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RCN CABLE page on DSLReports
Six Month Rating

Reviews:
bullet 363 reviews (189 good) (84 bad)
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Review by scott523 See Profile

  • Location: Upper Darby,Delaware,PA
  • Cost: $53 per month
  • Install: about 10 days
Good "Price, Quick and simple installation."
Bad "Inconsistent speeds, Old debts ON property MUST be paid."
Overall "Best speed for the price. "
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection Reliability:
Tech Support:
Services:
Value for money:
(ratings match consensus)

Story:
Returned to RCN after their previous management failed to match Verizon's offering in 2010 and now (2013) Verizon can't match RCN's offering under new management.

Services:
Unlimited phone covers North America and Internet speed is 50/5 Mbps.

Installation:
Installation was quick since I had RCN before. A simple DOSIS 3.0 cable modem was installed and a phone box down in the basement. I opted to connect my own Apple AirPort Extreme base station to the modem. This is one less equipment to return if I have to jump ship.

Good:
1. Best speed for the price despite inconsistent speeds (see below).
2. Quick installation and no software required.
3. Although I could have signed up myself, this offer was brought to me by a kind representative going door to door.

Bad:
1. Inconsistent speeds an issue, especially during peak time. Speeds can go from 5/6 to 30/8 Mbps. It's a good thing I'm not a power user or I may consider using Verizon FiOS which is reliable.
2. Upon signing up for service, the representative ran a check of any debts on the property. There was an unpaid debt NOT under my name but someone who used to live here. If I didn't know this person or if my service deal wasn't good, I would've turned away but I paid the discounted debt dating back about 5 years.

member for 9 years, 1704 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 16 days ago

Comments:

Review by lucasf See Profile

  • Location: Somerville,Middlesex,MA
  • Cost: $98 per month
  • Install: about 3 days
Good "tech support is great"
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(ratings match consensus)

i have had rcn for 5 years.
recently upgraded to the Tivo TV package which has increased the bill by a ton, so not happy with that.
Rental modem has been needing full Co-Ax reboots more frequently for some reason.
Not sure if it is service or hardware, but it is annoying.
The speed and bandwidth are never a problem. We can have 5 devices going at once on our home network, and it's never lagged.

member for 11.4 years, 67 visits, last login: 12 days ago
lodged 34 days ago

Comments:

Review by Maggs See Profile

  • Location: Woodside,Queens,NY
  • Cost: $160 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 65 days
Good "Stable Service"
Bad "Phone goes out when you don't have power for a few days :("
Overall "Much more improved, good work folks."
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection Reliability:
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Value for money:
(ratings match consensus)

10/9/14: RCN has greatly improved since being bought out by a private equity firm. The speeds are fast, but there are still issues with DNS resolves at certain times. Overall value for the price is amazing. We get unlimited local, long distance, 25MB/2 internet, and standard cable service for around $160, can't beat that package. Although I don't like the new sports and broadcast surcharge, why not just raise the prices to add that in.

10/13/13: 2:51AM: RCN has us setup for the 25/2 package, and I can't even get anywhere close to that. I only get about 5Mbps/ 2000 from the last few tests I've conducted. It's probably due to the fact that I have a DOCSIS 1.1 modem the SB5101U. The fact that they charge $6 for a converter for RCN Signature Cable is nuts. Those units can be purchased in bulk by MSOs and they are cash cows after the first year. We pay over $160 a month for triple play, that's like a single play since they now require a modem to get their phone service which eats your electricity. They abruptly turned off our phone service at one point in order to let us know that they were switching out the services. It's not really a value for the money anymore and they way they itemize the bill is useless to determine what you're actually paying for each service. We setup auto bill pay for the credit card rewards at this point, and it saves a stamp to mail a bill out.

11/2012: RCN gave us a credit for the long Sandy outage due to power loss. I love the fact they have a new insert in the bill advertising the fact they now require converters and they are free. Turns out they have been charging us for over a year for the "free" converter. My cable modem rental fee credit negates the converter charge but that's not the point. They really need to unify their communications and get everyone on the same page here. I'm going to request a credit for the time period we have been paying for the "free" converter. All in all, the speeds were increased on the cable modem service, which is good. 25/2 service is nice, but I don't really need all that speed. I love how they now require an EMTA to receive digital phone service that needs to be plugged in for your phone to work, and how they unceremoniously shut us off and I had to call and find out they shut off service to customers who have not upgraded their phone service. It's nice that they decided to leave the piece of trash RSU bolted to the back of the house, it's their property and they should remove it when it is no longer needed as part of their service. The unit was discontinued and the manufacturer is out of business, so there's really no need for the unit to be bolted to the brickface of the house anymore. RCN really needs to up their game in the customer service arena in some cases. Also I love how people are so critical of RCN for outages of their service due to Hurricane Sandy, remember people it's a hurricane. They can't control the weather.

7/2011 RCN has got way better since I last reviewed them. I have the occasional "hungry squirrel" problem but that's not too wild. The TV service is TMC (Too Many Channels) but their cable modem service has been great for a while. I got upgraded to 10Mb service when they got rid of the 5Mb service. The bill however is slightly confusing since they don't really itemize too much anymore. All in all RCN has gotten way better. Knock on Wood.

10/2008: I had a problem with RCN, as noted by the newspapers with them charging for the 1st basic cable box which is free. I had to haggle with them for 2 months to fix it, but it was resolved after a complaint to NYC DOITT. Made my mother feel like a dope at the Woodside office, but you don't get good employees sometimes. Sludge happens!

4/20/2008: Haven't had any problems with RCN yet, except for the DNS, which is easily remedied by changing DNS servers, and the 20 second dropoff in phone conversations. The price has increased due to the cable programming being jacked up. With the introduction to all digital TV next year be prepared to pay another $7 a month for extra converters. Speeds on the internet service exceed spec most of the time. RCN forum support folk are awesome, they must really like their jobs. Inept construction crews decide to slice through RCN fiberoptic cable at times making internet service use a PITA at points, but that's very rare, but it happens. Con Ed sometimes decides the nodes don't need power in the summer, and they go offline during brownouts due to things outside RCN control.

All in all there's decent service, the 20 second dropoff in the phone at random times is something I still have to check out.

1/12/2006: RCN has GREATLY improved. The service has gotten immensely better since they have a new management team. You know what they say about fresh blood, it does all the good.

I had a couple of hiccups with the phone service lately, outages for a couple of hours but nothing really major. Cable modem service runs exceptionally well, and I haven't had ANY issues with my Motorola Surfboard 5100 modem, which I own, and save $5 a month with RCN.

Overall customer service, is very helpful, but you have to watch out to make sure they are doing things according to spec. Kudos to the cable modem team, for running a tight ship. I like the responsiveness of replies, and have helped the Cable modem team on occasion diagnose some issues in the area.

All and all, RCN is now worth the money, I only pay $115 for 2 TVs, Internet, and local phone.

1/10/03: I have had 7 techs out since I started service in Sept. They replaced the lines and everything. I even bought my own modem to use on the network. I was not able to get a solid cable light for 3 months in a row. At this point, it seems to be fixed. I had to end up going alll the way to the top of the RCN food chain to get my problems resolved. I just got a call recently from the operations manager of the RCN netowrk in Queens. They are monitoring my connection to make sure I don't have any downtime. I had constant downtime for 2 weeks a while back.

They blocked my node from accessing Newsgroups, and still charge me full price. I talked to RCN support and they said they would credit me 1 month of cable internet service for all the troubles I have had over the past 5 months, and that has not happened. So this company is full of broken promises and half truths. If you have a good connection with them, you are lucky. If not, like me your experience will be utter hell. I hope they don't raise the rates too much whe my year deal is up. If they do, I will complian about how horrible the service has been since the get go.

They send us advertisements offering new services, but we are already customers and not eligible for the promotion, so why waste the paper and send us the mailings.

»/quality/nil/1259432
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Doctor Ping Score 69.20
Doctor Ping Score 63.80
Doctor Ping Score 64.60
Doctor Ping Score 68.70
Doctor Ping Score 102.80
Doctor Ping Score 59.60
Doctor Ping Score 63.70
Doctor Ping Score 75.10
Doctor Ping Score 73.30
Doctor Ping Score 70.00

Ever since that point on Sept 26th, I have never has so many problem with RCN cable.

I have to admit their bundled package was cheap, 2 TVs with basic cable (no converter needed) saves $6 a month each, Local Phone with same # as before for $20 unlimited to the 5 boroughs on NYC, regional 5c a min, no Long Distance (since we use cards to call LD anyway)

Total for the whole package with a base of $75 comes out to $95 with the $20 the govt gets in taxes. All and all , I think this is a great deal.

My old bill was for $150 with all the mentioned stuff. I even save $5 a month by using my own cable modem which I bought on Ebay for $50, the same type as TW the RCA 245R.

Great Choice if you have it in your area, but only in the 2 way cable modem markets though.

5000/800 Down /Up speed
4 emails (con need to be called into the head office to setup)
10 Mb webspace per mailbox
Usage checked for mail and ftp

7/18/04

Routing issues are a constant pain. Sometimes it takes 3 mins or more to resolve the DNS. I have had 3 cable modems on this line since install about 10 months ago. I have had over 15 techs out to my house to fix various problems. Many of these issues have not bee resolved to this day. If I were you I would stick with TW, much more expensive, but hey you get what you pay for, but in the case of RCN, you DON"T get what you pay for.

member for 12 years, 3490 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 69 days ago

Comments:
dplantz

join:2000-08-02
Roslindale, MA

Get a new modem and you will have faster speeds

They are discontinuing the older 1.1.1 spec modems. If its rented go to the nearest office and get a 2.0 or newer modem. Order a 3.0 spec modem if you own it. I recommend the the motorola modems. I got mine from Amazon Your modem is the cause of slower speeds with RCN

Review by timmay_lars See Profile

  • Location: West Roxbury,Suffolk,MA
  • Cost: $127 per month (36 month contract)
  • Install: about 7 days
Good "Unlimited usage, great performance, good reliability, static IP service."
Bad "price goes up over contract, support is poor when service is down"
Overall "good value for price, great reliable service - tech support room for improvement"
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection Reliability:
Tech Support:
Services:
Value for money:
(ratings match consensus)

Recently upgraded our service to 110Mb/s downstream. Tested it at 66Mb/s downstream - closer to 110Mb/s distributed across multiple systems.

Huge performance improvement on video (VUDU) 1080p while gaming and downloading data. Prior we would often have annoying buffering when our tech savvy family of 4 used the various internet apps.

The service has been very reliable over the past few years. (estimate 99.9% uptime) But the one day a year it is down - tech support is awful. Tech Support will usually claim it must be an issue with the customer's end - and suggest many silly actions like replacing the modem. Typically waiting 24 hours is all that's needed - but the other 364 days out of the year service is perfect!

Overall I would say I'm very happy with RCN, primarily because it is Unlimited, High-bandwidth, and very reliable.


member for 11.1 years, 85 visits, last login: 60 days ago
updated 82 days ago

Comments:

Review by steve1111 See Profile

  • Location: New York,New York,NY
  • Cost: $40 per month
Good "reliable cable internet"
Pre Sales information:
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Connection Reliability:
Tech Support:
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Value for money:
(ratings above consensus)

Cable at 50mbs.

Negatives:

It took two visits to install cable internet and two visits to install phone. For the first visit for each occasion, the technician arrived late and did not work.

Technical support seems to be in India. Most of the technical support provided has been good. But these are jobs for Americans which should not have been outsourced. Also sometimes I cannot understand people speaking English with Indian accents.

It is annoying that RCN tacked on a one dollar charge for paying online.

Positives:

No fixed-term contract with penalties.

The sales staff gave me a good promotional package and, at the end of the year, Customer Support gave me another good package. The staff have been polite, friendly and professional. The phone service has always worked well and I remember only three internet outages.

I switched over to RCN from Verizon more than a year ago and I am so pleased I did so. I considered Verizon FIOS but thought that it was too expensive for my needs.

Given the monthly cost and quality of the service and quality of the staff I have been more than satisfied with RCN.

'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''
amended November 2011. RCN have come up with a new bundle, $50 plus charges, that is $65. With the one dollar charge for paying online it is $66. Not pleased about RCN's rate increase in a Recession. But Verizon and Time Warner charge even more..

amended December 2011. Now that there is an uproar that Verizon has tacked on a two dollar charge for paying online, perhaps there will also be an uproar that RCN has a one dollar charge for paying online.

amended February 2012. RCN have upgraded Internet service to 25mb download. For Free! Hooray!

amended May 2012. It has been a long long time since I've needed to call for technical support. Time Warner had a promotion in the neighborhood and offered to knock a few dollars from the price. I decided to stay with RCN because RCN promised no rate increase, because the Internet and Phone service has been so completely reliable and because I have found the staff at RCN to be so nice and professional.

amended July 2012. RCN now provides tech support from Pennsylvania instead of India. A wise decision. They have such pleasant and competent tech support people and I feel more confident. Bravo. I've just bumped up their score for tech support to 100 percent.

amended December 2012. Phone and Internet service went down for a few days because of Hurricane Sandy. All is now well. RCN is doing a good job.

NYC December 1 2013 RCN has continued to provide good service.

NYC July 9 2014. Without notification or my consent RCN has discontinued my copper wire POTS phone and replaced it with Home Digital Phone. The phone was working well on Friday afternoon. On Saturday night I discovered that my RCN Phone service had stopped working. The error message said "There may be a receiver off the hook". Hook my foot! After some initial troubleshooting I called RCN support who told me they would send round a technician who was going to install a Home Digital Phone. I told the representative that I did not want a Home Digital Phone and that I wanted my copper-wire service to be restored. She told me that this was not possible. So I allowed the technician to visit. He took out the old modem and plugged in a new modem. WAN comes in, Ethernet and Phone come out. Phone piggybacks on Internet. Internet outage means phone outage. My confidence and trust in RCN have gone way down and I am considering my options. I do not consider my current bundle to be value for money and I am downgrading my rating for RCN.

NYC August 5 2014. Cancelling Phone from my Phone plus Internet bundle was as difficult as separating Siamese twins. It took a few calls to RCN but finally they agreed to let me keep my Internet at a fair price. Also I upgraded from 25 to 50mbps.




member for 5.2 years, 629 visits, last login: 3 days ago
updated 134 days ago

Comments:

btoan

@173.56.44.x

RCN sliding

I'm with you. I've been with RCN for about twelve years, but something has changed upstairs and cost cutting has affected service and price. First, the quote above for internet of $66 is way off in my experience. I started with bundled service - phone, tv, internet - for about $145 - $160, but when I reduced services to only internet my monthly charge became $104! That's for internet alone! I'm sure all cable companies are suffering in this way, since people are opting not to have a land line, and realize they can watch all their TV via the internet, but that price is still way too much.

My own personal gripe with RCN was that I am renting out my apartment for two years while I care for my mother, but RCN would not allow me to keep my email address in the meantime unless my tenant conitnued with the service, which they were not interested in. Customer service told me in the spring that they had a plan where I could keep my email address for $3.95/mo, but when I called to disconnect service and sign up for the continued email, I was told that was no longer available, and was in fact not even available when the agent told me it was. Customer service, and their training has slid recently. One thing I loved about RCN was that their service agents all spoke English as a first language. That is no longer true, and half of what the agent said to me I could not understand. My assumption (and this sounds horribly prejudiced on my part) is that they are paying less for agents, or are doing a poorer job of training and screening them.

RCN used to bend over backwards to make things right - if they could have made an allowance for me to keep my address - as they are currently to all those customers who have that option grandfathered in - then they would have kept me as a customer because I would have naturally resumed service for another twelve years or longer when I moved back in. Now, not having that email address any more, I am free to shop around which I will, especially since they screwed me with the mis-information and overcharged me for the last six months.

btoan

@100.2.214.x

Re: RCN sliding

Update 7/20/14
Well, shut my mouth! RCN contacted me and corrected my complaint. It turns out I CAN keep my email address as first explained. A very nice agent took my call and while he said he had never performed this particular service, it took him about five minutes to perform. So now my only issue is with the agent and the supervisor who earlier this week gave me incorrect information and their apparent lack of training. Time for a memo at customer service!

Review by cdr1000 See Profile

  • Location: Forest Hills,Queens,NY
  • Cost: $79 per month
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "Price"
Bad "They need A LOT of pressure when you ask them to fix your service"
Overall "We would like them to stay in business"
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(ratings match consensus)

Nothing changed at RCN... since 2001

Poor quality technical support, poor quality billing, poor quality customer retention policies.

Download speed is only 16-17 Mbps on a 50 Mbps connection.



member for 10.8 years, 1866 visits, last login: 2 days ago
updated 180 days ago

Comments:






Review by HarryTorres See Profile

  • Location: Allentown,Lehigh,PA
  • Cost Contract price not specified.
Pre Sales information:
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(ratings above consensus)

I currently have 75/15 service from RCN, with a Cisco DPC3010 modem.

member for 13 years, 1772 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 200 days ago

Comments:






Review by rky_81 See Profile

  • Location: USA
  • Cost: $130 per month
  • Install: about 10 days
Good "Cheaper the rivals. TIVO is awesome."
Bad "Not as many features as bigger competitors"
Overall "So far very satisfied with their service. "
Pre Sales information:
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(ratings match consensus)

I switched from Verizon to RCN. Was not satisfied with Verizon, especially when they increased their prices of set top boxes within 3 months of signing a 2 year contract. When I called the customer service about the increase I was told that I cannot cancel my service without a penalty even though they increased the price. So I waited 1.5 years and cancelled the moment my contract has ended. I don't mind paying a little more as long as the companies are transparent about it. I really don't want to go to Comcast, but luckily my area has RCN too. I thought I will give it a try.

Installation took some time, a little more than expected. Got the TIVO package and I can't believe that I have been paying $28 / month for junk boxes from Verizon. It's been 15 days and so far no issues with internet and TV. At this point, I have nothing to complain about. Got the 50/10 internet package and so far got consistent speeds in the 40 -50 mbps range over wifi. I am getting very good netflix streaming which was awful with verizon.

My only disappointment is they don't have as many options as Verizon or comcast.

member for 237 days, 15 visits, last login: 198 days ago
lodged 237 days ago

Comments:

Review by jsullvn See Profile

  • Location: Jim Thorpe,Carbon,PA
  • Cost: $49 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 3 days
Good "Ease of order process, install time, service good."
Overall "Recommend"
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nice

member for 13.8 years, 842 visits, last login: 7 days ago
updated 362 days ago

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Review by Pacomartin See Profile

  • Location: Bethlehem,Northampton,PA
  • Cost Contract price not specified.
  • Install: about 10 days
Good "Excellent Service, good value for money"
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
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RCN, was sold to the private equity firm ABRY Partners in March 2010. You should consider reviews older than that to be obsolete.

member for 1.7 years, 558 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 1.1 years ago

Comments: