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03/13/2003 Archived Entry: "Yeah, I got yer freakin' broadband right here!"
Posted by CKL @ 10:45 PM PST

We've had AT&T Broadband Internet (ATTBI) service for a couple of years, but now that Comcast is buying ATTBI, our cable modem cost is increasing from $45 to $57 a month-- a more than 25% price increase. They sent us a very nice letter explaining how we could continue to get the same service for "just $42.95 a month..." if we also sign up for cable TV, which costs us another $40 a month... for the first four months. After that, it goes up to Ghod knows how much; the Comcast web site certainly won't tell me.

I don't want cable TV. I've already got a satellite dish, and I much prefer that to cable, especially since my satellite receiver is also a PVR. Why would I ever want to trade it in for some clunky cable box for which I'd have to buy a separate, external PVR unit? Why would I want a setup like my friend Karl has: a PVR connected to a crappy cable box which, half the time, doesn't receive the PVR's remote control signals and therefore ends up recording the wrong channel?

Anyway. I spent a few minutes today researching DSL and other broadband service options-- still not great for residential customers, but better than two years ago-- and it's pretty obvious that we'll be turning off our ATTBI/Comcast cable modem and going with another, DSL service provider. It'll be annoying, of course, since we'll have to run another wire from the bedroom phone jack into the office (or install new phone wiring in the office) and put filters on all the other phone jacks in the house. But considering the alternatives-- much more expensive cable modem or much slower dial-up-- it's a very minor hassle.

That's capitalism for you: "economies of scale" is just an euphemism for "lowest common denominator."

Replies: 2 comments

Actually, I have since switched to a standalone TiVo2 connected to a standalone Dish Network satellite box. The IR transmitter is about 95% reliable, and TiVo's features more than make up for any inconveniences. Now if Dish would just stop compressing the hell out of everything...

Posted by CKL @ 02/28/2004 01:40 AM PST

Posted by @ 00/00/ 00:00 PST

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