AT&T has launched a "Geek Squad meets Fire Dog" IT service called AT&T ConnecTech. The company told USA Today that ConnecTech will provide home technical services in all 50 states: Home networking. Household tech support. Home theater installation. Having dealt with AT&T's "We don't have to — we're the phone company" attitude for years, I predict ConnecTech will be more like "Geek Squad meets the DMV."AT&T is already huge provider of telco and IT services to small business. Its track record is one of notoriously complex business processes that get in the way. If you schedule a "turn-up" to activate a new T1 line, you'll learn more than you want about AT&T internal politics. If your onsite technician doesn't show, your attempt to track him down gets ping-ponged around AT&T's org chart. Could be he has the wrong phone number or address. Could be he checked you off as done and took a vaca, as happened to Valleywag editor Paul Boutin's home-office installation. To AT&T, it's your problem. "Sorry, we have no available slots to reschedule until next week." Want to get a reverse DNS record created, so you can send mail to EarthLink and Comcast without being spam-filtered? AT&T's answer: We can't do that unless we take over your DNS hosting entirely. I don't expect the company's attempt to expand into home service to change its corporate culture. Instead, I pity ConnecTech's frontline support people. God help them when they try to explain AT&T bureaucracy to people who've been spoiled by FedEx.
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