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Time Warner costs and old dable modem?

Last year at this time, work chose to no longer pay for Internet services for its employees. So, that was an additional $35/month I needed to pay to keep Time Warner cable modem service. I know other work places have gone the same route and learned to accept it. A year later, my bill indicates my rate is now going from $35 to $55. I guess that $35/month was just an introductory rate for a year. Grrrr... My TV service is DirecTV, so cable modem service is the only thing on my TWC bill right now.

Paying $55/month seems high for the level of service I get. I can't argue with their reliability as it RARELY ever goes offline even during severe weather. However, I only get about 4Mbps down and 320kpbs up. I later learned that I should be getting about 7Mbps down and about 512kbps up. I think my lower bandwidth is tied to having a really old cable modem that is probably 5 years old now (Moto Surfboard SB4100). Is it a fair assumption that a new modem would bump up the bandwidth? I'm having a hard time finding specs on this and comparing units.

Furthermore, what's the best way to argue for a better rate? The next best thing is Verizon DSL service and the max they deliver is 3Mbps at $45/month. So, I don't think that's a good deal either.

I'm definitely interested in Verizon FiOS, but it will still be awhile before that's available in North Carolina.

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( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
barak
Mar. 5th, 2010 05:59 pm (UTC)
If you want to stay with TW, you just might be able to get a better rate just by asking.

Check around and see if they, or their competition, are offering any special offers currently and then call and ask if they'll honor that or match it.

Lifehacker.com posted a hint earlier this year about how to handle that: here.
snowboardjoe
Mar. 5th, 2010 06:19 pm (UTC)
I think just asking might help. I could play on my loyalty as well since I've been a TWC customer since they introduced their cable modem services years ago (I was in the beta testing pool). I know I'm not in a position to demand anything. There is no other competing cable modem service either. :(
kauko
Mar. 5th, 2010 06:01 pm (UTC)
I've always payed around $55 for Time Warner internet service as far as I can remember. I can't ever remember my bill being as low as $35.
snowboardjoe
Mar. 5th, 2010 06:20 pm (UTC)
So, I should just suck it up, huh? :p
kauko
Mar. 5th, 2010 06:23 pm (UTC)
Not saying that :P just wondering why I've always been paying so much.
rwgill
Mar. 5th, 2010 06:09 pm (UTC)
I guess it's possible the cable modem is limiting your bandwith. I have a Moto Surboard 5120 which is around 4 years old. As Comcast has increased the bandwith of the network I've enjoyed a speed increase as well without any equipment changes.

My current speeds are 40Mbps down and 2.5Mbps up. That's tested using http://www.speakeasy.net/speedtest/.
snowboardjoe
Mar. 5th, 2010 06:21 pm (UTC)
40Mbps? I didn't even know that as possible. Damn. How much are you paying for that kind of bandwidth? What are you doing that requires that much bandwidth? ;)
rwgill
Mar. 5th, 2010 06:29 pm (UTC)
My Internet is $45.95 per month. I also have TV from Comcast so that earns me a $5 discount on the Internet.

The bandwith is just there and I don't use a that much of it. I do seem to remember they have some sort of download burst gizmo set-up so that the first xMB of a download is at a much higher speed.
spatts5
Mar. 5th, 2010 06:55 pm (UTC)
I just went thru this with TWC. They don't bother to tell you when your "special" deal has expired, they just raise your bill. I have cable and internet service with them and it seems they have different "levels" of internet (low, regular and super speed). I'd call them to see which one you have and see what kind of new special program they can put you on.
mat_t
Mar. 5th, 2010 08:28 pm (UTC)
I had the same thing happen with Comcast. I'd forgotten that I had introductory pricing, so when I saw the new bill, my eyes popped. I dug out an old bill and noticed that it used to say something like "Introductory package x" and the new bill just said "package x". That's when the light bulb went on ;)
mikiedoggie
Mar. 5th, 2010 09:10 pm (UTC)
My experience is just call up your cable modem company and just tell them in a straightforward way you want their cheapest rate again. If it helps, do some due diligence and see what comparable services will cost if that helps. Usually the customer service reps have a script where they will lower a customer's fees automatically when asked after the 1-yr grace period ends.
rbsmith77
Mar. 6th, 2010 06:00 am (UTC)
Sorry for the delay in getting this out there. I dunno if bumping your modem would help any. There is a specific case for it, but you would need to chat with someone with a clue at TWC.

My Gentleman Farmer friend is getting 50-100Mbps on his Comcast service. They claim a burst rate of 100, I have seen sustained 50 though. The rub with that speed comes three-fold.
1) Cable's Infrastructure - Head-end & Cable Modem have to be at the same docsis version. Comcast is rolling out docsis v3 for those higher speeds. Only a few modems on there are v3 capable.
2) All routers aren't created equal. My buddy saw 50Mbps with a direct modem connection to his laptop. When connected to a standard Linksys Router doing NAT, it dropped to 20Mbps. Reason is the Linksys can't translate and do the firewall operation at that speed. I pointed him in he direction of the Cisco SA 520W, which took over the PIX model line.
3) Cost - I don't even want to know how much he's paying Comcast for all that speed. The 50Mbps service is $100/month + $200-Cisco SA 520W + $100-cable modem.

I'm using Comcast's standard high speed ($45ish.month) getting about 11Mbps down and 3Mbps up.

Here's a write up about DOCSIS - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DOCSIS

( 12 comments — Leave a comment )

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