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Comments on news posted 2013-01-31 18:22:26: Comcast finished their digital conversion in 2012 after starting it in 2009, and had been giving users a free digital converter so they could continue to watch programming without interruption. ..


FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

1 edit

I returned mine and and had $2 pulled from the bill

It used to be free and I had mine for a few years without charges. But then they started charging for it. I no longer used it so I returned mine and had the $2 pulled from the bill. And then I got pissed & complained about it to the local Comcast rep and he sent me to the retention dept where I got a $15/mo credit applied for a year. So in the end it is saving me $17/mo. Comcast should have left well enough alone.
--
A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public treasury.

tshirt
Premium,MVM
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:4
Reviews:
·Comcast

Re: I returned mine and and had $2 pulled from the bill

Mine are going back tomorrow, was being charged for both and HD fee on both despite repeated assurances to just hold on to them (neither has ever been used, one is still sealed in the shipping box.)
My "Guaranteed" sub $85 blast plus HD hit $97 for 2 months now, which is NOT what we ( Me and the desk guy at the service center) talked about.

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK
Wonder how many people who always are resigned to cable bill increases won't notice and just be paying from now until __________ for something they are not using.

Trust me, it will happen. Then will come the lawsuit(s)....
--
"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power." -- Benito Mussolini

FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

3 recommendations

Re: I returned mine and and had $2 pulled from the bill

said by KrK:

Wonder how many people who always are resigned to cable bill increases won't notice and just be paying from now until __________ for something they are not using.

Trust me, it will happen. Then will come the lawsuit(s)....

Before I retired and was working 60 hr weeks and on call 24 x 7 I probably wouldn't have taken the time and energy to correct this. But now that I have free time, I follow up on these small ripoffs and fight them.
--
A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public treasury.

Corehhi

join:2002-01-28
Bluffton, SC

1 recommendation

said by KrK:

Wonder how many people who always are resigned to cable bill increases won't notice and just be paying from now until __________ for something they are not using.

Trust me, it will happen. Then will come the lawsuit(s)....

That's why companies love if you sign up to have your bill automatically taken out of your checking account. You might not notice forever.

Morac
Cat god

join:2001-08-30
Riverside, NJ
kudos:1
I returned mine last month. Comcast charged me a $2 service change fee to do so. Can't win either way.

insomniac
Oh Yeah
Premium
join:2002-09-22
Naperville, IL
Reviews:
·Comcast

Re: I returned mine and and had $2 pulled from the bill

I returned one of mine in December, but I continued to get billed for it. Got that fixed... and then I got charged the $1.99 service change fee. You're right, can't win.

The other one is going back shortly. I've decided I just don't need cable on every TV if I'm going to be charged for every damn outlet.
--
If everything seems to be going well, you've obviously overlooked something.

tc1uscg

join:2005-03-09
Saint Clair Shores, MI
said by Morac:

I returned mine last month. Comcast charged me a $2 service change fee to do so. Can't win either way.

Then why not walk in and hand them a made up invoice and charge them an “inconvenience fee”? There used to be services centers all over the place, now, I have to drive 10 miles to the nearest one. There were 2 within 5 miles 2 years ago. Therefore, I’m having to drive further because they can have a truck drop by and pick it up. All’s fair. A fuel surcharge, a inconvenience fee, even a nuisance fee. If anything, you will confuse the hell out of the lady behind the bullet proof glass.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Nasty

This is a pretty slimy tactic, considering a lot of people grabbed ones they didn't really need when they rolled them out.
Zoder

join:2002-04-16
Miami, FL

1 edit

2 recommendations

Re: Nasty

There's several issues I brought up in the Comcast forum when this first surfaced.

With all of the DTAs purchased, Comcast saved billions of dollars by going the digital migration route instead of upgrading all plants to 1 ghz or more. They also saved money by getting the FCC to give a waiver on the separable security mandate for the DTAs.

Now that they have a huge install base hooked on them, they go for an easy profit stream. After the year or so it will take to break even on the wholesale cost, Comcast will be making 100% on the millions of these deployed in the field every single month.

The worst part is they are so cheap but we have no way to purchase them out right. Customers are going to be paying for them many times over through a DTAs lifetime.

Then they could allow customers who have QAM tuners in their tvs to watch the channels a DTA decrypts without a box but they are eliminating Clear QAM to keep from having to install filters and cut down on theft of service. Another money saving tactic that they are making the customer pay for by having to rent a DTA instead of letting their TV do the work.

Also, Comcast has stated the charge consists of 50 cents for the DTA and $1.49 for a digital outlet. This shows perfectly how much of a scam the whole "digital outlet" charge is. It's clearly been designed as a system to work around the FCC's customer owned equipment rule. Since Comcast has to issue a credit for the equipment part of the charge for these customers.

Oh no customer, we're only charging you $2.50 for the equipment. It doesn't matter if it's an SD, HD or DVR box. The equipment is just $2.50. It's the "outlet" that you are paying $7+ for.

Yet here we see the outlet charge is only $1.49. It's the same outlet and if you have digital starter, the same channels.

Since the difference in price is so minimal between renting an STB and the credit you get for owning, this also incentivises customers to stick with the Comcast leased equipment vs buying their own and using a cablecard. This is certainly not what the FCC intended.
Mr Matt

join:2008-01-29
Eustis, FL
kudos:1
Reviews:
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Re: Nasty

I am particularly irritated because I replaced two televisions in 2011 in guest bedrooms so visitors could watch TV without interfering with our viewing. At that time it was not necessary to use a STB to receive 70 extended basic channels. Then Comcast cut it down to 21 limited basic channels. Now it is 0 channels. In view of the fact that our lawmakers are corrupt do not expect to see any action to resolve this gouging. I am sure that Comcast will continue to raise prices on the DTA's until consumers are paying $5.00 or more per month without being able to view all programming that they are paying for. I cannot justify paying $9.95 plus tax per month for an HD STB that is only used a couple of weeks per year.

swintec
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join:2003-12-19
Alfred, ME
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Re: Nasty

said by Mr Matt:

I am particularly irritated because I replaced two televisions in 2011 in guest bedrooms so visitors could watch TV without interfering with our viewing. At that time it was not necessary to use a STB to receive 70 extended basic channels. Then Comcast cut it down to 21 limited basic channels. Now it is 0 channels....

Well, you could always switch to that service that doesnt use boxes like satellite telco tv..oh wait none do anymore. Not sure why someone would really be upset over this. I look at TV without a box / dta (analog channels) as maybe a little benefit they extended to customers but it is time to move on and free up the bandwidth for more services.

Do you get disgruntled that DirectTV or Dish do not allow you to watch TV without a box or have you just always accepted it?
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Mr Matt

join:2008-01-29
Eustis, FL
kudos:1
Reviews:
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Re: Nasty

I did not just accept the fact that the DBS providers required customers to rent a Satellite Receiver for each television. I did not switch to satellite for just that reason. Back in the 90's consumers went to their local electronics store and purchased as many satellite receivers as they needed. The DBS provider arranged for installation. The customer did not rent their DBS receivers. At one time some television manufactures included satellite receivers in their high end projection television sets.

Then the DBS providers decided to price their service more like digital cable so they rented their DBS receivers. That was the excuse that some cable companies used to justify charging per outlet so they would have parity with the DBS providers.

Since the cable pigs are requiring a DTA for every television, customers no longer have the advantage of installing televisions capable of receiving extended basic cable without a STB at no charge. Before the DTA requirement a customer could receive extended basic channels on infrequently used cable ready television sets at no additional monthly charge. One of the reasons I stuck with cable was that ability. Anyone that is pissed off at their cable service provider should switch to DBS just so the cable pigs can no longer get their money. I am considering switching to DBS even if the cost is a little higher to stop feeding the cable pig.

Corehhi

join:2002-01-28
Bluffton, SC

Re: Nasty

Mr. Matt wrong very wrong. People were hacking the boxes at a huge rate there was a whole industry going on, the boxes weren't hacked but the cards were. The sat companies charged you $4.95 for ever extra receiver you had if I remember right, they were not free. Of course if you had a hacked card you used your good cam number for the other cards oh wait a minute, never mine how all that worked. You did by the boxes but they had to program the cards for you for ever receiver unless you wanted to run off of one receiver and only watch one channel at a time.
Mr Matt

join:2008-01-29
Eustis, FL
kudos:1
Reviews:
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Re: Nasty

The cable service I subscribe to started to gouge customers before I subscribed to service. They originally included one digital STB in the price of digital service. If the subscriber added a DVR they paid for the DVR and still were entitled to a no charge STB. My cable service provider started gouging by eliminating the no charge STB and charging full price for the DVR, no credit for the STB if a subscriber added a DVR. If you subscribed to two DVR's you were charged for two DVR's you did not get a no charge STB or a credit for the one that was not supplied. Just another way to gouge customers.

You mention that the first receiver a DBS provider is included in the cost of basic service. Additional receivers incur additional charges. At least the DBS service providers provide one receiver in the cost of programming.
Skippy25

join:2000-09-13
Hazelwood, MO
The charging per receiver when you owned them was a scam to begin with.

It took $0 more dollars for them to deliver you signal to 1 TV or 10.

Just like the HD fee used and the fact that Dish charges $10 (at the time I was with them) just so you can have the component connection on the STB enabled.

Bottom line is that these people make up fees that have no relation to cost and they know we have to pay it because we dont have a much of a choice.

Corehhi

join:2002-01-28
Bluffton, SC

Re: Nasty

said by Skippy25:

The charging per receiver when you owned them was a scam to begin with.

It took $0 more dollars for them to deliver you signal to 1 TV or 10.

Just like the HD fee used and the fact that Dish charges $10 (at the time I was with them) just so you can have the component connection on the STB enabled.

Bottom line is that these people make up fees that have no relation to cost and they know we have to pay it because we dont have a much of a choice.

I know they are always looking to bump up your bill. My local cable company actually gives you a STB that blocks out the HD channels which ironicly I receive since I simply just plug my TV into the cable, the HDTV channels are there at least the locals but they want an up charge for a HD box which you don't need at all. LOL. That make sense???

AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1
said by swintec:

I look at TV without a box / dta (analog channels) as maybe a little benefit they extended to customers but it is time to move on and free up the bandwidth for more services.

I get 0 channels if I plug my analog TV in. I never bothered to try to plug in a digital TV.
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Corehhi

join:2002-01-28
Bluffton, SC

Re: Nasty

said by AVD:

said by swintec:

I look at TV without a box / dta (analog channels) as maybe a little benefit they extended to customers but it is time to move on and free up the bandwidth for more services.

I get 0 channels if I plug my analog TV in. I never bothered to try to plug in a digital TV.

If I plug in a DTV I get all the locals in HD plus another mix of analog and music channels. Just hit auto program and see what comes up.
alexintexas

join:2003-01-11
San Antonio, TX
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
said by Mr Matt:

I am particularly irritated because I replaced two televisions in 2011 in guest bedrooms so visitors could watch TV without interfering with our viewing. At that time it was not necessary to use a STB to receive 70 extended basic channels. Then Comcast cut it down to 21 limited basic channels. Now it is 0 channels. In view of the fact that our lawmakers are corrupt do not expect to see any action to resolve this gouging. I am sure that Comcast will continue to raise prices on the DTA's until consumers are paying $5.00 or more per month without being able to view all programming that they are paying for. I cannot justify paying $9.95 plus tax per month for an HD STB that is only used a couple of weeks per year.

so what would your recommendation be?

have 1,2,15,25,50,100,200 analog channels?
then in that case have 1/2 your subscriber base stealing the service and screw the signal levels for everyone else = 1000's of un needed service calls/visits

go back to 1990 with 70 analog channels and 256kb internet if your lucky, no phone service, no dvr, no on demand and still have major signal issues due to theft of service

who pays for the upfront cost of equipment????
cable co are not going to eat these cost's and now due to content providers continued path of programming rate hikes. cable gets less and less profit. so now to keep those profits they jack the rental on equipment

you can build your own dvr box and put in the cable card/s
but even for a 3 tv setup the upfront cost are VERY high for most US consumers.

so i again ask you what is your recommendation?
Mr Matt

join:2008-01-29
Eustis, FL
kudos:1
Reviews:
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Re: Nasty

REGULATION is the answer. Up until last year I could receive up to around 70 channels without additional equipment on a cable ready television set. That was fine for guests that wanted to catch up on the news or cartoons for the kids. We are back to the pre Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of 1992.

There was an article about why the act was made law. Some congressmen and senators were pissed off because they could purchase a cable ready television and not use the remote control because they had to rent a descrambling converter to watch programming on each television. That was the main reason that the Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of 1992 was passed. The lawmakers got tired of being screwed by the cable industry. The cable companies were only allowed to scramble premium and pay per view programming.

One solution would be to regulate the price of equipment to descramble an encrypted signal. The cable company could charge a one time right to use fee and no monthly fee. Ownership and maintenance cost would be the responsibility of the cable company. An incentive to keep the equipment in good condition would be to return part of the right to use fee if the customer cancelled service. The DTA's should be provided at a low cost say $25.00 with no monthly charge. Ownership would be retained by the cable company. The DTA would have to be returned when service was discontinued. Cable companies should be prohibited from charging for each outlet.

I would be satisfied if I could purchase a STB at best buy or any other store, that accommodated one cable card and did not require that I paid a monthly fee for that outlet. Do not expect to have any relief on this gouging since the cable industry is paying off our corrupt lawmakers to screw their constituents.
Joe12345678

join:2003-07-22
Des Plaines, IL

Re: Nasty

in canada you can buy the box with out the outlet or mirroring fees. Some systems even have rent to own as well.

swintec
Premium,VIP
join:2003-12-19
Alfred, ME
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Reviews:
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said by Mr Matt:

Up until last year I could receive up to around 70 channels without additional equipment on a cable ready television set.

Yeas and? This is the result of technology and progress. They want the reclaimed bandwidth for advanced services with a bit of security sprinkled in. Satellite and TelcoTV got a free pass, cable should be under the same deal here.
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alexintexas

join:2003-01-11
San Antonio, TX
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
said by Mr Matt:

REGULATION is the answer.

REGULATION really??? you 100% sure about that...Pots is a fine example why government intervention is not needed, ah but wait you do come up with an idea.

said by Mr Matt:

One solution would be to regulate the price of equipment to descramble an encrypted signal. The cable company could charge a one time right to use fee and no monthly fee. Ownership and maintenance cost would be the responsibility of the cable company. An incentive to keep the equipment in good condition would be to return part of the right to use fee if the customer cancelled service. The DTA's should be provided at a low cost say $25.00 with no monthly charge. Ownership would be retained by the cable company

you still fail on answering, who pays the upfront costs of said equipment? Someone pays it, its not the cable company, its not our government..then you go on to say the cable co keeps paying to maintain it ------never going to happen

said by Mr Matt:

I would be satisfied if I could purchase a STB at best buy or any other store, that accommodated one cable card.

sure this is a fantastic idea however @ $600 per STB or upto $1200 per dvr? how many subscribers do you think will dole this out? you wouldnt. lets not forget you still would pay to lease said cable card per device.

one simple solution, CUT THE DAMN CORD!!! take that $1200+ per year you would save.

todays day an age there are way to many other streaming options to many to list.

another solution have the government REMOVE cable companies and content providers from ever being publicly traded companies, this however is a pipe dream
Zoder

join:2002-04-16
Miami, FL

Re: Nasty

In what world would a DVR cost $1200 in a healthy retail market? You're talking about a QAM tuner, processors, and hard drive. Not exactly state of the art technology. It would quickly become a commodity item.
alexintexas

join:2003-01-11
San Antonio, TX
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

Re: Nasty

actually it wouldnt think about it,,,,also best buy and others need to make $$$ so yes that would be the cost per device believe it or not its reality..cable co's buy DIRECT from a manufacturer and in HUGE BULK not one by one nor do they deal with retailers

you obviously have no clue on manufacturing and costs involved in it..it entails huge amounts of $$$$ in R&D before anything is even manufactured once they do get a baseline they pay another large amount of $$$$ to build and test it,,,and they find problems thus more R&D and modifications which cost more money

the PS3 is an example look what the system cost the first 5+ years Sony "lost" money on every single unit sold and gambled on the hopes that they could make it up in accessory sales. i might add the ps3 was not cheap. Sony is not the only ones look at the "iphone" $450 bucks starting. my HTC sensation cost me $525, once a manufacturer recovers its costs in initial R&D etc they might lower the price however......

now an STB manufacturer is not going to lose money on this venture and then retailers need their cut as well, so we would be lucky to see no more then 3 total manufacturers building them
Zoder

join:2002-04-16
Miami, FL

Re: Nasty

The PS3 used a state of the art processor that Sony spend years developing.

I look at it like this. You have two main players in the STB market. Both refuse to sell their products at retail. They sell to the cable companies wholesale and set whatever price they want. That is not a real market price, it's a duopoly market price. The cable companies than pass this along to their customers in high monthly fees. The testing you are referring to is because they want a standard platform for their market so they have the manufacturer make custom changes that need to be tested extensively before it can be rolled out to millions of customers. If there was an open standard, not a locked down standard controlled by CableLabs, you could hook whatever device you wanted to the cable and innovation and competition would thrive.

What exactly is this highly innovative technology in a DVR that huge amounts of R&D is being spent on? It was innovative when TIVO developed it over a decade ago. What's changed? A faster processor, a bigger harddrive, and in some cases more tuners. We're not talking about an iphone which is constantly refreshed with new technology every year.

So yes, under the byzantine system Moto, Cisco, and the cable industry currently have in place, a retail box probably would end up being over priced. But it would be due to manipulating the market and not the reality of the technology in a DVR.

Now ideally, something like Allvid would become a standard. All incoming signals whether they be cable, telco, or satellite would be converted at the entry into the home into IP which any device in your home could understand. Then you could hook up a tv, stb, tablet, smartphone, dvr, computer, etc... driving down costs and letting the customer own their own video equipment.
alexintexas

join:2003-01-11
San Antonio, TX
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

Re: Nasty

your reply clearly shows you dont know the costs involved in manufacturing and or what it takes or costs to make it a reality. and its in ANY manufacturing not just "dvr's," phones etc. how much do you think Sony paid in R&D for the chip? and that is ONE part.
.
STB makers make and do specification's to whatever cable company wants/needs is buying them not what the manufacturer puts out, thus cable pays most/all R&D cable co's dont want consumers owning them for many reasons 1. being theft of service.

actually cable cos could care less if they didnt fear the content providers, over skipping ads, copy protection etc etc etc so blame the wonderful content providers for no consumer end dvr's or STB's

how much did tivos cost when first released???? again not cheap and still not cheap. and still controlled by tivo due to the content providers

also in many markets today content providers are demanding the cable co to block 3rd party cable card recording, and in a couple of markets all channels are blocked.
Zoder

join:2002-04-16
Miami, FL

1 edit

Re: Nasty

DVRs have been ruled legal by the courts. The FCC's official policy is that customers should be able to own STB's if they so choose. Content providers might not like them, but they couldn't stop them if they were sold directly to the public. Content providers cannot force cable cos to block 3rd party cable card recording if they allow 1st party recording. The whole point of the FCC's separable security mandate is that everything is treated equal regarding security whether it's cable owned or customer owned.

You brought up the PS3. I was trying to say that Sony did spend a huge amount of money developing the chip and that it was state of the art technology at the time it was released. You are trying to compare that to the technology inside a DVR which in 2013 is standard tech and not cuttting edge. Adding a faster processor following Moore's law and a bigger harddrive does not make it state of the art justifying a retail cost anywhere close to $1200. The bill of materials is likely a few hundred max.

Retail margins on consumer electronics is low which is why stores like best buy push the accessories and extended warranty when you buy CE items in the store. The markup on those items is high.

Regardigng the phones, I would say the market is a little distorted on that front. Since most phones are bought with subsidies the manufacturers are able to demand a higher price point from the carriers then woud otherwise be the case if the phones were all sold entirely at retail with no subsidy. Under those conditions it would be subject to supply and demand. If most people are willing to pay $600+ for a phone the prices would stay at that level. If not, the manufacturers would have to lower the price and their margins on the phones. Apple doesn't have huge profits each qtr because the markup is low. People want the iphone at the subsidized price in droves and Apple can then set the price the carriers have to pay very high.
alexintexas

join:2003-01-11
San Antonio, TX
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

Re: Nasty

said by Zoder:

DVRs have been ruled legal by the courts. The FCC's official policy is that customers should be able to own STB's if they so choose. Content providers might not like them, but they couldn't stop them if they were sold directly to the public. Content providers cannot force cable cos to block 3rd party cable card recording if they allow 1st party recording. The whole point of the FCC's separable security mandate is that everything is treated equal regarding security whether it's cable owned or customer owned.

read around where tivos and pc tuners are sold, cable operators are blocking of recording channels at the demand of content provides. you keep citing 10+ year FCC laws that no longer apply to current tech. todays FCC is 2000% useless so stop citing it because 1 content provider has the money to fight any FCC ruling, and i dont care about 10 year old FCC laws, nor does cable co much less content providers,

CONTENT PROVIDERS dont want a consumer grade dvr to enable copying THEIR content to other mediums or devices and guess what that is a FCC law older then anyone law you been citing and a cable co or content provider would win in court over it period

said by Zoder:

You brought up the PS3. I was trying to say that Sony did spend a huge amount of money developing the chip and that it was state of the art technology at the time it was released. You are trying to compare that to the technology inside a DVR which in 2013 is standard tech and not cuttting edge. Adding a faster processor following Moore's law and a bigger harddrive does not make it state of the art justifying a retail cost anywhere close to $1200. The bill of materials is likely a few hundred max

here we go beating this dead horse again

i said "initial" R&D the costs involved.....

i work and have worked in manufacturing for 10 years currently working in a company that makes soda dispensing machines. their top contractor, a top soda maker in the US decided they wanted a whole new machine,,they spent 2 years in R&D before anything was made, when it came time to start production the tools to make the plastic parts alone cost over $1 million, they also paid another million on a molding machine needed this is/was only a small part of expenditures. and in only one department.

this top soda maker said get the product out so they did, in lab testing found MANY problem's, they wanted it out in use so my employer did a 100 unit test bed in high volume stores, in the first 6 months over 1/2 the units failed in field and kept failing.

the soda maker in the end fired top level management, spent over $250 million yes you read that correct and scraped the whole project. and only 100 units + testing units where ever made out of this tiny venture this i might add happened in the early 90's

so at that kind of $$$ and no advertising or marketing costs got involved, how many years do you think it takes to recoup the initial costs?

auto manufactures is another fine example and why cars/trucks are not redesigned no less then 5 years and many every 10..

a VCR when it first came out in 1970 it cost $2100 bucks and even through out the mid 70's - 80 the costs where still about $800

what did DVD players cost the first 5 years? cd players?

once a product is produced now comes marketing cost, advertising cost, another small fortune tacked onto said product

also many retailers markup to 50% on certain items

considerthis

@comcast.net
What no one is considering is that equipment has to be manufactured to operate on the local system infrastructure. Even the cable companies cannot transfer equipment from a SA market to a Motorola market because the backend equipment is not compatible. To make a truly "universal" decoder would require a rebuild of basically every market in the country. Who would you propose pay for this rebuild? I'm sure your answer is the cable company, but reality is that no company is going to spend that kind of money for no return on investment.

As to the "retail" box market, at one time Motorola tried this and had little interest in purchasing it. Cable modems are a great example, most people pay the rental fee rather than buying their own. This may not be true of people on DSLR, but for the majority it is. It's easy to claim that a privately owned market would thrive, but I again disagree because after someone had a surge that killed their box 2 months after they bought it they would then find the value in rental equipment. This is much the reason that many people don't buy their own modems, it's a great deal if your modem lasts two years, but if it gets fried inside six months then you were better off with a rental.

Finally, as someone who has worked in the service side of cable, I can speak firsthand of the additional costs that come with customer owned equipment. With company owned equipment it's a no questions asked swap. Those who own their own equipment are insistent that the problem is not their modem and frequently require 2-4 service calls before they accept it. At the same time the customer does not want to pay for the repeated service calls because they shouldn't have to. I've even heard the argument that the modem is in warranty, so it should be covered but they are unwilling to understand that their warranty is with Motorola not the cable company. Compare this to any other industry, for example if you go to the doctor, you are charged for the office visit and any additional fees required for the diagnosis. Should you decide to get a second opinion you will then will again pay those fees. You can substitute the word doctor for almost anything such as, auto mechanic, HVAC technician, etc. The cable business is one of the few industries where the consumer believes they shouldn't have to pay anything to get the cable guy to their house. They do not consider that a $50 fee doesn't even cover the $100 it takes to get the vehicle and the tech to your home.

••••

r81984
Fair and Balanced
Premium
join:2001-11-14
Katy, TX
Reviews:
·row44
Outlets are free as houses are pre-wired.
Comcast just has to plug into a homes splitter.

So if they said $1.50 per outlet and they did not install your outlet then they should take the $1.50 off per converter and you should only have to pay the $.50.
--
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••••

hambone42
Peace, through superior firepower
Premium
join:2002-02-02
Manassas, VA
Reviews:
·Comcast
said by Zoder:

(snip)

Oh no customer, we're only charging you $2.50 for the equipment. It doesn't matter if it's an SD, HD or DVR box. The equipment is just $2.50. It's the "outlet" that you are paying $7+ for.

Yet here we see the outlet charge is only $1.49. It's the same outlet and if you have digital starter, the same channels.

(snip)

That's the part that frosts me the most. I'm moving into a new house and am paying for all of the interior TV and network cabling. Except for the extremely small marginal cost of the extra power to boost the signal entering my home, my additional outlets cost Comcast nothing from an infrastructure perspective. I doubt they cost Comcast anything from a licensing perspective, either.

This reminds me -- they still haven't fixed my billing to credit me for their box that I turned in and replaced with a TiVO two months ago. If they start charging me for the DTA's that were supposed to be free, I'll be turning those in and going OTA for those TV's.

When does Consumerist's "Worst Company in America" start up again?
--
Sarcasm is the Body's Natural Defense Against Stupidity
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
The incentive to own your own MCE PC is pretty big when you can scale it out to 6 simultaneous users and 12 tuners for the price of two additional cable cards. That's way cheaper than crappy Comcast boxes, and most people would only need 4 or 8 tuners.

Also, these things are useless in the first place, as TV without a DVR... what's the point?

As for extra sets... just use MCE for the whole house, and throw a used XBOX with any extra TVs.

Also, there is no big scam to stop people from using CableCards... very, very few people do. They are pretty nice about them, and helpful when getting a self-install CableCard, at least IMO. And, they support ONDemand on TiVos on Moto systems, because then they make a crapton of money off of rentals. They would support it on SA systems if they could figure out how to accept IP input to the VOD system.

They did get rid of the remote control fee... that one was especially egregious, as you couldn't return the remote and not pay the fee, even if you had your own universal remote control.

DVRs don't cost $1200. That's absurd. Even a TiVo with Lifetime, which is a far more capable machine than an RNG200M or DCX3400M, which are Comcast's top Cisco and Moto boxes, respectively, costs less than $1k with a Lifetime subscription.

The "outlet" fees are just disguised box fees, one way or another. It has nothing to do with physical outlets. Heck, with MCE7 you could be running 6 TVs off of one or two "outlets". But they do have the analog cable thing back under control from when people were hooking up a ton of TVs to one subscription and not getting any more revenue for Comcast.

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cdbma

join:2003-01-19
Bolton, MA

got me by the...

I have two analog TVs. I was thrilled when Comcast gave me two DAs for no charge. Well done...or so I thought. Now I'm being charged $2/month for each. If I ditch the DAs, I have to ditch the TVs (I tried a D/A adapter and a DTV antenna - not great). So, I can send a message by returning, but then I'd have to get new DTVs, which would require two STBs - at additional cost.

I'm hosed!

I like the idea of taking them back and seeing if they blink.

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graysonf
Premium,MVM
join:1999-07-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL
kudos:2

Returned to Sender

I took the two free adapters as soon as they announced them several years ago. All I did was activate them and made sure they worked. I never watched TV on them again.

When I saw the upcharge on my last bill, I took them back and got full credit of $3.98 (2@ $1.99 each).

If I have company coming in from out of town I'll just go down to the local service center and pick up a converter and take it back when my guests leave.

jmn1207
Premium
join:2000-07-19
Ashburn, VA
kudos:1

Is this Still Applicable?

»digitalnow.comcast.com/About_Dig···ate.aspx
What will it cost?
Limited Basic only customers are eligible to receive digital adapter service (and digital adapters) for three (3) outlets without additional charge. A digital adapter service charge of $0.50 will apply to each additional outlet for those customers. All other customers are eligible to receive a digital set-top box and service included at no additional charge with their primary outlet, and the digital adapter service charge of $1.99 will apply to each additional digital adapter service outlet (such charges are not applicable for digital adapter service outlets existing on accounts prior to July 1, 2012). Certain markets may have alternative pricing. Enter your unique ID or account number in the Equipment Center log in on the previous page for pricing of your service.

anon anon

@charter.com

Big deal

Everyone and his mother knew that they wouldn't be free forever. It had been stated you get it for 2 years free then you pay $2 a month. So why get mad now? You had 2 years warning. It's kind of like a kid that acts up and the parent tells them if they do it again they'll get spanked and they act up again but are yet somehow totally shocked when they get their ass beat.

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backfeed
is giving feedback

join:2002-12-16
Peru, IN
Reviews:
·Comcast

cost

here is what the website states now...
Well mine are going back.....

What will it cost?
Limited Basic only customers are eligible to receive digital adapter service (and digital adapters) for three (3) outlets without additional charge. A digital adapter service charge of $0.50 will apply to each additional outlet for those customers. All other customers are eligible to receive a digital set-top box and service included at no additional charge with their primary outlet, and the digital adapter service charge of $1.99 will apply to each additional digital adapter service outlet (such charges are not applicable for digital adapter service outlets existing on accounts prior to July 1, 2012). Certain markets may have alternative pricing. Enter your unique ID or account number in the Equipment Center log in on the previous page for pricing of your service.


--
There are 10 types of people. Those who can read Binary and those who cannot.
amungus
Premium
join:2004-11-26
America
Reviews:
·Cox HSI
·KCH Cable

suck

Here's a thought or two.
Cable was originally intended to be easier and better than having an antenna.
Nobody seems to remember or care.

Cable ready was great. Now they have the opportunity to say "look, satellite needs a box too!" ...and pretty much screw everyone into thinking it's needed.

Why even bother with QAM tuners in things anymore? There really needs to be am "addressable" standard tuner, much like a cable modem, if they intend to pull such shit.

No good reason a TV, with no box attached, should not be able to get cable, with 99% of available channels. Arguing about satellite is ridiculous, as the method of receiving is vastly different, and requires retransmission from satellites owned by the provider (or, leased, in directv's case).

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Scree
In the pipe 5 by 5

join:2001-04-24
Mount Laurel, NJ

sad

Well, looks like I'll be returning my 2 DTAs, and dropping down to digital economy level soon. Will probably stick with Blast for now, though, so getting stuff from eztv.it will be quicker. heh
tpkatl

join:2009-11-16
Dacula, GA

Karl, why is this news? On the front page...

This has been going on for at least 4 months; it was commented on in these very forums back in December.

Yes, it is slimy and odious of Comcast to play bait-and-switch, but it isn't news.

Robotics
See You On The Dark Side
Premium
join:2003-10-23
Louisa, VA

FU*K Comcast (and all the others)

This shit is getting old.

I have one of those boxes and was told it would be free forever at the time they gave me the box.
And now they are going to charge for it. lol

Yup, I'm returning mine. I hope a lot of others do to.
Would love to know they have tons of these cheap ass boxes laying around their warehouse collecting Comcrap dust.
--
Long you live and high you fly, and smiles you'll give and tears you'll cry,
and all you touch and all you see, is all your life will ever be.

PeteC2
Got Mouse?
Premium,MVM
join:2002-01-20
Bristol, CT
kudos:6
Reviews:
·Comcast

Re: FU*K Comcast (and all the others)

It would not necessarily surprise me at all if someone inadvertantly told you that. Comcast is a huge company, and not all personnel always seem to get the same message. Not defending that, but just saying that I am not surprised either.

Seriously though, I live in an apartment complex of some 285 units, and I can tell you that Comcast clearly stated to us that the DTAs were free "now", but would have a monthly charge a couple of years down the road.
--
Deeds, not words

Robotics
See You On The Dark Side
Premium
join:2003-10-23
Louisa, VA

Re: FU*K Comcast (and all the others)

Yeah it was one of their reps. over the phone. And I am sure they didn't know the full story (nothing new there), or neglected to mention that fact.
Oh well, I will be returning it anyway. One less TV in the house for now.
--
Long you live and high you fly, and smiles you'll give and tears you'll cry,
and all you touch and all you see, is all your life will ever be.
biochemistry
Premium
join:2003-05-09
92361

Tru2Way

Whatever happened to tru2way? It was supposed to allow for pay-per-view and SDV unlike cablecard. Congress needs to ban the monthly fees for these digtal boxes until such time as an alternative like tru2way becomes available.
TheMayor

join:2002-05-09

Thank you

Well Thank you Comcast, I'm sure my parents will appreciate knowing they will recoop the cost of converting to WMC faster then expected.

joetaxpayer
I'M Here Till Thursday

join:2001-09-07
Sudbury, MA

Streaming / Networking is the answer.

The $7.45 outlet fees can easily fund a home network over time. Whether it's TiVos, Slingboxes, etc, one 4 tuner DVR and a way to use it to view anywhere in the house.
Seeley

join:2009-01-31
Eatontown, NJ

3 edits

Nasty Greed. Ma Bell never pulled this stuff.

Why would a company charge you for a REQUIRED device? Why? Because Comcast is the greediest company on earth. I HATED THIS F__KING COMPANY WITH A PASSION 10 YEARS AGO and now I'm blowing steam out my ears.

Does a supermarket charge customers to use their motorized carts if they need them?? NO. It's part of the service.

Comcast is charging us, so we use can their service? Doesn't make sense.

COMCAST SUCKS MOOSE COCK.

FCC- got balls?

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