Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Reduced My Cable Bill... Bigtime!

I have been a cable subscriber for many years now.  Cable is the viable choice we have for Internet Access in the area we live in.  I was happy paying my $58 bill each month for Internet and Basic TV... But one day I came home and found a cable bill for almost $100 dollars in the mailbox.

"This can not be."  I said to myself.  But a quick call to my cable company confirmed it.  They had practically doubled my bill, and they did not seem to want to negotiate the price.  So...  I decided to make some changes.
  1. I bought an HDTV antenna.  No more paying for TV stations.  I get about 20 channels.  And the programming isn't bad at all! 
  2. I evaluated video streaming options...  Still thinking about it.  Services like offer streaming of TV shows etc.
  3. I bought a new cable modem.  (It seems that I had been paying a modem rental fee of $7 per month.  According to my calculations I have paid over 600 bucks in rental fees for a 54 dollar modem!)  The new modem will pay for itself in no time.
  4. I called my cable company and discontinued my TV service -  keeping only my Internet Access.
  5. I activated my new cable modem and returned the one I had been renting back to my cable company's local office.  No more $7 rental fee!
My cable bill is now $39.99!  I can live with that!

Now...The cable company keeps calling me to offer promotional packages.  Essentially they want to rope me in for some low price for 3 months, then jack the rates up again.  No thanks!  :)

Lessons Learned:
  • Never rent when you can own.
  • Never pay when you can get it for free.
  • TV is mostly just background noise in my home.  We hardly ever sit down and watch TV shows.  I can honestly say I do not miss cable TV at all.  Cable TV is so infected with commercials that it is difficult to grasp what you are watching.  In fact the things we watch now are more to our liking!
  • Beware any promotional offering... It is merely a ploy to get you on-board so that they can increase the price later. 


  1. The providers still have ways of sticking it to you. I dropped my satellite TV service several years ago when the monthly charges became unbearable. A couple of years ago I established Internet-only service with the local cable provider, getting twice the speed at 63% of the price I had been paying for DSL. Two months ago, without notification, they raised my speed from 3 Mbps to 15 Mbps and jacked the monthly rate up 20%. It's a 20% rate hike for something I can't use, because much of my network equipment is old 10 Mbps stuff, and I'm not inclined to replace it all with 10/100 or gigabit equipment. Besides, many Web sites can't even deliver content at 1 Mbps, much less 10 or 15 Mbps. A buddy runs Skype with video at 750 kbps over a DSL connection just fine, and unless one likes to download movies over the 'net, anything over 1 to 2 Mbps is overkill.

  2. You are so right Panamint Joe! I have been going round and round with my provider... THey keep trying to jack up my rates. And they keep trying to tell me that I owe them a modem rental fee (I own my modem.)... If it keeps up I will probably drop my provider all together and go with a mobile solution.