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Reducing your cable bill
Old 07-15-2018, 11:45 AM   #1
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Reducing your cable bill

As and FYI- federal law requires that cable companies make available a BASIC lineup only, which includes your local network and access channels. They do not generally advertise it, and may tell you it does not exist. My experience with the Charter/Spectrum rep was that he said it did not exist and no such offer was available. I told him that federal law requires it and that if he could not offer it, I would need to speak to a supervisor. He then replied that "now I could get it because I had to ask in a certain way!" right

Also, as an FYI Charter/Spectrum sub (and I think former Time Warner) offer a choice package where you can get the networks plus 10 channels of your choice. https://thestreamingadvisor.com/spectrum-tv-choice/
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Old 07-15-2018, 12:17 PM   #2
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I wonder what the price is when you bundle it with internet ?
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Old 07-15-2018, 12:21 PM   #3
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I looked into this for my Mom when we recently signed her up for Spectrum. Internet only plus Spectrum Choice was about the same monthly price as basic cable plus internet. Since Mom already understands the latter, that is what we went with.
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Old 07-15-2018, 12:27 PM   #4
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I wonder what the price is when you bundle it with internet ?
My daughter has the same service through Comcast and it's about $110 per month ($79 of that is for high speed internet). She has Sling and Netflix to round things about to about $150/month (Houston, TX area).
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Old 07-15-2018, 01:04 PM   #5
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In May of 2000, Cox Cable told me that cable internet would be $10/month by itself, but cable internet plus basic cable would be $11/month as a package deal. They didn't tell me about it but I specifically asked about basic cable and wormed it out of them and then decided to get that package. I figured for $1/month I'd get cable TV too. Not being a TV fan, I figured $1/month was about what it was worth. -

I kept that TV/internet package (despite rising prices) until April of 2011. At that point I was wondering why so many other people loved cable TV, and decided to splurge and get the more extended, non-basic TV service. My cost went up from $63/month to $125/month.

Gave that a heroic try and finally ditched cable TV entirely in May of 2014, at which point it was $171/month. I just use an OTA antenna and leave it at that. In my present location, I get quite a few more stations with my antenna than I got with basic cable.

So anyway, now I pay $80/month for internet alone. Somehow it doesn't feel like that great a deal. That said, Cox Cable recently decided to upgrade those of us with mid-level download speeds from 50 Mb to 120 Mb and the price did not go up (yet). I love having more speed.
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Old 07-15-2018, 01:24 PM   #6
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I don't consider an internet connection to be the same as cable provided entertainment channels (I know others do, there is overlap), but I just reduced my speed from 50/50 to 30/30 and cut my monthly cost of Internet by $30. So far I have noticed no practical difference.
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Old 07-15-2018, 07:53 PM   #7
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I don't consider an internet connection to be the same as cable provided entertainment channels (I know others do, there is overlap), but I just reduced my speed from 50/50 to 30/30 and cut my monthly cost of Internet by $30. So far I have noticed no practical difference.
My theory is that they can't actually change the speed through the cable - that it is the modem that controls the speed. If my theory is true then unless you actually got a new modem with the reduced service you haven't noticed a difference because there is no difference. You can track your speed using one the online tools.
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Old 07-15-2018, 08:06 PM   #8
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I pay $250/mo for high speed internet, premium TV with 4K on the main (home theater) 1080P HD on the rest ( 3 more including 2 wireless) and all the movie channels and landline.

I like landline. I like having a phone in every room, especially the kitchen -
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Old 07-15-2018, 08:34 PM   #9
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Robbie, we pay 200/month for the same thing. We love all our cable channels.
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Old 07-15-2018, 09:17 PM   #10
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I live in a rural area where the only option is satellite TV and internet. Expensive, and the internet service is limited (about $100/month for internet, over $100/month for TV). Satellite TV, since all we want to watch is old movies and football, is very expensive. You see, you can’t watch the Rams regularly without a sports package, and apparently Rams games are a necessity on a par with food and water.

Gonna try to do without the TV, download the movies, and subscribe to the NFL via internet. I’m afraid one streaming football game will use up about week’s allotment of GB.

Just moved to this spot from civilization, and trying to keep expenses low! Yikes.
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Old 07-15-2018, 09:28 PM   #11
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Hehe, yeah, it's not like I go to the movies...

I love my home theater and what good is it w/o the content?
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Old 07-16-2018, 05:22 AM   #12
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Spectrum basic TV is more expensive in my market.

Basic TV is $23.89 plus $8.85 broadcast fee plus $6.95 non-DVR STB ($39.69) plus tax. Standard internet is $54.99 after $10 bundle discount.

Choice TV (basic + 10 cable channels) standard rate is $37.99 including $3 broadcast fee. STB is optional. Existing customers generally get a promo rate of $32.99 (incl BCF).
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My theory is that they can't actually change the speed through the cable - that it is the modem that controls the speed. If my theory is true then unless you actually got a new modem with the reduced service you haven't noticed a difference because there is no difference. You can track your speed using one the online tools.
You are correct that the modem controls the speed. The existing modem is provisioned, or throttled, to a higher or lower speed by electronically sending the new provisioning codes through the cable to the modem and rebooting. The reboot stores the new settings. You only need to change the modem box if you move to a speed exceeding the modem's design specifications.
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Old 07-16-2018, 05:27 AM   #13
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For about 3 + years, my monthly Comcast bill was ~ $200. I live in a Condo which supplies basic cable and I upgraded some goodies. So I called Comcast and was told they have a promotion which lowered my monthly bill to ~$100 for a year. After a year, I called again and it was lowered again. Point being: don't assume they are offering you the best rate - just call for a promotion.

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Old 07-16-2018, 07:15 AM   #14
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I had Comcast for internet and cable television. They kept billing me for pay for view movies night after night at midnight when we never looked at anything pay for view. I got tired of spending time waiting in lines at their office for adjustments.

I switched to Dish Network but kept Comcast internet.

This is a very competitive field of business. I used to subscribe to Comcast special plans lasting 6 months. Then I would go in and get another special deal.

What is now so bad is the Comcast local service reps have little authority, and you can get a better deal/rates complaining to the foreigners they have on the phone. The more you complain, the better programs you can get with them.
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Old 07-16-2018, 06:38 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Live And Learn View Post
My theory is that they can't actually change the speed through the cable - that it is the modem that controls the speed. If my theory is true then unless you actually got a new modem with the reduced service you haven't noticed a difference because there is no difference. You can track your speed using one the online tools.
The ISP can remotely access your modem. The must when they check it's serial number to approve it to access the stream.

When they do this action they can preset what speeds it can handle.

My ISP's provided modems normally try to 'auto' set whatever the highest speed is that they can do without dropping parity bits. But when they do this, if we later have a thunder storm and the line starts dropping bits, it will settle on a slower speed. Whenever I notice that it has set itself on a lower speed I have to get their techs to remotely reset it.
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Old 07-16-2018, 06:42 PM   #16
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... I like landline. I like having a phone in every room, especially the kitchen -
We had landline for years. But the background noise static was pretty loud on it. It works okay for dsl, but voice is terrible on it.

Eventually we got them to shut-off the phone part and just keep us with the dsl service.

$30/month.

There is no cable company in our township. Just landline.
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Old 07-16-2018, 07:02 PM   #17
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..........I like landline. I like having a phone in every room, especially the kitchen -
I do, too, but the way I do it is with a Bluetooth connection. The base station talks to the cellphone and I can answer my cell phone in any room. I leave the cell phone in the car and the base station is in the garage.
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Old 07-16-2018, 07:26 PM   #18
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I live in a rural area where the only option is satellite TV and internet. Expensive, and the internet service is limited (about $100/month for internet, over $100/month for TV). Satellite TV, since all we want to watch is old movies and football, is very expensive. You see, you canít watch the Rams regularly without a sports package, and apparently Rams games are a necessity on a par with food and water.

Gonna try to do without the TV, download the movies, and subscribe to the NFL via internet. Iím afraid one streaming football game will use up about weekís allotment of GB.

Just moved to this spot from civilization, and trying to keep expenses low! Yikes.
Check out Sling to see if you can get Rams games. DD and her husband use it for NFL games (KC) and they are in Houston.
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Old 07-16-2018, 07:43 PM   #19
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Check out Sling to see if you can get Rams games. DD and her husband use it for NFL games (KC) and they are in Houston.
Thanks!
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Old 07-19-2018, 11:13 AM   #20
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I got rid of cable and FIOS for Internet and now use a 4G hotspot for Internet. For cable channels I am on YouTubeTV and OTA via home built antenna with a capture device. For movies I use the Library and Redbox.
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