Happy New Year: Dish, DirecTV/AT&T, Time Warner Cable All Raising Rates In January Because They Can

For a bunch of the big cable and satellite companies, it does indeed look like a very merry Christmas and a happy new year are on the horizon — but consumers can be forgiven for feeling a lot more grinchy about it. That’s because all the new nickels, dimes, and dollars that are going to line businesses’ big virtual pockets are coming directly from subscribers in the form of unasked-for price hikes.

Readers at the tech news site DSL Reports have spotted fee increase notices for the new year from Dish, AT&T/DirecTV, and Time Warner Cable in the last week, and nobody would be surprised to find other cable companies following suit.

DirecTV and AT&T’s Uverse, now part of the same company, both announced rate hikes last week. The price increases aren’t the same for every customer, but different base packages, channel bundles, and premium channels will see increases ranging from $2 to $8 per month. AT&T voice customers may also see their bills go up by $2, and the “broadcast TV surcharge” is heading up by $1 across the board. Although the individual increases aren’t large, when you put it all together consumers could easily see an extra $10-$20 per month appear on their bills beginning January 28.

Dish Network is going the same route, increasing the pricing on its bundles from between $2 and $8 per month beginning on January 14.

TWC, though, is going all out. Not only will they be bumping the cost of TV channel bundles and premium channels, but also they will be increasing the rates for broadband services and cable modem rentals. TWC customers will see their broadcast TV fee increase by $1 and their cable modem rental price go up by $2, along with hikes for prices of digital adapters, remote controls, DVRs, and DVR service.

The worst part is, there’s really not much consumers can do about it. Satellite pay-TV customers in theory can switch between companies fairly readily, but both the major players are raising rates by the same amount. And Time Warner Cable’s customers are pretty universally stuck without competition at all.

Time Warner Cable Joins The Rate Hike Season Festivities

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  1. webalias says:

    I think the idea that Dish, DirecTV and others are raising rates “Because They Can” is a bit unfair, or at least an oversimplification. Over the last several years content providers like CNN, Fox, Disney and others have raised rates significantly, while in some cases simultaneously cutting back on their investment in programming. To its credit, Dish for one has resisted these increases, knowing consumers would ultimately have to pick up the tab — even though that’s meant blackouts in some cases. Let’s at least not put all the blame on Dish, DirecTV and the cable companies, when the greed of corporate behemoths like CNN, Fox, Disney, etc. is also at play.

  2. theoriginalcatastrophegirl says:

    counting down to google fiber…..
    glad i own my own modem and have talked most of my TWC service area friends into buying theirs as well