Q. A friend told me that Charter is raising the monthly bill for Spectrum TV customers and maybe even Internet prices. Is that true? How much will it go up? — Marlena, Syracuse.
Marlena, I’m afraid to tell you that your friend is right. Charter’s prices are going up in all 41 states it serves as soon as November 1.
The annual price increase by pay TV operators has become as inevitable as death and taxes and I’m sure that Charter’s hike will soon be followed by fee increases from Comcast, DIRECTV, Dish and all the rest.
The pay TV operators say that the cost of acquiring programming from the networks and other sources is skyrocketing, and that they have no choice but to pass the costs to their consumers. Of course, they could decide to trim their profits a bit, but that doesn’t happen very often in corporate America.
So, how much will your Charter bill go up?
According to various news reports across the country, including this one from The Asheville Citizen Times, Charter’s Broadcast TV fee will rise from $8.85 a month to $9.95 a month. (Note: Charter says the Broadcast TV charge is needed to offset the cost of licensing programming from local network affiliates.)
Charter customers who get Internet and video service will see their monthly Internet bill increase from $54.99 a month to $59.99 a month. Internet-only customers will see their bills rise from $64.99 a month to $65.99 a month.
The monthly cost of renting a Spectrum receiver will go from $6.99 a month to $7.50 a month.
The Rochester Democrat & Chronicle reports that Charter says it will not raise package prices for Spectrum TV or Spectrum Voice plans.
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— Phillip Swann