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NoFanOfCox's avatar
NoFanOfCox
New Contributor III
11 months ago

Permanently disabling Call Waiting impossible????

This may be beating a dead horse (and I suspect it is) but is there actually any way to disable Call Waiting through the Voice Tools interface and have it remain disabled? I've just downgraded my service dropping cable TV (finally) after the cost went up by 50% this month. Thanks for giving me the motivation to ditch this overpriced nonsense. Updating my service seemed to trigger sending me the latest version of the cable modem--the one that looks like a miniature white Leaning Tower of Pisa. Years back I was informed that COX was powerless to make my choice for Call Waiting to be activated or deactivated stick as the previous modem had "burned in" defaults that it would reset to whenever the modem reset. I thought it odd that a communications company would be held hostage to the supposed design specs of a modem but I was told by a high-level area manager that COX was powerless to make sensible changes to the system and I'd just have to continue to log in and disable Call Waiting through the Voice Tools repeatedly.

I never believed that excuse (even for a poorly managed company like COX who could never solve several other technical issues concerning use of a smart card). I had a small glimmer of hope that a newer generation of cable modem might possibly store my desire to have Call Waiting disabled after a reboot but alas it is still a persistent problem. My last cable provider stored my configuration in a database and downloaded that to the cable modem upon reboot. COX has insisted that this is the modem's fault (apparently every modem they choose to send to its customers) and that choices like Voice Mail and Call Forwarding and Simultaneous Ring are restored from read-only defaults stored in the modem and there is no technical solution possible. Funny that my Voice Mail and Call Forwarding and Nomorobo/Simultaneous Ring settings are preserved after a reboot of the modem but only Call Waiting is forced on my by the evil-minded engineers who designed the cable modem (apparently every different model purchased by COX).

I've seen posts here on this forum complaining about similar issues going back many years so this is a well known issues that COX is apparently simply too lazy to resolve. Maybe, if 99% of their user base complained about this bug then someone would be motivated to fix it (and I know it can be fixed because the excuse that the modem won't allow such a fix is transparently BS).

I've tried calling customer service (which went nowhere though it made it to the SE area manager). I've tried Chat but we all know that they can't deal with any issues off their tight scripts. In a moment of optimism (uncharacteristic to be sure) I'm posting to this support forum. I'm not expecting any resolution as I assume COX will be intractable in their position that "nothing can be done" as they are held hostage to all the evil manufacturers of cable modems who are so enamored with Call Waiting that it goes against their wishes to allow anybody to opt out permanently.

58 Replies

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  • DRVEGAS's avatar
    DRVEGAS
    Valued Contributor

    I'm confused because mine doesn't do that.  I think I have the same modem as you have 🤔 

  • WiderMouthOpen's avatar
    WiderMouthOpen
    Esteemed Contributor

    I am not aware of the bug but sounds like you have done your homework so I will take your word for it. I know with Cox Business(CB), you can disable it via Voicemanager. See page 75 of this guide for confirmation. I know CB uses a different virtual platform. Not saying you should change to CB just saying it isn't a unfixable issue. I hope you get to the bottom of this.

  • DRVEGAS's avatar
    DRVEGAS
    Valued Contributor

    Is this the same modem that you have >

    Panoramic Wifi Gateway

    Brand: TECHNICOLOR

    Model: CGM4331COM

  • NoFanOfCox's avatar
    NoFanOfCox
    New Contributor III

    The one that was shipped to me yesterday that I installed is:

    Panoramic Wifi Gateway
    Brand: ARRIS
    Model: TG4482A

    The un-dead Call Waiting zombie issue has persisted for 3 years on the previous black tower modem and now on this one. I know it is not an issue with the hardware but COX used that as an excuse as to why they could not fix this. "The modem has this read-only default saved in hardware and it cannot be changed" was their line.

    Just for giggles I tried the support Chat. I asked for a real human and chatted for about 30 minutes. I'm pretty sure there was no human at the other end but likely a ChatGPT AI script. Either that or I was so far out of the poor guy's script that he had no idea what to do with me. Suggested diagnostic options like checking for dial tone and then rebooted my modem remotely. This of course killed my internet and dropped the chat (possibly a means to end the chat session). Surprise, surprise--when the modem finally came back up and restored internet, my Call Waiting was re-enabled.

    I'd attach a screen capture as proof but this forum does not seem to allow actual image attachments that are not URLs.

    • WiderMouthOpen's avatar
      WiderMouthOpen
      Esteemed Contributor

      See here on how to attach images. Basically you have to click on the button on the Phone home screen that ends with "Click to join" then you can Insert > Insert Image/Video/File.

    • Darkatt's avatar
      Darkatt
      Valued Contributor III

      If you turn call waiting OFF, and you power cycle, change, swap the telephone modem, it turns itself back on. 

      Same with voice mail. 

    • WiderMouthOpen's avatar
      WiderMouthOpen
      Esteemed Contributor
      Just for giggles I tried the support Chat.

      Avoid the chat at all costs. Phone support is pretty useless too. I suggest emailing the moderators here at cox.help@cox.com and see what they say. Maybe they can open a ticket with what ever vendor owns the switches? At the very least they can confirm what you already know but in a official manner. 

  • DRVEGAS's avatar
    DRVEGAS
    Valued Contributor

    Does your call waiting only turn on or off when your modem resets or is it turning on or off without the modem resetting?

    • NoFanOfCox's avatar
      NoFanOfCox
      New Contributor III

      It will stay OFF (which is the way I want it) as long as the modem doesn't reset. I have the modem plugged into a UPS to limit the number of times it resets. Still, the modem resets on its own a couple times a month (not quite every week). When it does the Call Waiting (and no other setting) turns from OFF to ON. I usually notice this when I'm interrupted in the middle of a call by the obnoxious beep of another call trying to break through. Then I have to make a mental note to log into COX and reset the Call Waiting back to OFF again. Never a permanent fix (for the last 3+ years) but something that keeps me coming back to the COX website on a regular basis. Last week Call Waiting resurrecting itself had me back on the website again. That's when I noticed that my "bundle discount" had expired and my bill had gone up to close to $400/month. That was enough to have me drop cable TV and downgrade broadband. Too stupid to pay more to COX than my combined electric, gas and water bill each month.

  • CurtB's avatar
    CurtB
    Valued Contributor III

    @DRVEGAS

    You say Call Waiting doesn't turn back on when the modem is rebooted.  Are you sure?  Did you check the Voice Tools Call Waiting setting with your phone?  Use one of your laptops to turn off Call Waiting, reboot your modem and then check the Voice Tools Call Waiting setting again with the laptop.

    • NoFanOfCox's avatar
      NoFanOfCox
      New Contributor III

      Just the opposite. It stays OFF until the modem resets. Then it is invariably turned back to ON. I specifically turned it off yesterday when I logged into the Voice Tools after installing the new modem. After a useless chat with AI my modem was remotely reset. The screen grab I posted earlier shows that Call Waiting has been re-enabled. It will do that without fail each and every time the modem resets--seemingly no way to keep Call Waiting OFF permanently. If I had wanted it permanently ON then I would not have a problem. COX seems unwilling for me not to make use of this phone feature which I disdain.

      • CurtB's avatar
        CurtB
        Valued Contributor III

        My reply was directed to DRVEGAS.  I replied to your initial post because the Forum gets confused when replies are posted out of chronological sequence.

    • DRVEGAS's avatar
      DRVEGAS
      Valued Contributor

      My call waiting setting only changes when I change it in the voicetools like it should.

  • lhn_fan's avatar
    lhn_fan
    New Contributor III

    I'm been having a similar problem for over a year now.  My Call Waiting toggle show OFF, but call waiting is ON.  I want Call Waiting to be OFF.  If I try to flip the switch on the web page I get a message to try again later.  Cox support can duplicate the problem using my user ID and password, but they haven't been able to fix it.

    I'm not 100% sure, but the problem might have begun when Cox downgraded me from the Panoramic 4331 router (one of the white ones) to the 4141 (older black ones).  Cox even swapped out the 4141 for another 4141 but the problem still occurs.

    • NoFanOfCox's avatar
      NoFanOfCox
      New Contributor III

      I show Call Waiting ON after a reboot. It seems independent of the cable modem hardware. I think it is a much more systemic problem that many have problems with but COX has no desire to address. Nice to know there are others struggling with similar issues but that does little to solve the problem.

  • DRVEGAS's avatar
    DRVEGAS
    Valued Contributor

    This is interesting.  When I try *37 or *38 using an actual phone it says that these features are no longer supported so why are they even listed in this features cheat sheet and if they are no longer supported then why do they actually work?  Has anyone seen this comment of mine?

  • DRVEGAS's avatar
    DRVEGAS
    Valued Contributor

    Just leave your call waiting enabled.  Why do you want to disable it.  I had the opposite problem a while ago because I couldn't enable it for some oddball reason but then it started working again 🤔

    • lhn_fan's avatar
      lhn_fan
      New Contributor III

      I want to disable it because many of the call are junk solicitaions.  I don't need to be interrupted by someone I don't want to talk to anyway.  If it's someone I want to talk to it can go to voicemail when I am on the phone, and I can return the call whenever I want.

      • DRVEGAS's avatar
        DRVEGAS
        Valued Contributor

        Try *38 on your phone to see if that will work.

  • WiderMouthOpen's avatar
    WiderMouthOpen
    Esteemed Contributor

    Not to beat a dead horse, but I asked someone on Reddit about the outsourced switches, and seems they are in Comcast's hands, as per here.

    • Darkatt's avatar
      Darkatt
      Valued Contributor III

      Correct, but, like I said, I wasn't in a position to say anything about it. :(