Despite promises that TV competition from the baby bells would result in some kind of price-utopia (frequently promised by lobbyists in order to get favorable regulation), we recently noted how prices continued to rise
in the Boston area. The Detroit News
finds much the same thing in the Detroit area, where AT&T is the only TV provider that won't be raising rates there this Winter (and that's likely only because they haven't offered service long enough there yet, given they've raised prices elsewhere). According to the paper, TV hikes are ranging from 3 to 6.5%:
The increases -- 6.5 percent for Comcast, 6 percent for Charter Communications and Wide Open West, 4.3 percent for Bright House Communications, 4 percent for DirecTV and 3 percent for DISH Network -- compare to an inflation rate of 2.85 percent in 2007. The hikes will show up in February bills, except for DirecTV subscribers, who will pay more beginning in March.
The paper notes that From 1995 to 2005, average U.S. cable rates rose 93%, while the Consumer Price Index saw a 30% jump during the same period. As they do every times we see one of these reports, the providers insist that the price increases "reflect the increased value of our services."