Friday, June 13, 2008

Time Warner cable service-- keeping me happy

I get my home cable service from Time Warner. I have been a customer for many many years. I'm not even sure how many, but I want to claim that I was their very first customer in Cary. I don't know this for a fact, but I did place my order within seconds of receiving the email that it was available. This was after having signed-up to be notified way in advance.

I remember the install day all too well. The newly trained technician showed-up to install my modem and connect it to the computer. Of course, he was massively confused when I told him I used Linux and that his "install" disk was useless. I assured him that he could just leave the modem and that I could get it working no problem. This made him extremely uncomfortable-- he wanted to finish the job. He hung around long enough to watch me get it working.

I have to say that I have been a very satisfied Time Warner customer. In the early years they would have some outages, but for the last 6 or 7 years they have been rock solid for me. Early on the speed would be an issue, but of late I think it's as fast or faster than my university network performance-- at least for me speed is not an issue.

Which brings me to this announcement I received this morning from TW:

As part of Time Warner Cable’s commitment to provide the latest in technology and innovation, we are pleased to announce an increase in the downstream speed of Road Runner High Speed Online from 5 Mbps to 7 Mbps - at no additional charge! It’s the blazing-speed of Road Runner High Speed Online that you have come to expect, only faster!

To receive the full benefit of the speed increase, you will need to switch out your current modem for a newer model. Of course, there will be no extra charge for this swap! If your modem has been replaced in the last 30 days, you do not need to swap it for a new one at this time.

More speed, new modem, and no additional cost. Love it. Now, I just have to hope that Time-Warner doesn't go through with their idiotic plans for metered charges:

Time Warner Cable will be testing a new billing system for their Internet customers in Beaumont, Texas. Instead of a flat rate, Web users will be billed depending on how much information they upload or download. The cable company’s metered Internet access will grant its subscribers a monthly allowance for uploaded and downloaded Web files and, if customers exceed the allowance, they will be charged a fee for each gigabyte used. The test will apply to new customers only and the additional fee for exceeding monthly caps will not be charged for the first two months of service.

This is crazy. It is not the way the Internet is supposed to work, and it's been working just fine thank you! You don't mess with success. I am so glad that I don't live in Beaumont, TX where I would be looking for a new Internet provider. Like I mentioned, I have been happy with Time Warner, but I would drop them in a minute if they turn this evil test into a nationwide reality.


Anonymous said...

I have a sinking suspicion that the new modem they shipped has a few additional "features" that can make metered service a reality.

Kevin Gamble said...

I had the exact same feeling as well. It makes me nervous.