For years, we here at Consumerist HQ have heard anecdotal claims that negotiating for a better rate from your cable provider is no longer as simple as it used to be. The discounts weren’t as deep, people would say, the offers were on the weak side, and in the wake of bad PR, companies have seemed more willing to call customers’ bluff and let them cancel service painlessly. Of course, anecdotes do not equal data, so we wanted to know: is this actually a thing? [More]
Your Cable Company Will Probably Give You Free HBO For A Few Months, But Good Luck Getting The “New Customer” Rate
Remember that whole thing where Time Warner Cable was going to install really fast internet upgrades and try to suck a whole lot less? Yeah, that. Well, like the TWC brand itself, the plan to upgrade cities to “Maxx” internet speed is now being left in the dust thanks to the acquisition by Charter.
When one brand takes over another, it takes over the other company’s assets, which include customers, intellectual property, buildings, and employees. Does the larger company get to take over agreements with vendors and extend them across the entire company, though? Fox News says that no, they do not, as Charter tries to extend Time Warner Cable’s carriage fee agreement for the channel and its sibling Fox Business News across all of its own customers now that it has acquired the smaller company. [More]
As mentioned in the earlier story about Sen. Claire McCaskill’s customer disservice call to her pay-TV provider, the Missouri senator and others on the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations held a hearing today to talk to cable industry executives about their bad billing practices. Not surprisingly, the cable suits did a bang-up job of proving that these companies deserve their poor reputation. [More]
Remember how literally just yesterday the Attorney General’s office in New York was strongly suggesting to Charter that they get on the ball about that whole “making service not suck” thing now that they’ve bought Time Warner Cable? Well, analysts are saying that New Yorkers — and everyone else — probably shouldn’t hold their breath.
Last fall, the New York Attorney General launched an investigation to find out the answer to one big question: are New Yorkers actually getting anything like the internet speeds their providers claim, and that they pay for? The investigation is still underway, but early results say that from one provider at least, the answer is a big fat “no.”
If there’s one person in this world who really doesn’t want to be on the receiving end of your complaints about Time Warner Cable’s poor service, it’s probably Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes; not because he’s some sort of uncaring jerk, but because he has nothing to do with Time Warner Cable. [More]
A major annual consumer satisfaction survey is out, and it’s a mixed bag for the cable and telecom sector and all of us who use it. The bad: pay-TV, broadband, phone, and wireless companies still pretty much really suck, and most of us are very dissatisfied with them. The good: year over year, most of them are finally starting to suck less than they used to!
Over the last few months, we’ve reviewed cable and internet service bills for seven of the nation’s largest providers in an attempt to make sense of all those fees and charges. So what did we learn from these bills covering cable, satellite, and fiber customers from Connecticut to California? [More]
After the FCC gave its blessing to the marriage of Time Warner Cable and Charter, the only thing standing in the way of marital bliss was the possibility that the California Public Utilities Commission might go full drunk-uncle and raise a boatload of objections before the final “I do”s. However, today the CPUC decided instead to raise a toast to the mega-merger.
A couple weeks back, both the FCC and the Justice Department made it clear that they were not going to challenge the massive merger of Time Warner Cable, Charter Communications (and the third wheel of the merger á trois Bright House) after putting some conditions on the deal. Today, the FCC officially confirmed that it has given its blessing to this marriage of inconvenience. [More]
Earlier today — almost exactly a year after rejecting the merger of Time Warner Cable and Comcast — both the FCC and the Justice Department gave their blessing to the marriage of TWC and Charter. But what does that really mean for the millions of consumers who will be affected by the merger? [More]
Second time’s the charm: where Comcast failed, Charter has succeeded. Time Warner Cable officially has its buyer as of today.
Dangling a free prepaid gift card in front of folks’ faces is a time-honored method of getting people to switch services. But a number of cable customers who switched to Time Warner Cable because of the promise of a $300 gift card say the pay-TV provider has yet to make good on the promotion.
What Comcast spent more than a year failing to do looks to be a victory in the making for Charter: As the Washington rumor mill has it, the three-way mega-cable-merge of Charter, Time Warner Cable, and Bright House Networks could get through a major hurdle and gain approval by the end of the week. In other words, it looks like this one’s going to happen.
The proposed merger of Charter, Time Warner Cable, and Bright House would create the second-largest cable company behind Comcast, at a time when it’s possible to access most of the content that was once exclusive to cable TV through streaming services. Yet the company that brings you HBO and CNN is concerned that a larger, stronger Charter might work to hold back progress in streaming video, the main competition for its cable service. Time Warner filed its concerns with the Federal Communications Commission. [More]
When you sign up for services — some combination of TV, broadband, and/or phone — from your cable company, you’re told you’ll pay something like $49 or $99 a month… and yet the price you actually pay can be 30-40% or more on top of that, thanks to a heap of sometimes confusing charges and fees. Which ones do you blame the government for, and which are made up by your cable company? One cable company at a time, we’re going to use real customers’ bills to break it down. We’ve already looked at Comcast. Up now: Time Warner Cable. [More]