The Cost of Cable

Posted: 07/18/2009 by that's Elbert in internet service, TV
Tags: ,

Back a few years ago I signed up for Comcast’s Triple Play deal in the hopes of saving some cash. Triple Play gave us television, internet access, and phone service. At the time it wan’t really saving us much but it gave us a great deal more value for our buck, so we jumped on the deal. For the first year we got a lot of deals, including a free DVR and movie channels yet we still only paid less that $110 dollars.

Once that first year was up we got the surprise. We could not continue on that deal. We would have to take in more television channels and jack our price up to $129. That price didn’t cover all the rental fees, franchise fees, and anything else that got tacked on after the deal. In addition, we had to commit to that price for two years, and they would take no less. Funny thing, that required two year commitment came not long after Comcast had ran ads criticizing other providers for requiring two year commitments. Those ads had mysteriously disappeared. All told, the price tag went up to around $150, roughly a $40 price increase. Seeing no viable alternative, I took the deal.

Recently I was looking over those Comcast services again. Because of the use and need of cell phones in our household, our home phone wasn’t used much except for receiving calls from the mortgage company, utilities, etc. It’s not like those folks were calling everyday, so the home phone doesn’t look like it was worth what we were paying each month. My thought was to drop the Comcast phone service, switching our home phone service to MagicJack. I really don’t want to receive calls from the mortgage company, electric company, and such on my cell phone, so the MagicJack service, being priced at $20 a year, looked like the affordable alternative to receive those calls. So I made the call to Comcast.

In our discussions with the Comcast salesman, it seems that we would be paying more per month for only television and internet. If we kept the three service bundle, we would be paying roughly $13 less than my television and internet solution. So, today we are still Comcast Triple Play subscribers, and I am still unhappy.

I was thinking switching our television service to either one of the satellite television companies, Dish or DirecTV. At the end of this contract with Comcast, I might revisit this whole Triple Play bundle again. If we can get a good deal on satellite TV, Comcast might only provide our internet service. We shall see.

  1. D.Scott Smith says:

    Wouldn’t it be great to have Fios!!!!!! I am chomping at the bit!

  2. Satellite TV has its drawbacks, but can be cheaper. Local channels are a big issue around here, but shouldn’t be too much of a problem since the digital switchover.

    All of your local channels are not available on satellite. If you can get CBS (WBOC), Fox (WBOC), and ABC (WMDT) over the air, they will not provide you with those network stations, and you will have to get an antenna to receive those.

    The antenna can be fully integrated with your satellite system.

  3. We had DirecTV for a while when we lived in Millsboro. We had a service called “Sky Angel” (which at the time used Dish’s satellite) for a year in Millsboro. We always got the local channels on an antenna.

    Back in the day (1970’s) when it was only WBOC, they carried all three networks (ABC, NBC, & CBS), but predominately carried CBS.

    I remember when DirecTV tried to tell us that Atlantic City, NJ’s NBC affiliate was local so we couldn’t get NBC on their system. I told them if they could come out to our property and pick up the signal, then I’d go along with that. I got NBC on DirectTV.

    Alright, enough useless trivia.

  4. arthur says:

    Call them at the end of your contract and tell them you are switching to DISH because the cost of comcast is too high. They will drop you to your original rate.

  5. Andy Lynch says:

    It is my understanding you’ll play more JUST for Comcast internet service, if you don’t have TV service from them. Approx $15/month more.