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Charter page on DSLReports
Six Month Rating

Reviews:
bullet 2341 reviews (889 good) (889 bad)
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Review by JWNelson See Profile

  • Location: Columbia,Boone,MO
  • Cost: $29 per month
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "Fast install and good speeds"
Bad "None"
Overall "Best in Columbia but only available in a few neighborhoods"
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
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Value for money:
(ratings above consensus)

Before moving to Columbia summer 2013, I spent some time researching the local options for Internet. I was aware that Mediacom was the local cable provider, though also knew Charter came up in some searches as available in the ZIP code I would be moving to (also comprising a lot of rural area north and south of Columbia) but wasn't sure what their actual service area was or if it compared adequately to "normal" Charter markets where they are the default franchise. I started by looking into Socket, which advertises local service, staff, and support. But also slow speeds and poor value for the price, with people I had already talked to using Socket not even getting the speeds they were paying for. I was familiar with CenturyLink from Omaha (see previous review) but while Omaha, at the time, could get 40 Mbps, Columbia topped out at 10 Mbps. (I have seen ads that they are now up to 20 Mbps in select areas.) Soon to be working from home, I needed faster download and upload speeds, so got approval from my supervisor for Mediacom 50/5 service and ordered. The service appointment was a week out. I cleared my schedule to be home when the tech was supposed to show up and install and he never showed up at the door. At the end of the time window I called Mediacom and they found the tech's notes that my address was not serviceable as Mediacom did not have any lines in this neighborhood (despite having taken my order). That was when I learned this neighborhood was actually one of the Charter-only neighborhoods. I called to order so I could get a live person to verify things for me, and the very next day -- less than 24 hours later -- I had service!

Speeds have been consistent between 30 and 50 Mbps during the day, with PowerBoost as high as 80 at the beginning of downloads. I am supposed to be on the 30/4 tier which will be bumped up to 60/4 when the local headend is upgraded to Spectrum/all digital. Currently, my DOCSIS 3.0 modem shows I am using 4 channels downstream and 1 channel upstream. There can be moderate congestion in the evenings which is my only complaint. While speeds are usually still good, ping times can become very slow when everyone is home and online.

The local Charter system remains a bit of a mystery -- we are in far north Columbia and there is a new Charter office just blocks away, but most of the businesses surrounding the Charter office are actually connected to Mediacom. Charter used to have a couple buildings in an industrial park nearby, with satellite dishes and a microwave and broadcast receiving mast, but the dishes and one of the buildings were torn down this year, leaving just one building with the Charter logo on it, a couple trucks parked, and the microwave/broadcast mast. It was originally a Falcon/Capital Cable plant and FCC records show that at one point in the '90s they only had a little over 250 subscribers. I am not sure if they still have a cable head-end here or if it has been consolidated with another town; while we do not have cable service, a few clear QAM channels come in with the Internet service if I connect a tuner to the modem's cable, and I know on "The Weather Channel" the local forecasts are all for Mexico, MO. IP hostname is *.stls.mo.charter.com indicating DHCP assignment is in St. Louis. I believe Charter used to have a local *.clma.mo.charter.com IP space but no longer.

We got a 6 month promotional rate of $29.99. The service will go up to $49.99 next month as the promotional period will have expired. I received the Cisco DPC3008 DOCSIS 3.0 modem with the installation. The tech originally had some trouble getting the Internet service to "lock" with the traps in place, so ended up doing a "homerun" install from the box on the side of the house across the basement ceiling and directly to the cable leading up to my office, bypassing the main splitter/distribution point in the house and the rest of the house wiring. Apparently the trap outside in the Charter box in my front yard blocks channels 3-75, but there is something else in the house that is further blocking signals to the rest of the house wiring. If I connect a TV to any other cable in the house and scan, I get a fuzzy picture on a couple analog channels in the upper 70s and no QAM at all. On the Internet cable, analog 2 and upper 70s as well as all the clear QAM channels positioned over ch. 75 come through.

Overall, very happy with Charter, though looking forward to the upcoming speed increase and more channel bonding as hopefully that will solve some of the evening congestion issues. They seem to be the best provider in Columbia as far as speed and value are concerned, if you are fortunate to live in one of the suburban neighborhoods they cover (mostly north of Blue Ridge Road or south of Nifong Blvd.). During the day, while I am working, I get a consistent download speed of over 30 Mbps and sometimes see as high as 70-80 Mbps for brief periods with PowerBoost. My wife and I do still occasionally run into buffering in the evening when watching Netflix, but far less often than she used to have with Socket!

I put together a map showing which provider serves which outlying areas around Columbia: »mapsengine.google.com/map/u/0/ed···N99eITxw Hopefully it will be helpful for others in the Columbia area.

1/23/14 - Just got on my computer this morning and had to reboot my router as the Internet was not working. When I checked the modem status page after the reboot, I found I now have 8 channel bonding downstream! Still just 1 channel upstream.

6/13/14 - We have 60 Mbps now! Powerboost to about 115 Mbps for the first few seconds of large downloads.

1/30/15 - No more PowerBoost, higher prices, and Charter email is basically unusable. That said, consistent 65/4.5 connection (60/4 advertised) and no real complaints. Using outlook.com for email now. Charter still beats all the competition in Columbia, MO. Just got Charter WiFi service ($5/mo.) and am very impressed. Review post here: »[HSI] Charter WiFi

member for 3.4 years, 743 visits, last login: 1 days ago
updated 2 days ago

Comments:

Review by CoolMan See Profile

  • Location: Tennessee
  • Cost: $60 per month
  • Install: about 7 days
Good "Quite Reliable, Receive Speeds Promised"
Bad "Shutdown the VERY helpful Social Media/Direct Support team"
Overall "It's either Charter or AT&T U-Verse Internet (with 18Mbps being the fastest available at our address)..."
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
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(ratings match consensus)

My Other Reviews

·Suddenlink
Overall Charter is reliable and we receive the speeds we pay for. We have the 60 Mbit/s plan (previously 30) which is one of only two plans offered now, with the 100 Mbit/s being the other. We do not subscribe to their TV or Phone service. When we originally subscribed Charter offered a 3 Mbit/s and 15 Mbit/s plan also. They also allowed customer owned modems when we subscribed. Late June 2012 they made a lot of changes to the company. There new CEO Tom Rutledge has made changes to the company that some people are not happy with such as: no longer allowing new customers to use their own modem, raising prices, dismantling the Social Media/Direct Support Team, no longer offering more competitive speed plans, and it really goes on and on...

Also an update to some of the above, Charter has now been officially allowing customer owned modems for several months now (in addition they do not charge a monthly rental for using theirs), they also modified the Terms/AUP in October 2014 and removed the specific number (250GB, 500GB etc.) of the bandwidth caps, these were very rarely enforced prior. They still have the the following stated which were standard years ago: "Excessive use of bandwidth that in Charter’s sole opinion places an unusually large burden on the network or goes above normal usage. Charter has the right to impose limits on excessive bandwidth consumption via any means available to Charter."

The first major issue we had was when we were initially installed the signal levels coming inside the premises were out of spec due to a problem with the incoming line that was replaced and buried underground much later since the connection worked for a while until the problem became much more worse and caused many problems. These problems as noted in the thread below have since been resolved, and since then we haven’t had any more connection or speed problems.

»[HSI] Cable Modem signal levels continue to drop

November 24, 2013 - Started experiencing issues with loss of sync at night to early morning; it only started occurring when the temperature outside was below 32°F. Called Charter and they sent out a really great technician who was able to find the issue and fix it. Apparently it was a HSI only trap/filter that had went bad and also a bad splice (which was allowing water in which would freeze and cause the modem to lose sync) of the underground cable where it comes up and connects to the cable that connects to the tap. After that we haven't had any other issues since then. We also changed our modem to another one that is capable of 8 channel downstream bonding since it is now available in our area.

December 19, 2013 - Experienced an outage from 2:40AM to about 4:30AM or so, it was back on some in between and went back down again. Called in and they said Charter was doing routine maintenance when something broke in this process which caused the entire area to go down. By 5AM it was up and running and stayed up and is all running normal now.

March 31, 2014 - Water was infiltrating in the down drop from the tap, had to have it replaced twice within this month (March), and at the bottom where it is coupled to the RG-11 before going underground now has a waterproof cover added by the technician. We believe it has helped as we haven't had the water infiltrating inside again yet which was causing packet loss and disconnections.

August 23, 2014 - Internet connection was down from 4:25PM to about 6PM, according to the automated IVR Charter was aware of the issue. Here at DSLR there were reports of DDoS attacks so that may have been a contributing factor.

October 30, 2014 - Experienced a very brief outage lasting only about 45 minutes, this was during the scheduled maintenance window.

December 8, 2014 - Speeds increased to 60 Mbps download, the new "Spectrum" service as Charter refers to it (which is all marketing). We do not have any issues with the connection to report currently and overall it has been rock solid for months.

January 10, 2015 - Updated 'Total Monthly Cost' at the top to reflect the $5 price increase implemented on internet only service.

member for 7 years, 713 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 22 days ago

Comments:

Review by bkjohnson See Profile

  • Location: Birmingham,Shelby,AL
  • Cost: $55 per month
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "Speed & Reliability"
Overall "Very happy with Charter. Wish I had switched earlier."
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(ratings above consensus)

Still happy. Added phone service. Internet getting better over time - increased speed, very reliable.

member for 12.7 years, 5393 visits, last login: a few minutes ago
updated 38 days ago

Comments:
ZaC851

join:2014-12-28
Helena, AL

Other than price, no complaints

Same here. I'm not thrilled about the pricing but I have their 100/5 internet service in Birmingham, AL as well and regardless of the time of day, I always get at least 98-103Mbps download speeds which is great since I download a lot of media. Not only that, but it almost never goes out.

I had charter years ago when I lived in NC and I had their number memorized I was calling them so much to report problems. I was lucky to get half of the speed I was paying for at the time, half of the time, the internet would be nearly unusable on weekday nights when most people were using it and outages were a weekly thing.






Review by cralt See Profile

  • Location: Harwinton,Litchfield,CT
  • Cost: $39 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 3 days
Good "Fast. Getting what I paid for. "
Bad "COMCAST is taking over this system soon. I will cancel when that happens. "
Overall "Good price for the speed. Reliable. Company installer did good job. "
Pre Sales information:
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My Other Reviews

·AT&T U-Verse
I like charter's order system. Was able to do it all online and pick my time slot. In-house installer showed up on time and did install in dark and in poor weather.
I could have had it installed in under 24 hours from order...they where calling me trying to come out because they had an install timeslot open up. I couldn't do it so I kept my original time. Which was still only 3 days from time of order.

Speed is reliable and consistent. 55-60M down. Around 4 up. I pay 39/month for internet only. The modem rental is free. They gave me a new D3 modem.

Its not a contract. The price is just good for 12months. I can cancel anytime.

member for 4 years, 146 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 39 days ago

Comments:

Review by meskinct See Profile

  • Location: Southbury,New Haven,CT
  • Cost: $39 per month
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "Reliable"
Bad "Upload needs a boost"
Overall "Seems Okay - Really my only option"
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15-DEC-2014-
Went all digital in September followed by a bump to 60/4 about three weeks later. Connection remains solid with speed tests of 66dn/4.3up. Unfortunately as part of the speed bump, the initial bursting went away. I was getting burst of over 240dn. Bonding 8 downstream and one upstream presently using a Cisco DPC3008 modem. Only thing lacking that I see is upstream bonding and an increase in upstream speeds as well as native IPv6/dual stack.

04-FEB-2013-
The internet connection is great. Solidly pulling 33dn/4up with a SB6121 modem supplied by Charter. Bursts on the downstream of over 110. The service is solid and consistent. Never have a slow down that I have detected. Pings are good and I have not experienced any packet loss.
TV - I'm an HD snob. The service is fair. I would love more HD but their base package is acceptable for the price. I am still on a 1yr promo for $107 for everything. This is $30 less (-$10 on the net, -$20 on the TV) than the normal rates.
Never has to deal with support so I can't speak to that.
Overall - satisfied for what I'm paying vs. what I'm getting.

02-OCT-2012 - New customer as of 9/28/2012
Service seems good so far. 30dn/4up
Service install was smooth. Techs showed up on time, pulled new service to house as it's new construction, terminated all ends, checked signals, all good!
Charter has supplied a Motorola 6121 modem.
Will update this review after a few months of service.

member for 13 years, 6946 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 48 days ago

Comments:

Review by sergek76 See Profile

  • Location: Saint Louis,Saint Louis,MO
  • Cost: $125 per month
  • Install: about 3 days
Good "fast, reliable service"
Bad "max 4 Mb/s upload speed"
Overall "best bang and reliability for the $"
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Got the silver triple play. Ordered with the standard 4 hour installation window, but once the tech arrived everything went fast with no issues. Overall very happy with the service so far with only one disruption of about 1/2 day in the last 1.5 years.

On the internet side it would be nice to have faster upload speeds from the 4Mb/s, but overall can't complain with 100/4 service as its been able to meet all my family's needs of multiple Netflix streams and webex class presentations.

On the TV side they need some help. The HD picture could be better (pixelation during fast scenes and explosions) and the cable box guide looks like it hasn't been updated since the 80's. The DVR menu and functionality also comes from the 80's.

Overall I think its a relatively good package with reasonable pricing, but I'm scared to see what the price will be like once the new customer pricing rates wear off.

member for 5.8 years, 29 visits, last login: 61 days ago
lodged 61 days ago

Comments:
stridr69

join:2003-05-19
San Luis Obispo, CA

After promo price

I'm on a similar plan as your are($132) per month. In February my cost will go up around $35 per month. So perhaps that would be similar to your cost. Just a ballpark figure though....

Review by dispatcher21 See Profile

  • Location: Walla Walla,Walla Walla,WA
  • Cost: $69 per month
  • Install: about 4 days
Good "After most recent pricing change and speed bump, its pretty awesome"
Bad "None really. Good speed, good uptime and price isnt bad"
Overall "For this area, best value for the speed. Good price for internet/phone bundle"
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New review since its been a while since the original and a lot has changed. Current speed of 60/4 is awesome and their new price structure is not too bad. For this area, they have the best speed for the price. In the several years I have been with them, only a couple outages and a few brief interruptions, connection is stable. Phone techs are not to bright but the techs on the trucks in this area are pretty with it. I recommend Charter to everyone in town.

member for 11 years, 1086 visits, last login: 61 days ago
updated 67 days ago

Comments:

Review by mixdup See Profile

  • Location: Calera,Shelby,AL
  • Cost: $109 per month
Good "Nice, stable connection. 100Mbps connection even out in the suburbs of Birmingham, Alabama"
Bad "Had trouble getting things installed originally, especially on the TV side with CableCard equipment."
Overall "Decent service, definitely see an improving trend, but still not perfect."
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I've been a Charter internet customer now for about four or five years, but just now getting around to reviewing them. The price listed is the price I was paying for internet only, although I have since switched to a bundle so my internet price, as a line item, is probably half what is listed. However I thought it most fair to list their unbundled price for the package I have.

My original install five years ago was perfectly smooth and uneventful. I was able to call and schedule the install without issue. As far as I remember, the installer showed up at a reasonable point in the install window. This was a new house so they ran a brand new underground line from the tap to my house (which was only about 10-15 feet). Speeds have been exactly as advertised the entire time I had them (it was a 15mbit down plan originally) and has generally been stable. About a year ago I had problems with my modem losing sync every time it got reasonably cold, but it never got to the point that I called support about it. Eventually that issue went away, so I am assuming they fixed it. Since then, it's been rock solid, excepting the very very occasional issue with packet loss that honestly could be outside of Charter's network.

My only criticisms are generally around the TV product. They have a decent HD lineup, but of course satellite beats them. However, their bundle pricing beats the pants off Charter Internet + DirecTV for TV. The main problem I had was that I am a CableCard/TiVo customer, and their install process for CableCard sucks. The original TV installer did not have them on the truck, and the ones he eventually brought did not work. Missed appointments, no one able to get it work. Eventually I had to escalate through a Charter employee who happens to monitor DSL Reports occasionally.

Also, they have a very steep install fee ($200) that they will not, under any circumstances (even as compensation for two weeks of missed appointments) ever budge on that applies to their 100mbit internet plan. I would really, really like to upgrade to this plan but right now it's 100/5, and that low upload speed doesn't really justify doubling the price and paying $200 (essentially paying for the modem, which you must rent, and the tech to come out and verify your signals)

Overall they are decent, but the customer service aspect is mediocre as you would expect from a cable company. They are much improved from their bankruptcy days, and I hope that trend continues.

UPDATE:

I am moving from a Charter area, but wanted to update this review before I move.

Lately my internet has been very stable. Had some trouble with World of Warcraft, but that could be due to WoW servers, not necessarily Charter. They have gone all digital on the TV side and the channel lineup beats satellite hands down. Plus, it's still cheaper than satellite + stand alone internet. Still wish they would provide more than 5Mbps for the upload on the Ultra 100 internet tier.

member for 11.6 years, 1010 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 74 days ago

Comments:

Review by tstolze See Profile

  • Location: O Fallon,Saint Charles,MO
  • Cost: $45 per month
  • Install: about 5 days
Good "So far so good, getting advertised speeds, low pings."
Overall "Price is right if you bundle."
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I have only been with Charter for a day now. Techs came ran cable, hooked up my modem. I was up and running in less than 30 minutes. After they left I hooked up my network, no problems, just cloned the Mac of the original computer hooked up and off it went. Stayed connected for 4hrs 15 minutes, then I couldn't connect. Called customer service, rep stated there was no modem associated with my account. I gave her the Mac of my modem and all has been fine since, ten minutes on the phone, can't complain. I have the 3.0/256 package, speed test are 2900/280, pings are equal to my Centurytel DSL. Have not been able to get trackpass working, hopefully it just takes time to work through the system, as I was told this is part of the HSI package. Also had to call as my account number wasn't recognized by the system to setup my account access and email. Took about 15 minutes, rep did it from his end, I gave him the username and password(which I have changed) and I was able to access after about a five minute wait..

Update on trackpass: Used Charter's online support chat, after concluding I was doing everything correct, the rep gave me the number for Nascar tech support. Called and they gave me a temporary username and password. They think my information probably has not made it through the system yet.

Update: All I have to say is watch your bills. I was warned about this, and now I have had to call on my first two bills. I was billed a total of $110 to much between my first two bills, they did fix it quickly, hopefully things will be okay from here...

Update 6/5/06

Been on the new 10/1 tier for a week now, speeds and pings are consistent in my area. Although the price is a little steep, I greatly needed the upload for gaming, website updates and a wife that loves to send pictures to Sam's Club by the hundreds! At 2 megs each it used to take a very long time, she is happy now, and a great excuse for me to get more bandwidth. Still say watch your bills, and my Trackpass stopped working after the upgrade, time to call and see what is going on...

Update 4/1/07

Connection still stable, had some more billing issues after I added HD to my TV package. Went through some long outages this winter, seems the backup in my node is capable of running 3-6 hrs on a full charge. Overall I am satisfied, would like more HD programming, I am sure that will come with time. My 12 month deal is up the first week of May. I do have some decisions to make, as normal pricing is to expensive.

Update 5/4/07

I am done, have Centurytel, and Dish Network coming back next week.

Had another "bill" issue, overcharged by $50+ for the month. Called and got a horrible rep on the phone. Seems every 2-3 months I have to call to get my bill fixed, then the wrong amount is still charged to my credit card and the credit shows up on the next bill. I wouldn't mind, but I have to analyze each bill to make sure it is correct.

(Update) 11/28/2011 I am now a Charter customer again, stuck with Centurylink as long as I could, now that they announced they will have a cap starting in February 2012, my reasons for not switching are gone. I have been in need of more upstream for some time now, with Charter I have it, signed up for the 18/2 and am receiving the upcoming tier of 30/4. Speedtest with Powerboost have been running 50/4 with large downloads settling in at 30 down. So far so good, I'm impressed, now let's hope the billing bugs don't creep into my account again, as that was my reasons for leaving in 2007.

11/24/12: We have been back with Charter for a year now. It works as advertised, no billing issues as in the past....What can I say, I now recommend Charter to my friends and family, this is a complete 180 from the past..

Purchased a tuner card for my server and now have Charter TV service using a Cable Card setup. Just testing now, waiting for Ceton to release the new media center extender. At that time I will cancel Dish. Charter TV will save us $40/month over Dish with a 922 DVR.

Update 10/19/14... Almost 3 years back, with few issues. Last Winter I was experiencing loss of phone/internet on nights it was below 10 outside. Sent a tech out and found the connection from my drop to the pedestal was corroded. Put a new connector on the cable and all is well.

I am in the St. Louis region so our speed upgrade was to 100 down, still 4 up. Speed test run over 100 at all times of day, typical is 109/4.4.

Still using my Windows Media setup with a Ceton tuner and Ceton Echos at the TV's. Very happy with the service even though we have lost our promotional pricing.



member for 11.4 years, 5491 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 105 days ago

Comments:

Review by cdigioia See Profile

  • Location: Grants Pass,Josephine,OR
  • Cost: $40 per month
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "Often upwards of 160Mbps down! "
Bad "Some nights have brief outages"
Overall "I just moved from a large city in E. Asia to a small US city. Wow am I surprised my internet is *faster* here..."
Pre Sales information:
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(ratings above consensus)

I have had the "Charter Spectrum" internet-only package for just over a month. It was a $30 install fee. The modem is free to use - an Arris TM822A (which is DOCSIS 3.0). No contract. Monthly fee is $40/month for the next year. After that, "introductory pricing" ends, and it'll be god knows how much.

Speeds are phenomenal. It's officially "up to 60Mbps", but I consistently get anywhere from 130-170 down. Seriously. I actually ended up upgrading our wireless network so as not to "waste" all this unexpected speed. Up is around 4-6. What's crazy is I just moved from a very large E. Asian city, to a small US city - and my speeds are almost 2x faster here! That's weird, and very unexpected. Perhaps the 130-170 won't last, but it's been amazing so far (and usually closer to 170 than 130).

Install was pretty good, and *very* fast. I ordered around 1:00am on day 1, then by noon of day 2 they were here! About 36 hours in total. Install took about 2 hours. First they found the cable outlet in the master bedroom (we didn't want the modem there though), then after searching - found the cable line in the living room. It had been hidden behind a wallplate commandeered by the satellite install. But, he tested that line - not so good. So after talking, we opted for a completely new line to be put into the bedroom nearest the cable box. Probably we could have insisted they run line through the attic/etc. to the living room but...seems like a lot to ask, so we didn't. On the plus side, the exterior wiring he did to get a new line into the guest bedroom - couldn't be any neater. Very professional job.

Overall I'm extremely happy with it. The only con has been very late at night - on some nights, there are brief outages (like 3 minutes). Seems reasonable though.



member for 9.6 years, 1497 visits, last login: 119 days ago
updated 126 days ago

Comments: