Directly on the heels of Time Warner Cable charging their customers a new $2.95 modem rental fee
, Bright House Communications has started charging a modem rental fee of their own. The company started informing customers Septmeber 15 that starting October 1, Bright House would be charging customers a $2 "maintenance & rental" fee. Bright House insists the fee helps cover the installation, service and support of the modem.
Cable operators like Comcast have been charging such a fee for some time. Still, it's a way to jack up prices without looking like a company is jacking up prices by burying the cost of doing business in below-the-line fees.
"It was one of the many things that Bright House covered,'' Bright House spokesman Joe Durkin tells the Tampa Bay Times
. "Since then we've added a lot of services at no charge.'' Customers aren't impressed. "I think it's ridiculous,'' an 88-year-old man tells the paper. "It's like charging $2 to wash your dishes at a restaurant. It should be part of the cost of doing business.''
You can fortunately still buy your own modem to avoid the fee, provided it's on Bright House's approved modem list