated attempts at reaching out to them once George conducted his bluder:

https://pastebin.com/0Kh06h6R
https://pastebin.com/8sdYR9xE

The end result? I didn’t get to do as complete a review as I would have liked. I wanted to test apps, test out the reports of throttling, monitor bandwidth consumption used, test out the PVR. Unfortunately, George decided to allow his paranoia to kick in and, as a direct result of his own incompetent emailing skills, thwarted yet another attempt at someone trying to assist Vmedia in giving them some much needed positive publicity. What he has now down, again through no one’s fault but his own, has created another very public, very negative situation for Vmedia.

Final thoughts? Vmedia has a lot of work to do, even compared to their next closest rival Zazeen. They are miles behind any incumbent in terms of stability or quality. All of this can be easily overcome through time and investment and proper use of their funding.
Last but not least, George Burger. I’ve said this since the beginning and it’s illustrated in this interaction very well. George is not the person to be involved with this company in any sort of public facing role or management role whatsoever. He needs to stick to what he’s good at and allow someone who is competent enough and has the requisite background and experience to be the Director of Vmedia. That is not a dig at Mr. Burger, it is my opinion as someone who now has first hand with his product and his interactions with customers.

Last edited by rednekcowboy; October 4, 2017 at 04:13 PM.
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Old October 4, 2017, 04:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rednekcowboy View Post
As many of you may know, I’ve been an avid Zazeen supporter and many of you have seen the battles between myself and George on these very forums.
Uhhh 'as many of you know', you have one forum post. We definitely don't know. Possible wrong forum post, or a really clumsy Zazeen ad posing as a post? (Or just a very random first post?)

This is just odd....
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Old October 4, 2017, 04:12 PM
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Originally Posted by FreeKnight View Post
Uhhh 'as many of you know', you have one forum post. We definitely don't know. Possible wrong forum post, or a really clumsy Zazeen ad posing as a post? (Or just a very random first post?)

This is just odd....
It's just a copy paste of my review on DSLR. I will remove that portion here as you are correct, it doesn't make sense.

As far as it being some sort of Zazeen ad bot. I would suggest, you click the links and the pasties. It definitely is legit lol.

EDIT: Fixed it for you. Are you happy now?
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Old October 4, 2017, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by rednekcowboy View Post
It's just a copy paste of my review on DSLR. I will remove that portion here as you are correct, it doesn't make sense.

As far as it being some sort of Zazeen ad bot. I would suggest, you click the links and the pasties. It definitely is legit lol.

EDIT: Fixed it for you. Are you happy now?
No worries. I didn't really think it was a Zazeen ad, it's a bit too lengthy for that :D

Makes a bit more sense now. Welcome to the forum!
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Old October 4, 2017, 04:38 PM
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I'm going to allow this for now...but I'm also on DSLR and I've seen what transpires from most of those threads...

I too have been a user of both VMedia (some free portions) and Zazeen (entirely free), and IMO, VMedia is the worst, but Zazeen wasn't all sunshine and rainbows either.

I'm honestly surprised they let you have a free trial, that's some good faith there at least, but they definitely do not seem open to taking constructive criticism. I tried countless times too, though I did the same with Paul @ Zazeen and didn't get anywhere either. At least Paul never sent any unprofessional messages like George did.

Either way, both companies are in their infancy and have a lot of work to do. Likewise, their pricing isn't exactly competitive these days either with all the promotions you can get from Bell/Rogers/etc, assuming you're fine with swapping providers every 1-2 years.

I see Comwave has IPTV now too - is that something you're going to try as well? I've been thinking about it...

I'm still patiently waiting for Start TV and eBox TV though. They are decent businesses right now on the Internet side, so hopefully their TV products follow suit.
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Old October 4, 2017, 04:46 PM
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I've been thinking of trying Comwave, might give it a go.

As for Zazeen, yes I agree that they have work to do but have come a long way since your side-by-side.

I tried to separate this review completely as I didn't want a comparison of the two services because of my history with George but at the same time, I don't want someone simply writing off Zazeen because of a poor review of Vmedia. At this time, I would say Zazeen is a viable alternative to the Incumbents (though they need to implement 5.1 sound) whereas Vmedia definitely is not.

I have a different experience with Paul than you did, though he can be difficult to reach at times. I do have other contacts that are very responsive within the organization.

I did reach out, as illustrated in the pasties, every step of the way. Even after the termination email they sent, I reached out once more to ask them to reconsider because I wanted to write a positive review for them. That email was completely ignored.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeKnight View Post
No worries. I didn't really think it was a Zazeen ad, it's a bit too lengthy for that :D

Makes a bit more sense now. Welcome to the forum!
Sorry for the length but I wanted to be thorough and completely open so that nothing was left to refute in my account of the events as they transpired.
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Old October 4, 2017, 05:17 PM
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Would be curious to see your thoughts if you do give Comwave a shot. They seem a bit sketchy as a company though, thus my reluctance to try. I have far more respect/faith in Start & EBox.

I'm currently running FibeTV - but that contract is up in February, so the hunt begins once again.
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Old October 4, 2017, 05:32 PM
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Would be curious to see your thoughts if you do give Comwave a shot. They seem a bit sketchy as a company though, thus my reluctance to try. I have far more respect/faith in Start & EBox.

I'm currently running FibeTV - but that contract is up in February, so the hunt begins once again.
If they give me a free trial, I'll review anyone lol.

That being said, I wonder who they are reselling. I don't think they actually setup their own shop like vmedia/zazeen.

You should check out Zazeen again. They fixed issues with sports,etc. They now transmit at 60fps and use anywhere from 8-11Mpbs (as it's variable) compared to the 4-6mbps for regular hd channels.

I wish I would have gotten a chance to monitor the bandwidth consumption on Vmedia. I would have to guess it's about 2-3Mbps across the board.
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Old October 5, 2017, 01:45 AM
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Why can't we get a service where I get only the channels I want, no STB required, a software app on PC, with PVR function, and that will work regardless of ISP?
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Old October 5, 2017, 02:30 AM
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Because Bell, Rogers, etc own all the rights to all the channels and can dictate how, where and when they are delivered at what cost. Ain't vertical integration great??
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