Time Warner Cable Raising Rates 6.4%

Time Warner Cable says it's raising its rates for cable and internet services by 6.4 percent.

A spokesperson for the company says the price hike is due to increasing costs of local broadcast programming, as well as the cost to make upgrades to services.

"The changes may seem seamless to our customers, but that ongoing investment in our network is something that we continue to do to make sure that the service our customers receive is up to expectations. We are always adding new services and features that we encourage our customers to look into if they're not familiar," said Joli Plucknette-Farmen, a Time Warner Public Relations Manager.

Subscribers who are currently in promotional deals won't see any rate increase until their promotions run out. Everyone else will see a rate increase on or after March 19 depending on their billing cycle.

"Our price changes overall are about more new channels, on-demand choices and features as well as increased programming costs overall and investments to make our network more reliable and robust," says Plucknette-Farmen.

Last year, Plucknette-Farmen says Time Warner spent $227-million strengthening its network in the Northeast.

We Skyped with Roger Yu on Tuesday. Yu covers technology and media for USA Today.

"Retrans costs, sports programming costs, cable companies wanting to bundle their channels. I mean, these trends are not going away any time soon," says Yu.

Yu says with cable networks charging cable companies more to carry their channels - the cost is passed on to you. One type of programming in particular is very expensive.

"The cable networks that have sports content like ESPN, they know that they have the leverage power, bargaining power. That's why they're spending so much money buying the sports programming. They have more college bowls now and they know that is what live TV viewers want," says Yu.

Yu does not see cable going away even as more people turn to services like Apple TV, Roku, Netflix and Hulu. He doesn't see it getting any cheaper either.

"I think it's hard to imagine rates going down. It may stabilize at one point, but we haven't seen any signs that the rates are going down any time soon," he says.

Time Warner told us that beyond this rate hike, it does not have any rate hikes planned for the future.


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