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Internet Heaven or Hell: Showing at a Cybercafe near you!
For most of us the cyber café is our access door to the Internet. If the services of cyber café you use are bad, your Net experiences will not be pleasant. Internet Hell! I salute all those who have had to go through horrors just to send simple e-mails.
At the same time not all cyber cafés are terrible. Some offer very good service and this is reflected in a high level of customer loyalty. Internet Heaven! What should we reasonably expect from a cyber café when we go to browse the web or download mail?
For one, which facilities are available at the Cyber café? Most cyber cafés
can provide you with browsing, mail, printing, file download, Internet
phone and scanning facilities.
A major consideration is the Internet access speed. How long does it take you to access web sites or open your e-mail inbox? Is it a smooth fast operation or do you have the feeling you’re experiencing the World Wide Wait?
Is the cost or fee per hour reasonable or moderate and commensurate with other browsing centres? And what manner of timing is used? Is it hand-timing or computer based? But don’t be too carried away with low charges. What is the sense in patronizing a cyber café that charges a very low hourly rate, but whose access is snail speed? Low charges are not always good for you.
Does the cyber café have good customer relations? How do other customers view or assess them? Are people always willing to come back again or are there always complaints and negative remarks by people about them? Sometimes people stomach poor customer service from cyber cafés because they don’t really have any choice. For example this occurs mainly in areas where very few or only one cyber café is fast and reliable.
One also needs to consider the customer environment. Is the place neat and serene? Or is it always rowdy, crowded and unpleasant?
Is their uptime much more than their down time? Is their server always up or down? A popular refrain these days at cafes from café staff when customers are experiencing Internet access problems is “It’s not our fault. The problem is from the ISP.” Sorry, in my opinion that is the café’s problem and not the customer’s business.
Finally, what is the café’s tech support like? Does the cyber café have efficient technical support in case a customer runs into problems? Or are you On Your Own (OYO)? What is the café’s policy on preventive maintenance and computer security? Do their systems always damage your diskettes? Does the cafe serve as a Virus distributor cum Middle man or are there efficient virus control measures in place?
Knowing whether a cyber café is Internet heaven or hell may decrease some of the frustrations you may experience when you want to access the Net from a café. No café is perfect. But you should be able to recognize these situations.
Usi Ihongbe, Customer Relations Executive contributed this article.
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You can also find a list of some cybercafes in Nigeria on this link:
Do you know of any cybercafe that should be included in this list? Send the details to us at http://www.jidaw.com/contact.html
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